North Central and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council Elections – 20th August 2008 – Media Communiqué No. 2

CMEV

North Central and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council Elections

20th August 2008 – Media Communiqué No. 2

In the last 24 hours of the election campaign period of North Central and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council Elections, there were 9 grave incidents of election related violence reported to CMEV from Anuradhapura District.

Of these, 5 were reported from Anuradhapura East electorate, 3 from the Kekirawa electorate and 1 from the Kalawawa electorate.

Electorate: Anuradhapura East

Arson 20th August, 2008 / 01:50Hrs
A gang, assumed to be supporters of Berti Pramalal Dissanayake, UPFA candidate for the Anuradhapura District, opened fire on a house belonging to Hettiarachchlage Prasanna Lakshan and damaged a car (Toyota Corrolla) parked at the house.

Arson 20th August, 2008 / 03:15Hrs
A double cab (40-2405) and a van (57-3703) owned by M.M. Anoordeen, UNP candidate for the Anuradhapura District was set ablaze allegedly by supporters of the UPFA in the Kanadara Katukeliyawa area. The assailants also fired several shots towards the house of Mr. M.M Anoordeen’s father-in-law using an automatic rifle.

Assault and damage to property 20th August 20, 2008 / 12:10Hrs
UPFA supporters Prassanna Bassnayake and Raja Basnayake allegedly damaged a house and vehicle belonging to a UNP supporter, Mayurapani Vimal Thusara, while another UNP supporter was attacked with a sword at the same location. The attackers later fled the scene, leaving behind a motorbike with registration number #NC HP 1442.

Damage to Property 20th August, 2008 / 12:30Hrs
Supporters of the UPFA North Central Ministerial Candidate Berty Premalal Dissanayake attacked and caused damage to a house belonging to Kasthuri Anuradhanayake, a Legal Officer for the UNP in the Anuradhapura District.

Arson on property of Dr. John Pulle -20th August 2008, 17:00Hrs
A group of alleged UPFA supporters damaged and set fire to a UNP Party office located at Harischandra Mw, Anuradhapura along with a house and dispensary belonging to Dr. John Pulle ,who is also the Anuradhapura District Coordinator of UNP. Three vehicles (65-1782, HB- 7797, KD 9191) were also set ablaze by the same group at the premises.

Kalawewa 20th August, 2008 / 12:30Hrs
Ajantha Wasala Bandara, Secretary of Dumindha Dissanayake, a UPFA MP for the Anuradhapura District sustained injuries due to gunshots fired by an unknown gang of people travelling in a blue colored van. It is also alleged that the assailants threw a petrol bomb at the vehicle of the victim.

Kekirawa 20th August 2008 /09:30Hrs
UPFA supporters, D. Sampath and Jayatissa, allegedly damaged the vehicle of Ashoka Gunasiri, UNP candidate for the Anuradhapura District and went on to threaten him with a handgun. H.D. Shantha, a supporter of Ashoka Gunasiri also sustained injuries during the incident.

Kekirawa  20th August 2008 /09:30Hrs
A group of alleged UPFA supporters led by Sooriya Walpola attacked and damaged a party office of the UNP in Kekirawa and damaged a van (59-4264) and a double-cab (NC HA 6374) owned by UNP candidate Sunil Dissanayake.

Kekierawa 20th, August 2008 /15:15Hrs
Group of individuals, suspected to be supporters of UPFA Chief Ministerial Candidate Berty Premalal, opened fire on a house in Kekirawa belonging to UNP supporter K.V Abeysingha, damaging a vehicle (253-1495) in the process.

Kekirawa 20th, August 2008 / 10.15Hrs
A group of alleged UNP supporters attacked and damaged a party office of Mr. Gamage Weerasena, a UPFA candidate, in Maradankadawala

It is reported to CMEV that all incidents, except the damage caused to the office of Mr.Weerasena Gamage who is a UPFA candidate for North Central Province, are allegedly committed by the UPFA against the UNP.

The supporters of Mr. Berty Premalal Disanayake, the UPFA Chief Ministerial candidate, have been identified as the perpetrators of 3 of these incidents. CMEV believes that the increasing violence in Anuradhapura District is a crucial factor which militates against the conduct of a free and fair election. We there urgently request the IGP and all other responsible officials to take all measures to ensure a free and fair election.

DR.PAIKIASOTHY SARAVANAMUTTU (CO-CONVENOR)

MR. UDAYA KALUPATHIRANA (CO-CONVENOR)

MR. UVINDU KURUKULASURIYA (CO-CONVENOR)