An open letter to all Sinhala Politicians in this country. From a Sinhala Patriot
Posted on May 6th, 2017

Dr Sudath Gunasekara. President Mahanuwara Sinhala Bauddha Jesta  Purwesiyange Sanvidhanaya and EX: Perm Sec to Prime Minister Mrs Sirimavo Bandaranayaka 2017.5.4.

I request all our present day Unpatriotic Politicians to learn a bitter lesson at least from these two great World Leaders: Russian President Vladimir Putin and Australian Prime Minister John Howard

(The Statements of the Two Leaders are given at the end of this note)

Patriotism is a quality that should be in the blood of leaders of any country. Though we had such Kings and Leaders in ancient times, it is a tragedy and a pity too that we don’t have any in modern times. But almost all other countries in the world do have such Great Leaders. Now starting from the far- East look at Japan, China, Burma, Singapore, India, Pakistan, Israel, Germany, England, France and USA to name a few only. All these people always put the country before self.  But our leaders and their teams from top to bottom put self before the country. The rating I would say is 100% self and the country almost nil. Whether one likes it or not that is the real truth. Truth, and nothing but the truth. There may be one or two exceptions.

How unfortunate we are not to have had any, in recent times except Mahinda Rajapaksa, with few of his ardent followers, though they also could not still get fully released from the Minority vote trap and hanging on to it, like the proverbial hungry fox that went after a Goat expecting its dangling testicle to fall, without realizing finally what really will happen to the fox. In that story only one fox got seriously kicked by the goat. But in our case a whole nation has got fatally kicked for 70 years for the follies of power hungry, avaricious and selfish politician and their lack of any vision of a vibrant and free Nation. In fact I have told this story to MR over the phone on 30th April last year and advised him not to go after Tamil and Muslim votes anymore and concentrate only on Sinhala votes (75%) but who do not have a leader. His home place being Magama, the birth place of Dutugemunu the epic hero of the Sinhala nation, he is the best man to give leadership to fill that coveted vacuum.

Sinhala people badly want a leader. They were looking for that historic leader even in early 1950s as the UNP government was not fulfilling the aspirations and great expectations of a free new and a resurgent nation. They were talking of Diyasena Kumaraya  in early 1950s to rescue the Sinhala nation. I do not know whether he got the point I was trying to drive at and the message to give. I hope he will at least now, try to understand what I saidand what the masses expect of him  in the light of the unprecedented crowed that poured in to the Gall face green.

I rated MR as a patriotic Leader for three reasons. First, for his undisputed chivalry and historic role in defeating the30 year LTTE terrorist war In 2009 May. Second his rejection of the request made by the West and India to stop the war at the last moment and the brave manner he faced that critical situation taking a big risk even on his life, and his reply to the British and French delegates. Third he is the only Leader who openly said that there are no minorities in this country. Had he also said that we have only one nation in this country and that is Sinhala the people of the Sinhale-the Land of the Sinhala people- that was handed over by a Convention to the British in 1815 that claimed an unbroken record of nearly 2500 years.

I do not want to comment on other fellows who are in leadership positions at the moment in different capacities. The issue here is the absence of a Sinhala Leader. Tamils and Muslims have enough leaders. Even buffaloes have Leaders, as Ellawala Medhananda Thera once said. But we Sinhalese, a nation once who had World class leaders like Dutugemunu, Parakramabahu, Wijayabahu and in recent times Keppetipola and Rajasinha.

Unfortunately today we don’t have a single true national leader. All our present day so-called leaders who come to leadership positions are concerned only about their power, position and wealth.

Therefore I am addressing this note to all present day politicians and inviting them to read the following two great statements by two patriotic World Leaders and Learn from them as to how a true Leader of a country should rule his country. More particularly I am addressing this note to President Sirisena as the incumbent  President of this country as he has been voted in to power at least by about 4.7 Million Sinhala Buddhists in this country out of a total of 10.5 million Sinhala voters, of whom the balance 5.8 voted for MR.

If not for the 4.7 million Sinhala UNP votes he would never have been elected as the President, in spite of the Tamil and Muslim Communal block vote he polled to which he always says very grateful. Beside that he is the President of all people of whom 75 % constitute Sinhalese, the true sons of the soil, who are the real architects of the civilization of this country and who had sacrificed their sweat, blood and lives in millions against foreign invasion from south Indian  in ancient times and the Western Colonial powers from 1505 up 1948 in defense of their Motherland.

