Election Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya carries a cardboard ballot box to the press conference.
Pic by Pradeep Pathirana
By Yohan Perera
Those who have been tasked to stay at home for an extra 14 days after being released from quarantine centres will be allowed to cast their ballot after 4 pm at special booths reserved for them in polling stations, a press conference was told yesterday.
Chairman of Election Commission Mahinda Deshapriya told a joint press conference that those who had been released from quarantined centres and have been asked to stay at home for extra 14 days will be allowed to cast their votes after 4 pm. They will be casting their votes in special booths erected to them in polling stations.
He said there will be 1,800 persons who have been released from quarantine centres and are staying at home for extra 14 days will be allowed to vote at 4 pm. “They will be allowed to come into the polling stations with their family members,” Mr. Desharpiya said. He said 190 persons who are in Lankapura Quarantine centre will not be able to cast their votes.
“All precautions have been taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 as a result of the elections,” the Polls Chief said. Accordingly, a small stick which is no bigger than a match stick will be used to paint the finger of each voter while the voter will have the option of painting his own finger. The hands of each voter will be sanitized when walking in and going out of the polling stations. In addition, he said the booth where votes are marked will also be sanitized after each voter marks their vote. The polling officers will stay behind screens to ensure their safety.
Accordingly, he said people will be asked to come wearing a mask and to bring a black or blue ballpoint pen.
“Sri Lanka has been able to ensure a victory for democracy and to defeat COVID -19,” he said.
Director General of Health Services Dr. Anil Jasinghe who also participated in the press conference ruled out the possibility of spreading of COVID-19 as the disease is not present in the society at the moment.
- the booth where votes are marked will also be sanitized after each voter marks their vote