The Registration of Electors Act, No. 44 of 1980 was introduced to provide the provisions for registration of electors according to the Article 101 of the Constitution 1978.
Basic qualifications to be an elector
- Shall be a citizen of Sri Lanka.
- Shall have attained the age of 18 years on the qualifying date, June 1st, to register in the respective electoral register.
- Shall be a resident at the relevant address.
- Shall be a person who is not subject to, any disqualification mentioned in the Article 89 of the Constitution until the 01st of June, (Shall not under any law in force found to be of unsound mind, not a person who is serving or has during the period of seven years immediately preceding, completed serving of a sentence of imprisonment for a term not less than six months imposed after conviction by any Court for an offence, not being a person who has being convicted of any offence under the law relating to elections)
- No person is entitled to have his name entered or retained in more than one register or more than once in the same register.
In the year 2013, the Commissioner of Elections declared 01st of June, as the “Voters’ Day” as all basic qualifications to register as an elector need to be completed by the 01st of June every year. The Voters’ Day is conducted for a week, prior and after the 01st of June, with various island wide awareness programmes with the expectation that the all qualified persons would be entered in the electoral register.
Process of Registration
Registration of electors under the Registration of Electors Act, No. 44 of 1980
1. Registration of Electors and the revision of electoral registers are done annually. At the district level the Department of Elections is represented by Senior Deputy/ Deputy/ Assistant Commissioners of Elections (the Assistant Registering Officers) to direct and control the revision work under the supervision of the District Secretary/ Government Agent. The Commissioner of Elections appoints District Secretaries / Government Agents as the Registering Officers of the respective Districts. The Registering Officer appoints enumerators to visit house to house for compiling the particulars of voters. Chief occupants of each household are expected to duly perfect the enumeration form (BC form) supplied to them. Village level government officer, Grama Niladhari, undertakes the enumeration and Special Enumerators are appointed for this work in the Metropolitan areas (eg. Colombo and Negombo Municipal Council Areas) where the enumeration is complicated. Special enumerators are the persons who are serving in various capacities in the public service.
2.After collecting the completed documents (BC forms) and other relevant reports from the enumerators at the District Offices, the “A” List including the names to be deleted from the operative register and the “B” List including the names to be included in the revised register will be compiled by computer and exhibited at the following places for a 28 days of statutory period during the months of September or October each year.
3.People can scrutinize the operative register, the list of names to be deleted from it and the list of names to be included in it and can submit a claim, if his name is not recommended to register for the respective year and can submit an objection if a name of a person, who is not qualified to be registered as an elector, is recommended to be registered. The Claims and objections are entertained during the above mentioned 28 days statutory period.
4.On completion of enquiries into claims and objections conducted by the District Deputy/ Senior Deputy/ Assistant Commissioners of Elections and after inserting the names to be included and removing the names to be deleted, such amended electoral register is rechecked with the BC Forms handed over by the enumerators and then the “Draft Register” is exhibited at District Elections Offices, all Grama Niladhari Offices and on the web site of the Department, a week prior to the prescribed date for the certification of the electoral register. During that week as well, any person has the opportunity to scrutinize the register, immediately inform the respective District Elections Office and the Grama Niladharis in writing and enter his/her name in the register, if he/she has discovered that his/her name is not entered even after he/she handed over the BC Form to the enumerator, during the prescribed period and is informed that his/her claim is accepted at the claim enquiry.
There is no provision for overseas registration or voting.
Election Commission of Sri Lanka, Enumeration, http://www.slelections.gov.lk/web/index.php/en/enumeration.