Smaller parties unhappy with electoral reform plan

elections votingSri Lanka’s smaller political parties representing minority communities have expressed opposition to the proposed 20th amendment to the constitution which incorporates reforms to the electoral system.

“We are opposed to the move of bringing electoral reforms as an urgent bill. We are for reforming the system but we want the next election to be held under the existing system of proportional representation,” said Mano Ganesan, a leader of a Tamil political party.

Tamil and Muslim minority political parties and the third largest majority Sinhala party, JVP or the People’s Liberation Front, have held talks on the proposed 20th amendment which is likely to be presented in parliament on May 19.

Under the new system, there would be more seats in parliament than the current 225. Political parties are yet to agree on the new system.

Mr. Ganesan said the minority parties feel best served under the existing system, therefore any changes need to be consulted and agreed with the minority parties.

“We feel that the mixed system with its first past the post feature would be advantageous to the two main political parties,” Mr. Ganesan said, referring to the United National Party (UNP) and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP). (The Hindu)

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