Colombo (Agenzia Fides) - Participate in the vote with conscience and enthusiasm, choosing candidates who care about the common good of the country, considering challenges such as economic and social development, reconciliation, the stop to ethnic and religious violence, illegal land occupation. These are the criteria and recommendations that the Church in Sri Lanka offers to the faithful in view of the presidential elections on November 16th.
Caritas Sri Lanka has recommended and encouraged all Christians and Catholics in the Country to take part in the vote with enthusiasm, the right and duty of every citizen. Caritas Sri Lanka has also stated that, from now to the vote, awareness programs and discussions on issues affecting society will be carried out to educate leaders, associations and people of the Catholic community, as announced by the Commission for Justice and Development human, within Caritas, offering some guidelines for the presidential elections.
Moreover, in all the Churches of the island, in the family and in the ecclesial communities, Catholics recite the Holy Rosary every day and offer constant prayers so that an honest leader can emerge from the polls, and guide the country wisely. In the light of the Social Doctrine of the Church, and recognizing the current political confusion, the Caritas Justice and Peace Commission recalled the crucial social and economic issues faced by the population of this Country.
The Commission also stated that the drafting of the new Constitution must take place "by consulting all interested parties and guaranteeing the decentralization of power, to satisfy the desires of all communities".
"Free and independent judicial and legal structures to guarantee justice to people" and central challenges are stressed: good governance, the dignity of all people, social justice, equality, employment issues, care of ecology and media transparency".
Other issues raised concern migration policy and human trafficking, welfare measures for children, the correct use of natural resources, the rehabilitation of people under the influence of drugs and harmful substances.
Sri Lanka is a multi-ethnic country with 22 million inhabitants, mostly Buddhists, but includes Christian, Muslim and Hindu minorities. Muslims represent almost 10% of the population; Christians 7.4% (6.1% Catholics and 1.3% Protestants). (SD) (Agenzia Fides, 28/10/2019)