“Moves to repeal the 13th Amendment would damage Sri Lanka’s future” – Sampanthan
Posted on November 17th, 2012

Asada M  Erpini

Dear Mr. R. Sampanthan
TNA Leader

 Your pronouncement that the moves to repeal the 13th Amendment (to the constitution of Sri Lanka) would damage Sri Lanka’s future, as reported in the media on 16 November, would not surprise any peace-loving Sri Lankan. The tax-paying Sri Lankans, the large majority of whom happen to belong to the Sinhala ethnic group who also are contributing to the salaries and other enviable perks enjoyed by the parliamentarians, including you, are yet to hear a word of praise from you as regards the stupendous achievement of the Sri Lanka government and its armed forces that liberated the near 300,000 Tamil civilians who had been corralled by the LTTE to serve as a human shield.

 Sri Lanka’s future was damaged by the LTTE over the past three decades. Sadly, your group served as the spokesperson for this terrorist gang, and India, the country to which the members of your team run at the drop of a hat  to solve the problems of Sri Lanka’s “”…” not India’s “”…” Tamils are equally responsible for all the bombings and killings that went on during that period.

 Dear Sir, the 13th Amendment is not anything that Sri Lankans ever wanted or asked for. It was a stipulation that was rammed down the throat of the then President of Sri Lanka whose only choice was to say “Yes, sir”, to Rajiv Gandhi who had his warships be anchored off the port of Colombo with his fighter jets hovering over Jaffna.

 Reconciliation is a two-way process. It is you and your colleagues who have not shown that you are ready to treat Sri Lanka as your home country. The large majority of the Sinhala people have been ready to accommodate the minority groups – probably the biggest mistake that they have been doing for centuries – while those of your calibre seem to be adamant on carving out territories for your own people while the rest of Sri Lanka is there for your Tamilians and the Sinhala, Moor, Burgher and Vanniye Eththo communities.

 The hardships that you talk of are not specific to the Tamils whom you claim to represent: they are there for everyone of the 20 million in the country except for a handful who are fortunate to have all the good things in life.

 Reconciliation has to start from you: the Sri Lankan government and its armed forces have already done more than their share.

 Asada M  Erpini

7 Responses to ““Moves to repeal the 13th Amendment would damage Sri Lanka’s future” – Sampanthan”

  1. Kit Athul Says:

    Mr. Asada M. Erpini, your an excellent journalist. Do you really think Sampathan will read this letter? OK he read this letter, then do you think he will respond? No chance. Remember Ananda Sangara wiriting letters to Prabharkaran? “Dear Thambi”. (He was attempting to stop the military advance)The man he gave these letters told the media after the surrender; if he took this letter to Prabhakern, then he would have shot him at point blank range, in front of every body. Then would have blamed the SL army of killing him. What I suggest Mr. Erpini, is you support Jayantha Liyanghe with is case against TNA. If he wins the next stage is file case to jail Sampanthan.

  2. Hiranthe Says:

    I heard this Sampanthan was one of the guys supporting and encouraging the Tamil Surveyors in those days in our Survey Department to change the survey map of Sri Lanka to add Tamil Names to ancient Sinhala villages, roads, tanks etc. in North and East and then later called them as Tamil Homeland.
    These selfish politicians are no different to venomous snakes.

  3. Lorenzo Says:

    Moves to repeal the 13th Amendment would damage Tamil’s future in Sri Lanka.

    Fantastic!

  4. Fran Diaz Says:

    Thank you, Asada.

    More hard facts re the 13-A :

    The 13-A was imposed under Duress on the then JRJ govt. which leaned far west in the COLD WAR times to suit a Cold War actor via India – the “divide & rule” principle, via India. Now the Cold War has finished (1946-1991), but the Tamil Caste Wars have started. We in Sri Lanka do not want to participate in the Tamil Caste Wars, as that is a matter to be sorted out in Tamil Nadu where Caste begins. The UN should help in this regard. There is no recognition of Tamil Caste in Sri Lanka, unless it is self imposed by the Tamils themselves in Tamil only pockets.

