Posted on November 26th, 2010


It has been reported that during the recently concluded Budget, there were fewer number of MPS  (mostly government MPs) in attendance  at the Parlimantary sessions. This has been acute problem at the Sri Lankan Parliament for many years.  Before the General Elections, these potential MPs  spent their time and resources to get elected.  After being elected a MP, why are they so lazy, lethargic to attend the Sri Lanka’s highest legislative body?  

What possible reasons can be adduced by these “ƒ”¹…”grass fed yearlings(GFY)’ for their failure to attend the Parliament?  “Sorry  Mr Speaker,   I had no car today, because my wife took both cars to go to the Airport to fetch her relatives”? “Sorry  Mr Speaker, I had a meeting with Minister of Education to get my children transferred to a College in Colombo”;  “Sorry Mr Speaker, I had a food poisoning after  a marathon party last night”, ” Sorry Mr Speaker,  I had to organize a Passport to travel to China for  3 weeks study tour” etc.   It was not due to their popularity, honesty, integrity or hardwork  that most of these government GFY’s were elected by the popular vote.   They were lucky and must thank the President Mahinda Rajapakse. 

The MPs have been provided all facilities in Colombo for them to be able to attend the Parliament regularly.  There should be no excuse  for poor attendance or punctuality.  In a private Company, after 3 warnings, an employee will be shown the Main Exit Gate.

These MPs are paid their massive salaries and allowances, whether or not they attend the Parliament. There is some justification that due to the tedious work to the community, some MPs  might not be able to attend the Parliament, but that should not be an excuse.  The MPs must plan ahead and manage their time.


1.The government must regulate that all MPs must attend the Parliament  during its sessions, except  for MPs own  inability to attend due to his/her own  illness, supported by a medical certificate from a Registered  Practitioner. The number of sick leave days must be regulated, perhaps 9 per year;

 2 All MPs must Clock-In-Out daily at the Parliament.  There are several software packages for this purpose.   The well known Bundy Clock system is foolproof system.   In this system, to check in-out,  the person concerned is given a unique number which should be  entered on the monitor and then place his/her Thumb on the panel. The system will recognize the person, matched with the pre-programmed Thumb impression and will record the arrival or check out.  This information is then automatically transmitted to the Pay Roll.  The Bundy Clock system is compatible with GenPro, HR3, MicroPay etc.  It is essential  that an appropriate technical study should be conducted  comparing competitive quotations from reputable suppliers, bearing mind the compatibility  with the existing Payroll system;

 3.The MPs  salaries and allowances will then be calculated based on the number of days they worked, just like any other employee.    The  entire system for 225 GFY’s will cost less than US10,000. The system has 48 hour battery back up, and could be converted from main power supply to generators, instantly in the event of power failure;

 4.The Constitution must be amended to expel MPs who are habitually absent from the Parliament without an acceptable reason.

 If Sri Lanka is to be become the “Wonder of Asia”,  the MPs must be disciplined. If the MPs have other business interests over-riding the essential duties of an MP,  they should be sacked and send back to where they come from, without wasting public funds and precious time.

  There is absolutely no need to talk too much or give warnings to MPs.  The President must take immediate action and put in place a simple system  that will enhance the productivity and reduce costs.


  1. De Costa Says:

    Mr. Dissanakaya,
    How many times Mr. Sanath Jayasuriya attended parliament ? Sorry Mr. Speaker I am playing cricket in England.

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