Candidates paid $303,610 for Fb ads in 2020 Poll – Report
By Thameenah Razeek
Executive Director of the People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL), Rohana Hettiarachchi said that the only reason why politicians spend money limitlessly and wastefully on their campaigns is because there are no proper laws to regulate expenses.
Drawing attention to a report published by a research organisation analysing how much politicians spend on their campaigns on Facebook, Hettiarachchi said that requests to the Government to introduce a law to regulate campaign expenses had been neglected.
According to the report, candidates had spent USD 303,610 for Facebook advertising (19,717 Parliamentary Poll related ads) with Samagi Jana Balawegaya Leader Sajith Premadasa having spent the most amount of money on Facebook advertising according to the latest figures. The publicly accessible report monitors money spent on advertising on Facebook by candidates and political parties for the 5 August Poll. The report noted that Premadasa has spent USD 21,737, followed by Sunethra Samarakoon (USD 19,063), Angajan Ramanathan (USD 16,306), Dr. Harsha de Silva (USD 11,019), Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe (USD 10,315), Thilanga Sumathipala (USD 8,063), S.M. Marikkar (USD 7,658), Akila Viraj Kariyawasam (USD 5,359) and Wimal Weerawansa (USD 4,735).