Colombo, Nov 15 (IANS): The European Union (EU) Election Observation Mission (EOM) will monitor Saturday’s presidential elections Sri Lanka and also analyse social media usage and fake news, authorities said on Thursday.
EOM Chief Observer Marisa Matias told the media that the analysis of social media and fake news was still new to the organisation but they would be devoting a lot of attention to it, reports Xinhua news agency.
Matias said the data would be published for use in Sri Lanka’s future polling.
According to EOM Deputy Chief Officer Dimitra Ioannou, this is the sixth time that the EU observers will be monitoring elections in Sri Lanka, following their observations for the polls in previous years.
The organization arrived in Sri Lanka on October 22 at the request of Sri Lanka’s Elections Commission.
A total of 80 election observers from member states of the EU have been deployed across all nine of Sri Lanka’s provinces.
For the first time in Sri Lankan history, the ballot paper will be long due to a record breaking 35 candidates in the fray.
Of the 35 hopefuls, Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna’s candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa; and the ruling United National Party’s Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa, who is contesting as the National Democratic Front contender, have emerged as the two favourites.