    Best remedy for all in Sri Lanka is the DISTRICT as a unit of governance. That would truly enhance a lasting Reconciliation and Peace, plus Development. Also, remove the 13-A via both the Parliament 2/3 vote plus a Referendum, to show the whole world that the People have Lanka have spoken, loud and clear.

    If the Tamil leaders are SINCERE about peaceful settlement of all issues, they would agree to such arrangements.

  5. Ananda-USA Says:

    If the 13th Amendment is MEANINGLESS, as the TNA has pronounced in the past (see SO article below), WHY should REPEAL of the 13-A damage Sri Lanka?

    If the TNA can’t get its OWN STORY STRAIGHT; how can it expect ANYONE ELSE to keep a STRAIGHT FACE observing its antics ?

    The 13th Amendment is MEANINGLESS … we AGREE!

    REPEAL the 13-A; REPEAL it NOW!

    ……………………………..
    13 A meaningless, we rejected it – TNA MP

    SundayObserver.lk
    http://www.sundayobserver.lk/2012/11/18/pol01.asp

    Sajin questions Sumanthiran’s double standards :

    Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran admitted that the 13th Amendment to the Constitution is ‘meaningless’ and that the TNA had rejected it right from the start.

    Parliamentarian Sumanthiran made this statement in Parliament on November 9, though it was not highlighted in the media. “The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution is something that we had rejected right through as being meaningless,” the TNA Member of Parliament told the House.

    UPFA parliamentarian Sajin De Vass Gunawardena questioned Sumanthiran on the TNA’s stance on the 13th Amendment, on the same day. But Sumanthiran interrupted Gunawardena. Vass Gunawardena told Parliament on Friday that he would be making a statement on Sumanthiran’s views expressed on November 9 and requested Sumanthiran to be present in Parliament on Saturday (17). When Vass Gunawardena questioned the TNA MP’s double standards and raised questions on his stance during the second reading of the Budget 2013 yesterday, Sumanthiran was not present in the Chamber.

    Though Sumanthiran was present in the Parliament Lobby, he evaded facing Vass Gunawardena and answering questions on the TNA’s stance on the 13th Ammendment.

    MP Vass Gunawardena said the TNA has not been united in finding a solution to the aspirations of the Tamils as various MPs express different views from time to time. “Sumanthiran tells one thing and his leader R. Sampanthan tells another. Until they are united, it will be difficult to find a solution to the problems of the people in the North and the East,” he said.

    Meanwhile, Sumanthiran had even demanded the abolition of the 13th Amendment since it is meaningless.

    “If not, there will be no purpose in the 13th Amendment remaining in the statute books and it can be abolished,” he wrote to the blog dbsjeyeraj.com on October 28, 2012.

  6. Lorenzo Says:

    Fran,

    “Best remedy for all in Sri Lanka is the DISTRICT as a unit of governance.”

    NO WAY!

    Just imagine we have districts as units of governance. TNA will win Jaffna and Vanni districts as they have ALWAYS won. Then what? We are in the same problem!!

    The problem is TNA/ACTC/ITAK/TULF.

    Think of a way to get rid of them from power.

    Thun Rata system is the solution. TNA will not have enough seats to rule ANYWHERE.

  7. Ananda-USA Says:

    DO NOT DEVOLVE POWER to the Provinces, or to any SUB-NATIONAL regional administrative unit of Sri Lanka.

    DEVOLUTION of POWER to regions dominated by Ethno-Religious groups is a PRESCRIPTION for NATIONAL SUICIDE!

    ONE VOTE for EACH CITIZEN to elect a representative to the National Parliament is SUFFICIENT FRANCHISE for any Law-Abiding citizen.

    Only Separatists-in-Waiting seek to divide the nation into a PATCHWORK of Racist Intolerant Aparthied Bantustans perpetually at war with one-another, and incapable of defending itself.

