Friday, October 7, 2011

The fear of the young candidates for the 23 Local Council Elections in Sri Lanka - October 2011

It is not a hidden fact that all the young candidates seeking election to the local bodies, mainly Municipal Council worry that their preference votes will be stolen by the senior candidates. Apparently the senior candidates are well versed in the art of stealing preference votes. Due to the fact that only the candidates themselves can be present at the time the preferences are tallied, it is difficult for one person to be in at all the counting rooms where the preferences for a particular area are counted.

This requires experience and the new candidates are all novices at this game. It is also a fact that senior candidates use the Independent candidate route, to have their people at the counting centers when the preferences are counted. This is the tried and tested method of the old timers. It is a shame that unscrupulous candidates use this method as if it was completely legitimate to deny the inexperienced who are physically unable to protect their preferences from the old guard and their unscrupulous tactics.

In a long line of examples of why the preference system is bad for politics, this is just another added reason why the current style of preference voting can be detrimental in the long term. So if we cannot get candidates to be morally scrupulous, we just have to do away with the preference system and just have a one person one vote situation for a particular individual.

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