Sinhalese are the true Bbhoomiputras of this land. This is not negotiable at any forum and is inalienable in the name of his pet mantram national reconciliation he is desperately trying to impose on the Community of Mahasangha, the guardian gods of the Sinhala Nation and this countr.y

Historically the present day Tamils in the north are the descendants of slaves brought by the Portuguese, Dutch and British since 1505 to work on their projects like tobacco farms etc and left behind as destitute on someone else’s soil. Some of them are the remnants of earlier invaders and some illicit immigrants Kallathonis who have come in search of greener pastures. The greed for this country Indians had in their minds is proved by the Malayalam saying ‘Eelam Kandavar illan kanukka illei”( one who has seen Lanka will never come home). The Tamils on the central hills were the descendants of indentured labour slaves brought by the British to work on their Coffee and tea plantations and left behind as an ugly legacy of colonial rule. Just like what they did all over south Asia and Africa. This is one way how the colonial powers disrupted the socio economic cohesion of these countries and left behind an eternal headache.

Their importing these slaves had two main objectives. Firstly it was economic, cheap labour for plantations. Second, for destroying the age old unique Sinhala Buddhist civilization. That is why they introduced a separate law for these slaves called the Thesavalamei, which is defined in legal jargon as the law applicable to the Malabar inhabitants of the peninsular of Jaffna’ which they extended it to other parts of the Island as well through their own judicial mechanisms. They did not stop at that. For Muslims they introduced the Muslim Law. But for the native they replaced the local legal system with English and Roman Dutch Laws. Meanwhile they also brought their religion Catholicism with its variances of Christianity ad Missionary activities were intensified  all over the country with State  patronage and large scale conversions were made. They also used these Missions to propagate western values and English education and Tamil Vellala people as a super social group like Ponnambalan Arunachalam Ramanathan to take over Sri Lanka in future with special privileges to Tamil area For example by 1845 out of a total of 103 for the whole Island 45 schools were given to Jaffna District with under the supervision of American Missions Their education programme also took care to destroy the country’s native Pirivena system of education. Added to this and various other administrative military and judicial mechanisms they also sold arrack to villagers even using mobile bullock carts. Now you see how the well-designed long term conspiracy had been built up over the years by these colonial rascals to destroy the Sinhala Buddhist Civilization in this country and build up political and social instability.

Resistance was made by the natives .But they were brutally and mercilessly suppressed. The 1818 and 1848 suppressions were the highlights of such native uprisings.  This country was ruled by the gun. So until 1948 natives were powerless. Leaders who agitated were killed or imprisoned.

But my question is as to what our politicians did after independence.  Why didn’t they assert in and after 1948. Why didn’t they get at least the original name of the country ‘Sinhale’ restored in place of Ceylon. Why did they accept the suggestion made by Governor Lord Soulbury the name UNP for the political party that was started to take over the Dominion status. The word United National Party directly implied the presence of many nations that was cleverly introduced to the Constitution to create divisions within the Sri Lankan community. They also introduced the concept of minority for the first time in to the constitution under sec 29, adding fuel to the simmering communal fire in the country. Prior to 1815 there was only one nation Sinhala in this country. Why they didn’t get that restored. Why didn’t they ask the British to hand over vacant possession of our Motherland by taking Indian Tamil labour on estates back to either India or Britain as they were British citizens before 1948. We remember even Trincommallee Harbor and the air base at Ratmalana were not taken back in 1948. They were freed only 9 years later by Bandaranayaka in 1957. Why didn’t they make Sinhala the Official Language of the country, that was the Official language here for over 2600 years as soon as they got Independents. I presume they should have got these conditions included in the declaration of 1947. I also wonder as to what politicians understood by freedom without any of these things. I think they were mesmerized by the term self- rule at that time like what has happened to the present day politicians who try to see the world through one word ‘Reconciliation’. All these mediocre politicians at all times get the wood lost for the tree.

Next question is what have been done for 70 years by our politicians to make this country a free, Sovereign, Independent and vibrant nation. What are they doing even now? Divided in to opposing political camps armed with utterly irrelevant political ideologies like communism (JVP) Just look at the way things are happening at present in the country. Quarelling among themselves they are competing to sell the countries assets to China and India and foreign Multinational Companies. Look at the squabbles between the parties and intraparty disputes. The way politicians behave in Parliament and rob public assets with impunity. I can’t comprehend as to how the Prime Minister of  a country appoints one of his friend, who is not even a citizen of this country a Tamil violating the Constitution of the country even against the wishes of the Executive President of the country with impunity and defend him to the hilt when he is caught red handed robbing over 15oo billion as ongoing inquiries have revealed.

