Without Electoral Reforms, constitutional amendments are meaningless
Posted on March 16th, 2015

CaFFE Press Statement

Without Electoral Reforms, constitutional amendments are meaningless

Reforms can be completed within 3 months or less if there is a political will.

The 19th amendment to the constitution has been gazetted, however the future of electoral reforms still appear unclear as party leaders are to meet once again tomorrow (17th) to discuss amendments.

The Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) believes that electoral reforms should go hand in hand with the constitutional reforms. CaFFE believes that the constitutional amendments will not be meaningful without electoral reforms that are necessary to change the political culture.  As mentioned in our previous press release, there are three elements of electoral reforms

  1. Political (Constitutional amendments)
  2. Technical (Delimitation)
  3. Implementation (When to hold the election under the new mixed system)

It has been established that the technical aspect can be completed within 2 months, but what seems to be lacking is the political will to decide on the outline of future reforms despite the wide spread debate on electoral reforms.

CaFFE has been working with a number of interested parties and came up with a base document, which was revealed on March 11th at the Foundation Institute. The response to the document has been positive and a serious discussion has begun based on our statistics. To facilitate that discussion and to encourage alternative proposals we have revised the statistical data to address concerns of political parties.

We believe that with the ideas of all political parties, especially with those who might lose out the most, have deepened the discussion and these concerns are addressed in this revised formula which puts the final FPP : PR ratio at 60:40. In addition per population FPP seats remain at 125 and while seats allocated for special consideration has been increased to 15 from 9.

CaFFE sees this allocation will minimize the disadvantages for small political parties and will ensure a more meaningful representative democracy. To strengthen the public dialogue on electoral deforms we have attached herewith the revised document on electoral reforms of March 16. The revised document—March 16th table– compiled by Dr. Sujata Gamage and Professor Rohan Samarajiva is attached hearwith.

There will be further improvement and working documents will be uploaded regularly to the CaFFE website www.caffesrilanka.org including ethnicity analysis, demographics and other important fact sheets.

Please let us know your suggestions, concerns which can improve the representative democracy, to achieve electoral reforms.

Research Unit – CaFFE

March 16, 2015

140+70+25 =235  (Final FPP:PR ratio is 60:40)
125 FPP allocated as per population distribution and 15 by special consideration*
Distributions-Current Distribution Envisaged Impact
district # Electors FPP Units-hist-160  # MPs-current-196  FPP-125  FPP-15  FPP-140  PR-70  # MPs-New-201  # MPs, Article 98 Method** Differe nce*** Electors per FPP Unit  Electors per MP
01-Colombo     1,586,598 15 19 13 1 14 7 21 20 1     113,328    75,552
02-Gampaha     1,637,537 13 18 14 14 7 21 20 1     116,967    77,978
03-Kalutara        897,349 8 10 7 1 8 4 12 11 1     112,169    74,779
04-Mahanuwara     1,049,160 13 12 9 2 11 5 16 13 3       95,378    65,573
05-Matale        379,675 4 5 3 1 4 2 6 6 0       94,919    63,279
06-Nuwara-Eliya        534,150 4 8 4 2 6 3 9 8 1       89,025    59,350
07-Galle        819,666 10 10 7 7 3 10 11 -1     117,095    81,967
08-Matara        623,818 7 8 5 5 3 8 8 0     124,764    77,977
09-Hambantota        462,911 4 7 4 4 2 6 7 -1     115,728    77,152
10-Jaffna        529,239 11 7 4 2 6 3 9 7 2       88,207    58,804
11-Vanni        253,058 3 6 2 1 3 2 5 6 -1       84,353    50,612
12-Batticaloa        365,167 3 5 3 1 4 2 6 5 1       91,292    60,861
13-Digamadulla        465,757 4 7 4 2 6 3 9 7 2       77,626    51,751
14-Trincomalee        256,852 3 4 2 1 3 2 5 4 1       85,617    51,370
15-Kurunegala     1,266,443 14 15 11 11 5 16 17 -1     115,131    79,153
16-Puttalam        553,009 5 8 5 5 2 7 9 -2     110,602    79,001
17-Anuradhapura        636,733 7 9 5 5 3 8 9 -1     127,347    79,592
18-Polonnaruwa        307,125 3 5 3 3 2 5 6 -1     102,375    61,425
19-Badulla        620,486 9 8 5 5 2 7 9 -2     124,097    88,641
20-Monaragala        339,797 3 5 3 3 2 5 6 -1     113,266    67,959
21-Ratnapura        810,082 8 11 7 7 3 10 11 -1     115,726    81,008
22-Kegalle        649,878 9 9 5 1 6 3 9 10 -1     108,313    72,209
ALL  15,044,490 160 196 125 15 140 70 210 210 0       107,461     71,640
 
