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* Sri Lanka provincial polls peaceful, low voter turnout
Sat, Mar 29, 2014, 07:44 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Mar 29, Colombo: The elections held for the Western and Southern Provincial Councils in Sri Lanka ended peacefully with no major incidents and counting of ballots commenced at 608 counting centers in the provinces.

The Election Commissioner said the first result can be expected around 11 pm while the postal votes result will be announced around 8pm local time.

Today's provincial council polls recorded a low voter turnout, especially in the Colombo district of the Western Province.

Colombo district recorded the lowest, just 49 percent of registered voters casting their ballots, according to the election monitor, People's Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL).

Kalutara district of the Western Province recorded a better turnout at 60 percent while the turnout in Gampaha district was around 50 percent.

In Southern Province voter turnout in the Galle District was 51 percent and about 55 percent in Matara district according to the District Secretary for the Matara District.

Highest percentage of voter turnout was recorded from Hambantota district where around 61 percent of registered voters cast their ballots.

Meanwhile, the Election Complaints Unit established at the Elections Secretariat said that they have received 116 complaints of regarding the election today, an election official said.

According to the official, most of the complaints are regarding illegal propaganda and undue influencing of voters.

The highest number of complaints was reported from the Western Province. According to the official 85 complaints were reported from the Western Province and 31 from Southern Province.

The police spokesman SSP Ajith Rohana said that the elections were fairly peaceful with a few minor incidents reported except for the clashes in Beruwala this afternoon.

The police spokesman requested the candidates and their supporters to refrain from hindering the duties of election officials.

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