In this backdrop I ask these simple questions any one can understand. Is there a President in this country at present, Is here a Prime minister. Is there a Parliament; a Speaker; a leader of Opposition. Whither Law and order had gone: Where is justice. Is there a Public Service or are there public servants anywhere in the Island. Where is the Government and where is the Governance though they talk of Good Governance. Isn’t it total anarchy hat prevail all over the country today. I feel that Sirisena Government has already come to a total stand still now. If it has not very soon we will be able to witness it very soon I think.  I don’t think he knows whether he stands on his head or feet the way he does things these days.

What are the reasons for this unfortunate situation. Partly it is the fault of the people who have put these useless fellows to power. But mainly the fault is with the Leaders. They only think about themselves and never about the country or the people. None of them I think know their responsibilities by the country or the people. Obviously none is patriotic and honest Most of our politicians are better suited to a human zoo rather than an August Assembly like the Parliament. Now just look at the way the President behave and act. People think he is only a puppet of Ranil and some unseen vicious forces. None of his orders other that orders to withdraw MRs security, are effective The speaker is only a UNP devotee. Even yesterday when Dinesh complained regarding the withdrawal of MR’s security t what is the answer he gave. He said he will discuss with the President and PM and let the Parliament know. Is nt it responsibility to safeguard the interests of its. Specially the security of an ex-President like MR whose life is in real danger from various quarters like LTTE and political enemies both here and abroad. It could be even Raw or CIA. Who knows. One thing Mr Speaker I can assure you that this country will never have a leader of MR’s caliber and leadership qualities for another 500 years President Sirisena and Ranil will do everything possible to destroy him  Because MR is their arc political rival and the only threat. His disappearance will certainly be the biggest blessing for both. As such it is your responsibility to look after his security as the Speaker of the House where is a n important member. As the Speaker you must look at him as a National asset to the country that should be protected at any cost. If something happen to him due to this security lapse please not that you along with the President and PM will have to be fully responsible to the country and the people

Please also note that I am not a political dependent or a henchman of MR. No have I got any personal benefit from him either. Like the present President he also has not listen to good advice people like has ever given either. But Still I value him and Gota and like them for their chivalry, patriotism and the way they handled the so-called invincible LTTE and the colonial and Indian LTTE proxies and the massive infrastructure network they have achieved in Colombo as well as all over the country particularly the network of highways ,bridges and harbos and Hambantota Airport.

This is why I want all of you people to read the following two statements and learn a lesson at least from them as to your responsibilities by the country and the people who have voted you to power I am making this special request to you as a man with a distinguished background to take care of MR as invaluable asset of this country and advice the PM and President as to how they should think and act.


Conclusion

You have two options

Option 1

 To tell all Tamils and Muslims brothers to follow this advice and continue in politics with or without their blessings

Option 2

Not to do that, perish as an extinct tribe in course of time or quit politics and live as ordinary citizens leaving room for some patriotic Sinhala men and women to do the job. I have a strong feeling that someone will do it after reading this note.

Now I ask the final question from our Leaders and all Sinahala Politicians. Have you all read these two statements in between lines and understood fully what the message these two great Leaders have given to any minority anywhere in the world who are trying to create unnecessary problems and rob other people’s countries.

So sit down and patiently and carefully and seriously too think as to how are you going to apply this principle to this country and how are you going to get rid of the Tamil and Muslim nuisance and bring back the ancient glory, unity and prosperity to Mother Lanka.  If you can’t change your present attitude of going after the Tamil and Muslim goats for the hanging vote behind, then for heaven’s sake please say good bye to politics for good and make room for some patriotic men and women to save the Sinhala nation, this paradise Island and the Sasanaya for the sake of posterity.

Why don’t you also clearly and boldly tell this to Tamils and Muslims in Sri Lanka that this is our country, our culture and our law and asked them to adjust or go back to their countries if they can’t adjust accordingly  to back to their heaven in Tamilnadu which is the traditional Homeland of Tamils all over the world without trying to rob our motherland and destroy the Sinhala Nation, country and the Sambuddha Sasana

Why don’t you ask them to follow the footsteps of  present day so-called  Karave and salagama  Sinhala Buddhist community in the South Western Coastal belt of the Island who are definitely the best Sinhala Buddhists in this country who are supposed to be descendants of immigrants from South India, more particularly Kerala in the medieval times.

