Easter Sunday bombs had not been a factor which had determined the results of the presidential election in predominantly Catholic areas as there may have been other issues which led the people in the areas concerned to vote as they did, Catholic politicians in the area said today.
Veteran Catholic politician, former Speaker Joseph Michael Perera told the Daily Mirror that there may have been other issues which led New Democratic Front (NDF) Candidate Sajith Premadasa to win Negombo and Wattala electorates at Saturday’s presidential election.
“We cannot say that Catholics voted the way they did, defying the propaganda carried out by the SLPP but it may be so that there may have been other issues which led to the results. I cannot pinpoint the factors now but certainly there must have been other factors,” he said.
Minister John Amaratunga also said the bomb attack had not been the issue but said the number of votes which NDF candidate received was not sufficient particularly in Wattala.
However, Member of Parliament Nimal Lanza said the result was due to the ethnic ratio in the area. “Muslims and Tamils are a majority in Negombo and Wattala and the result in two electorates was the same as the other areas where there is a Tamil and Muslim majority,” he said.
NDF Candidate Sajith Premadasa won the Negombo electorate obtaining 44,032 votes while SLPP candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa received 31,032 votes. Mr Premadasa secured the Wattala electorate with a slim majority. He obtained 48,463 votes while Mr Rajapaksa obtained 48,214 votes. (Yohan Perera)