    REPEAL the FOREIGN-IMPOSED 13-th Amendment; DISSOLVE the Provincial Council System, BAN ALL Communal Political Parties.

    ENFORCE EQUAL RIGHTS for ALL citizens IRRESPECTIVE of Communal Differences!

    BANISH Communal Diversity from the PUBLIC SPHERE of Governance to the Private Sphere of Peoples Private Lives, and make Governance BLIND to Communal Differences.

    ENFORCE EQUAL RESPONSIBILITIES/DUTIES due to the nation and its people FROM ALL Citizens!

    These DUTIES include the duty to abide by the laws of the land, the duty to abstain from TREASONOUS activities, and the duty to SERVE in the DEFENCE of the nation.

    EQUAL RIGHTS should go hand-in-hand with EQUAL RESPONSIBILITIES.

    NO Citizen who SHIRKS the EQUAL RESPONSIBILITIES towards the nation should be granted the right to ENJOY the EQUAL RIGHTS & BENEFITS due from Citizens to the NATION.

    The Patriot Act of the United States was enacted after the September 11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center to strengthen the laws against TREASON to protect the United States. Many US citizens have been prosecuted and imprisoned for anti-national activities under the Patriot Act.

    Let us remember that the terrorist attack on the first World Trade Center took place in Colombo, Sri Lanka; not in New York, United States.

    It is HIGH TIME that the GOSL passed a PATRIOT ACT and took action against Sri Lankan citizens engaged in TREASONOUS activities against the Nation, in the PAST, the PRESENT. and the FUTURE.

    Sri Lanka’s need to PROTECT itself is NO DIFFERENT from the need of the United States to defend itself. Sri Lanka’s citizens are just as human as the citizens of the United States, and their blood is just as red.

    What is good for the goose, should be good for the gander !

    Let Sovereign Sri Lanka ACT NOW to DEFEND itself BETTER!

    ……………………………..
    Sumanthiran’s ‘useless’ description of 13-A rocks country

    By Chamikara Weerasinghe and – Priyanka Kurugala
    DailyNews.lk
    November 19, 2012

    TNA MP M A Sumanthiran’s description of the 13th Amendment “as meaningless and something which had been continuously rejected by his party,” has taken the country by storm. “The 13th Amendment to the Constitution is something that we had rejected right through as being meaningless,” he told Parliament during the recent Budget debate.

    The words are reverberating in the civil society and political space as indicative of the TNA’s doublespeak.

    Economic Development Deputy Minister Lashman Yapa Abeywardena for instance, also recalled how present TNA leader R Sampanthan wanted the 13th Amendment “thrown in the dustbin.”

    “Now they are using the 13th Amendment to attack the government,” he said. The deputy minister said although the 13th Amendment was approved by a two thirds majority in Parliament, it failed as a solution to the national problem and neither did it address the problems of the Tamil people.

    He said if the 13th Amendment is to be repealed, an appropriate mechanism should be put in place that addresses the grievances of the Tamils. “The government is ready to decentralize power. It has to be done with the approval of all political parties,” the deputy minister said.

    Disaster Management Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said that Tamil National Alliance Parliamentarians have rejected the 13th Amendment to the constitution as “meaningless” and “useless” because they persist in pursuing a policy of separation, as against a policy of devolution. Amaraweera said that TNA MP M A Sumanthiran’s apparent rejection of the 13th Amendment was based on the views of LTTE sympathizers and the pro-LTTE Tamil diaspora.

    “This is the result of a sinister agenda to divide the country,” the minister said.

    “If we are to replace the 13th Amendment, there should be a new mechanism for devolution of power,” Minister Amaraweera said.

    “President Mahinda Rajapaksa once said a scheme of power devolution may be given to the public, and not to terrorists and nor to those who try to separate the country under the banner of ‘people’s aspirations,” he said.

    “If power should be devolved, it should be done in a manner that would empower the grassroots.

    Devolution of power should take place to build a truly integrated country which is devoid of any communal or religious hatred,” he said.

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