Mr President this is the best and the only solution to your pet reconciliation theory that will bring sustainable peace and prosperity to all in this country. The theory of so-called devolution, decentralization of power, under whatever system like a Federal or con federal or any other,  will never work. I can vouch for certain that it will lead to more problems and the remedy will be worse than the existing malady.

Siddhirastu !

17 Responses to “An open letter to all Sinhala Politicians in this country. From a Sinhala Patriot”

  1. Christie Says:

    Please read about Nehru-Kotalawala agreement. That lead to funding Banada by India and Indian Colonial Parasites forming the SLFP and 1956 start of the Genocide of the Sinhalese.

  2. RohanJay Says:

    I agree with you on Vladimir Putin, but not John Howard.
    John Howard is D****HE. Nothing even remotely redeeming about John Howard.
    To have John Howard in the same sentence as Putin is an insult to Putin!
    All Australian PMs with maybe few exceptions are white racist anglo saxon xenophobes! Like their white racist British anglo saxon cousins in Britain.

  3. Charles Says:

    Sudath, This has to be drilled into Yahaplanayas heads. Problem with countries like ours is that we cannot assert our rights as, if we do whole of the Western world will land on us with all accusations of human right violations and demanding reconciliation with the minorities and send American, British , German women to teach our people how to live with minorities and teach the Tamils languages, dramas, theatres and what not as if Sinhala people do not exist. They will accuse Sinhala as racists .
    That is why politicians are afraid to speak up for the Sinhala and say this is the country of the Sinhala. Where as the Tamils have every right to condemn the Sinhala and call as names as Wigneswaran, Mano Ganeshan and Sumanthiran say; Sumnthiran has the guts to tell in open TV debates that Article 9 in the Constitution which protects Buddhism should be removed and Yahapalanaya goons are even ready to do it for a stupid reconciliation.

    I blame President Rajapakse for not having abolished the TNA along with the elimination of terrorism, remove the 13 amendment from the Constitution and did not do so much of development work in the North and East.

  4. Charles Says:

    I mean I blame President Rajapakse for developing the North so much. Are they grateful for that ?

  5. Fran Diaz Says:

    During the last year of the MR govt. only some 24% of the money given to the Northern Prov Council was used. Was this to create an impression to the foreign govts that the MR Govt did not take care of the North, after the war with the LTTE ?
    Cheap tricks by Tamil leaders mislead Tamil people of Lanka !

  6. Lorenzo Says:

    What will happen IF Modi suffers what Rajiv suffered when he INVADED SL in 1987?

    Rajiv was YOUNG and agile. OLD Modi is not.

    That will send a POWERFUL MESSAGE to Endia and the world ENDIA is NOT WELCOMES in SL.

  7. Fran Diaz Says:

    Say NO to all violence !

    It is time for Rational Thinking, a win-win situation for all.

  8. Ananda-USA Says:

    I don’t blame MR for developing the North and East after the war; but I do blame him for not labelling the TNA as the LTTE proxy, not asserting that ALL Sri Lankans can settle anywhere within the nation, and not pursuing a POLICY of Sinhala settlement in these areas.

    I uderstand why he could not REPEAL the 13A immediately, but he did not give Police and Land powers to the Provinces either, mindful that it would only embolden the defeated separatists.

    He hoped that development of the war-zone would encourage the Tamil Community to abandon separatism and join hands with the Sinhalese people as ONE people of ONE country. I am certain that he planned to REPEAL the 13A as soon as this goal was achieved and Tamil opposition was allayed.

    But, he was not to get that opportunity. He miscalculated the INGRAINED Racism of the Tamils, who took the oppotrinity to demonize the victorious MR/UPFA govt and to work towards regime change. The Tamil Community never accepted MR’s invitation to participate in the PSC, the Parliamentary Commision to achieve a consensus.

    On THE POSITIVE SIDE of what happened on Jan 8, 2017, is that MR can claim that the Tamil.Community REJECTED his offers, and he is NO LONGER BOUND by his promise to implement the 13A, or even a 13A+.

    After a PATRIOTIC GOSL is RESTORED, he SHOULD REPEAL the 13A and the 19A, DISSOLVE the Provincial Council System as INIMICAL to the UNITARY status of Sri Lanka and PRESERVING PEACE between its communities, an UNBEARABLE BUREAUCRATIC BURDEN on the people, and an INSURMOUNTABLE BARRIER to Nationsl Development that cuts across Provincial boundaries.

