The upcoming parliamentary election could cost up to Rs 10 billion due to the additional expenses that has to be incurred to put in place COVID-19 prevention health safeguards, Chairman of the Election Commission Mahinda Deshapriya informed President Gotabaya Rajapaksa yesterday.
He made this disclosure at a meeting the EC members held with the President to discuss related issues in connection with the 5 August Parliamentary election.
Deshapriya along with the other two members of the Commission N.J. Abeysekara PC and Prof.S. Rathnajeevan H.Hoole were present at the meeting. Acting Inspector General of Police (IGP) Chandana Wickremaratne and Director General of Health Services (DGHS) Dr.Anil Jasinghe too were among others who attended the meeting.
The EC Chairman informed that while it was initially estimated the election would cost around Rs. 6-7 billion, this cost would rise to around Rs 10 billion given the additional expenses.
President Rajapaksa has assured that the necessary funds would be made available to the EC and pledged support to the EC to hold the election without any hurdles and requested the EC members to take necessary measures to ensure that the election is conducted in a free, fair, and impartial manner.