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Workers must be given leave to vote

The Elections Commission has received a large number of complaints from employees that their employers are not willing to grant them leave to cast their votes on February 10.


Chairman of the Commission Mahinda Deshapriya, issuing a press release, urged all private and public sector organizations to ensure that their employees are able to vote at the local government election.


The employer must decide the time given to an employee to vote, depending on the distance between their place of employment and their polling centre. Deshapriya stated that in almost all previous elections, there have been a significant number of complaints from employees stating that their right to vote have been violated by employers who did not provide them with leave to vote.


According to article 84 A (1) of the Local Authorities Elections Ordinance (Chapter 262) ‘Any person, being the employer of any other person who is entitled to vote at any election under this Ordinance shall, upon application in writing in that behalf made by such other person, grant such other person, leave, without loss of pay, for such continuous period (not less than two hours in duration) as that person may deem sufficient to enable such other person to vote at that election.’ Any person who violated this is liable to a fine or a prison sentence.

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