    Instead, he should RECREATE a District System of Administration under National Government Controlley, without ELECTED local representatives, and led by District Governors appointed by the National Government.

    The Executive Presidency should be STRENGTHENED and TERM LIMITS REMOVED for the President and a position of Vice President created.. The post of Prime Minister should be ELIMINATED, but the position of Speaker if ghe House should be retained. The House should have the sole power to raise taxes and allocate funds for government operations submitted by the Executive branch of which under the President.

    A Senate composed of ONE ELECTED Senator from each District can be created as the Upper House of Parliament which much approve laws initiated and submitted to it for approval by the Lower House of Commons. In thus way, the Districts would have equal representation whereas the number of Membets of Parliament woild be proportional to hhr number of voters in each electoral district. In this way, less populous areas would get more representation in the Senate than in the House.

    This LEAN structure of government would provide sufficient FRANCHISE for the most jaded of Democrats, while ELIMINATING UNNECESSARY levels of COSTLY BUREAUCRATIC government, PREVENTING the GROWTH OF SEPARATISM-PRONE Provincial Councils, and ENABLING a STRONG President and Natonal Government capable of resisting foreign pressures and holding the nation together.

  9. ranjit Says:

    I doubt any Sinhala politician will read this very valuable article concerning our Sinhala population. We don’t have politicians like those days who fought for the rights of the Sinhalese and for the SINHALA land now except handful. Only politician i know of who loves this nation is Mahinda Rajapaksa. He stood for the Sinhalese without fear. He did what others couldn’t do it for thirty years. He stopped the cruel barbaric Prabakaran and the war. Isn’t it enough? Prabakaran was born to kill the Sinhalese and destroy our Sinhala identity. He was trained, financed and given war materials by Indian parasites. So what is good about Indians, how can we call them our friends? For me it’s hard to call India is our friend.

    We need a Sinhala buddhist leader to lead us and bring back our proud identity and history and bring our nation back to real democracy and freedom. Mahinda Rajapaksa showed his capabilities though he had mistakes. I hope he will correct those mistakes and rule this land for the satisfaction of all citizens alike if given a chance again. True patriots to our nation must unite together to oust this horrible three rattle snakes and their henchmen as soon as possible and restore a good clean government of patriots who loves and care the Sinhalese and the SINHALA land. Buddhism should be the main religion and buddhist priests must get their proper place in this country not sharia or other religious identities. If minorities decide to live with us as citizens they can do so by respecting our laws,flag and the culture if not they can leave and live with their ancestors abroad. Greedy Sinhala politicians must read this article and should decide which side they will support in this most crucial and concerned issue for the Sinhalese. This will be the moment to show their true colours to the people in this country. Stand together to protect the SINHALA nation from current yamapalaka traitors and liars.

  10. Charles Says:

    Yes Ranjit, the problem is how to get to the Sinhala people. Most of them do not even read News Papers. I once sugested to LSSP that they prepare leaflets on different pressing political issues,one subject in one leaflet in good large print, not long but short that the people will read. A leaflet campaign.

    I wonder whether we could interest the JO on such a leaflet campaign.

  11. Ratanapala Says:

    Spineless gadawila Sirisena can never be trusted. With Australian bribery case and perhaps with Panama papers he is severely compromised and may be even blackmailed by the pansies. For Sirisena occupying the position of President is more important than anything in his life. He will betray his country, religion and name it anything to hold on to the presidency. If he had an iota of concern for the forward march of the nation under Mahinda Rajapakse he wouldn’t have betrayed the SLFP the way he did and agree to being the common candidate.

    Mahinda did many mistakes, but there is no leader in sight except Gotabhaya who can come close to him to guide and navigate the ship of the Nation. In Sri Lanka there is a dearth of leadership material. This becomes obvious when one sees the squirming gadawilas in the current political landscape who aspire to be the President of Sri Lanka in the future. Rajitha Senaratne, S B Dissanayake, Sajith Premadasa and even Bada Nimal Siripala aspire to be President of Sri Lanka one day not to mention Ranil Ponil.

    This is why Mahinda is still important despite his political warts. We need a reformed Mahinda and if not Gotabhaya to lead the nation. They only have mass appeal and necessary credentials!

    Patriots have heeded the call of Mahinda and thronged Gall Face Green on May Day. What can spineless earthworm Aappaya and Ponil say now. These are ordinary people. They have not come to get a party cap or a shirt – or to get entertained with hooch and sing songs. They are ordinary people – that is the difference. Lies and slander have not yielded the wanted outcome. After two years no, nothing, zilch to show to the people. Ponil must find out how many disgruntled UNPers have now changed sides.

