Sept 21, 2017 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s parliament voted to amend the Provincial Council election Act with a hybrid system where both proportional representation and first-past-the-post will apply and also better representation to women, Wednesday.
MPs voted 154 in favour and 44 against the rather controversial legislation with only Joint Opposition which is led by former president Mahinda Rajapaksa voting against.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said that the Government was willing to go back to the drawing board if further amendments were required.
“We will not degrade the citizens of this country, be it the majority or the minority. If it is a unfair situation, we will come back to the Parliament to amend it,” he stressed.
“We will do the needful and draw up electoral boundaries for the hybrid election system within four months and complete the due council elections by January.”
The amendment will ensure that future elections to Provincial Councils will be under a hybrid system where both proportional representation and first-past-the-post will apply.
There is also a provision to ensure a minimum of 25 percent representation for women candidates.
At the moment there are less than 5 percent of women in elected bodies. This move will give women the opportunity to participate in politic and play a leading role in society.