The Election Commission of Sri Lanka is constitutionally empowered to regulate the media during an election period by issuing media guidelines.The present discourse on media regulation during elections focuses on how these guidelines have been used to regulate state-owned media. This briefing note examines how the Election Commission is also constitutionally empowered to regulate the privately-owned media during an election period.
This brief is a primer on the ongoing debate concerning the proposed reform of the Muslim Marriage and Divorce Act (MMDA). The brief contains information on the background of the debate, and the key stakeholders involved in the proposed reform process. It also summarises the proposed reforms of the MMDA and other legislation.
The original version of this report was commissioned by the Westminster Foundation for Democracy to assist in its work in Sri Lanka with the Sri Lankan parliament and political parties. The opinions expressed and contents of this report are not necessarily those held by Westminster Foundation for Democracy. The report was prepared by the politics research practice at Verité Research with Charudaththa Ekanayake functioning as principal researcher under the overall editorial supervision of Janeen Fernando.
This report examines the key features and functions of a Mixed-Member Proportional (MMP) electoral system that needs to be considered when engaging in electoral system reform. It provides recommendations that address the President’s election campaign promises on electoral reform. It further reveals the MMP system as the only electoral system that can adequately fulfil the twin imperatives of reintroducing smaller single member (and several multi member) electoral districts and preserving proportional representation (PR) in voting outcomes as outlined in President Maithripala Sirisena’s Election Manifesto
The Sri Lanka Strategic Assessment analyses six spheres of contestation within Sri Lanka’s current political context, and assesses their impact in terms of securing peace and accelerating inclusive growth in the future. These spheres of contestation have been identified and classified along two axes: horizontal contestation and vertical contestation. The former deals with contestation within and between communities, while the latter deals with contestation between the Sri Lankan state and citizens.
Anticipation of voter behaviour in the 2015 presidential election can be informed by the evolution of voter trends in previous elections. Analysis of election results in Uva over the last decade suggests that the war and war-victory created a deviation in voting patterns among UNP supporters. In the opportunities to vote in the early aftermath of the war-victory, a section of the UNP might have been persuaded to cast a ‘gratitude vote’ for the UFPA, especially President Mahinda Rajapaksa. The numbers suggest that in later elections the same voter might have decided to abstain (become a ‘sleeper’) thus making the UNP seem uncompetitive in electoral contests, even while the UPFAs’ vote share ebbed. The 2014 Provincial Council election in Uva signals a return from that deviation towards normal competitive politics.
This research study on religious discrimination and violence targeting Christians in Sri Lanka is based on over 20 years of reports gathered by the National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka. The methodology used was created by Verité Research in 2013 as a form of classifying incidents reported by religious freedom groups into discernible categories as a way of understanding emerging trends in religious intolerance and violence.
Sri Lanka’s Western and Southern provinces went to the polls on 29 March 2014. The report analyses political party performance across using historical, polling division and preferential vote data sets. It also uses socio-economic data to assess the the impact of social cleavages on voting.