KEY:        FPP, First-past-the-post; PR , Proportional representation;
NOTES:
* SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS used in allocating 15 of the 140 FPPunits are as follows: (1) All districts should have at least 3 electorates (2) The number of electorates should be at least 50% of number in 1976  (3) multi-member seats should be assigned taking into account 2011 census data (4) Population growth areas within districts such as Dehiattaakandiya should b considered (5) The electros to FPP ratio of each electoral district should be as close to the average as possible. PR allocation criteria: (1) All districts should have at least 2 PR seats (2) Additional PR seats should be added to make the reduction in the total number of MPs from 1976 to no more than one. (3) The elector to MP ratio of each electoral district should as close to the average as possible
** ARTICLE 98 METHOD: Article 98 of the Constitution of Sri Lanka specifies the method for the apportionment of the number of members that each electoral district is entitled to return. According to that directive, each province is allocated 4 electorates and the 4 electorates are apportioned across the electoral districts in each province as per the determination by the last Delimitation Commission. The remaining number of FPP seats are allocated proportionate to the population in each district. Provinces.
*** DIFFERENCE: is the difference between the distribution of MPs across electorates in the present case and the disdistribution had we applied the Artcile 98 method.
www.caffesrilanka.org image # 2
 A. CURRENT SYSTEM  (196+29=225) B. MIXED SYSTEM  (140+70+15=225) NOTES
PR with one bonus sea per electorate (with 25/160 electorates in N&E) FPP:PR = 60:40 (with 22/140 electorates in N&E); total maintained at 225 for comparison purposes.
Table 1A. Seats, FPP (given for comparison only) Table 1B. Seats, FPP CAUTION: The bahaviour of both voters and political parties may change from their behaviours in 2000, 2001m 204 or 2010. However, we feel that these estimates are sufficiently representative for us get some idea about the magnitude and direction of changes one might expect.                                                                                                 KEY:  NA  = not applicable; UPFA = PA/UPFA/EPDP; UNP = UNP/UNF;  JVP = JVP/DNA;  JHU = JHU/SU;  ITAK+ = ACTC/EPRLF/ITAK/TELO/TULF ; SLMC = NUA/SLMC ; OTHER = IND GP 2, Digamadulla in 2000 and UCPF, N-E, 2004                                                                                                                    The distribution of electorates across the electoral districts would vary as the number of electorates decrease from 160 to 150, 140 or 134. The distribution used here tries to keep in line with what seems to be the consensus emerging among political parties. Here we first distributed 125 electorates proportionate to the population. Then we added 15 additional electorates to the set following a set of criteria ordered by priority. FPP allocation criteria: (1) All districts should have at least 3 electorates (2) The number of electorates should be at least 50% of number in 1976  (3) multi-member seats taking into 2011 census data (4) Population growth areas within districts -Dehiaththakandiaya (5) Add electorates to bring down the FPP/elector ratio of distrits with the higher ratios.
To calculate the distribution of FPP seats by year by party, we started with the data reported by the 160 existing polling divisions. To estimate the  distribution for 120, 140 or 150 electorates, we made use of the fact that in seven out of 9 provinces, the only two winning parties were the UPFA and UNP. Therefore the FPP distribution for these seven province was simply changed in proportion to the change in the total number of electorates. Allocations in the North and East provinces require manual adjustments for the 5 electoral districts in these two provinces.                                                                                                              The total number of remainder votes for each electoral district was derived after deducting the votes garnered by FPP winners and those who got les than 5% of the votes. The PR seats for each district were then allocated in proportion to the remainder votes garnered by each party.  The largest remainder method was used to allocate PR seats. Other methods such as the D’Hondt method or its variations should be considered in future calculations.
UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC OTHEr ALL UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC ALL
2000  109    34 0 0 15 2 0               160 2000       98       28 0 0 11 3     140
2001    32  108 0 0 18 2 0               160 2001       28       95 0 0 14 3     140
2004  106    33 0 18 3 0               160 2004       94       28 0 14 4     140
2010  137      9 0 14 0               160 2010     118         9 0 12 1     140
TABLE 2A. Seats, PR with preferential votes TABLE 2B. Seats, PR (Remainder vote method)
UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC OTHER ALL UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC ALL
2000    94    77      8 0    13      3 1               196 2000       14       48 7 0 0 1       70
2001    66    96    13 0    17      4 0               196 2001       44       13 10 0 1 2       70
2004    92    71 7    21      4 1               196 2004       13       46 5 2 2       68
2010  127    51      5    13 0               196 2010         4       56 7 3       70
Table 3A. Seats, National list Table 3B. Seats, National list
UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC OTHER ALL UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC ALL
2000    13    12      2 1 0      1 0                 29 2000 7 6 1 0 1 0 15
2001    11    13      3 0      1      1 0                 29 2001 6 7 1 0 1 0 15
2004    13    11 2      2      1 0                 29 2004 7 6 1 1 0 15
2010    17      9      2      1  – 0                 29 2010 9 4 1 1 15
Table 4A. All seats Table 4B. All seats
UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC OTHER ALL UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC ALL
2000 107 89 10 1 13 4 1 225 2000     119       82         8        –       12         4 225
2001 77 109 16 0 18 5 225 2001       78     115       11        –       16         5 225
2004 105 82 9 23 5 1 225 2004     114       80  –         6       17         6 223
2010 144 60 7 14 225 2010     131       69         8  –       16         1 225
TABLE 5A. Distribution of all seats TABLE 5B. Distribution of all seats
UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC IND ALL UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC ALL
2000 48% 40% 4% 0% 6% 2% 0% 225 2000 53% 36% 4% 0% 5% 2% 225
2001 34% 48% 7% 0% 8% 2% 0% 225 2001 35% 51% 5% 0% 7% 2% 225
2004 47% 36% 4% 10% 2% 0% 225 2004 51% 36% 3% 8% 3% 223
2010 64% 27% 3% 6% 0% 225 2010 58% 31% 4% 7% 225
TABLE 6. Distribution of votes (All island) TABLE 7. CHANGE FROM CURRENT
UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC OTHER ALL UPFA UNP JVP JHU ITAK+ SLMC ALL
2000 45% 40% 6% 1% 2% 2% 0%     8,633,994 2000           12            (7)            (2)            (1)            (1) 0
2001 37% 46% 9% 1% 5% 1% 0%     8,955,869 2001              1              6            (5) 0            (2) 0
2004 46% 38% 0% 6% 7% 2% 0%     9,239,608 2004              9            (2)  NA            (3)            (6)              1
2010 60% 29% 5% 0% 3% 0% 0%     8,033,692 2010         (13)              9              1  NA              2  NA
some losses for JVP and JHU. 2004 ITAK+ 2004 are anamolous. SLMC ok.

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