    There is no point in holding onto faded and threadbare rag tag – the SLFP. It is time, like his father, Mahinda left the dying SLFP in the hands of the Aappaya and Choura Regina to give the final rights and bury for ever. He must lead to form the New Party so that he can get rid of all the useless backbiting vermin that he had with him earlier – Laxman Yapa, Mahinda Samarasinghe, Zoysa, Nimal Siripala, Susil Premajayantha, Jayasekara, Thilanga, Mahinda Samaraweera, Dilan Perera to name only a few.

    A new party must come out with new blood – a more educated, energetic and mature set of patriotic politicians. Vyyath Maga must attract more potential political leaders – many can come from the Armed Forces for they have proven leadership qualities. However they need to be educated on India, Asian and world politics and their relevant for Sri Lanka.

    The nation needs Mahinda and Gotabhaya at all costs. Jada Palanaya will everything to give them the last rites! Citizens beware. It is time all those who have got hoodwinked by Jada Palanaya lies – from all parties – SLFP, UNP and other rally behind Mahinda for a peaceful and prosperous Sri Lanka.

  12. ranjit Says:

    I agree with your idea 100% Charles. You have been in the political scene for a long time and i know very well that you have connections with these guys and it won’t be difficult for you to contact JO, or LSSP or wimal or Gamampila party and suggest your idea. It’s the only way our message can go through to the ordinary people. We need to educate them if not they will just stay looking other side untill everything is over. Yamapalakayo knows how to trick the innocent people in my country with their fairytale stories. This is the worst habitual government we had in our history. It has to go Charles. It has to go. Patriots and the ordinary citizens must support Mahinda Rajapaksa to get rid of this evil Yamapalanaya government as soon as possible.

  13. Charles Says:

    Ranjirt, No I do not know these people. It was long time ago I had contacts with LSSP. However I posted this sugestion in the face books of Udaya Gamnpila, Wimal Weerawansa and Dullas Alahapperuma. I wonder whether any thing will materialise. That is a possible way of keeping the ordinary people informed.

    But there are still those who criticise the foprmer government despite all they had done as against nothing done by this Government. See Face the Nation of the 17th April for instance, which I just finished watching.

  14. ranjit Says:

    Anyhow​ Charles keep on writing as you do always through lanka web and try to send our message to the ordinary people through any means so that we can prepare the people to fight our enemies in the future. Good luck my brother. Our enemies are very strong but we need to be more stronger to combat these traitors and win.

  15. Fran Diaz Says:

    Unfortunately, ever since Independence, Lanka has been forced into some sort of ‘strightjacket’ and the leaders MADE to act according to the will of various strong powers from abroad. Some internal weaknesse added to the unsavory brew.

    INDIA manages to keep the country functioning due to the Indian Administrative Service (IAS). Sri Lanka too functioned well with the SLAS in place – we must bring back that system. An educated SLAS is essential for smooth day to day adminstrative work here. There is too much power right now in the wrong hands, i.e. a virtually Fear run, over Funded & Fed Parliament, also an Exec PM who has a bad past record of Deshadrohi action, etc.

    The good forces we know to give a fair deal to all in Lanka while keeping the peace with foreign countries is Pres MR & Other PATRIOTIC forces.

  16. Ananda-USA Says:

    Constitutional proposals contrary to promises given by Prez, PM-NJC

    Island.lk
    May 7, 2017, 10:44 pm

    By Shamindra Ferdinando

    The National Joint Committee (NJC) has alleged that recently unveiled constitutional proposals are at variance with repeated assurances given by both President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe regarding matters of crucial national importance, including the status of Buddhism.

    The NJC alleges that controversial proposals are contained in an interim report of the Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly tasked with the constitution making process.

    Constitutional affairs expert Manohara de Silva, PC, said that in the wake of strong public criticism of the Report on Public Representations on Constitutional Reform (Lal Wijenayake Committee) and reports of Six Sub Committees, the government had reassured that foremost place would be given to Buddhism.

    Addressing the media at the National Library and Documentation Services Board, attorney-at-law de Silva flayed the yahapalana government for seeking to deprive Buddhism of its foremost place, do away with unitary status of the Constitution and transform Sri Lanka to nine federal governments.

    The lawyer pointed out that in accordance with the repeated promises given by yahapalana leaders, the Steering Committee should not have interfered with Article 9 meant to ensure Buddhism the foremost place while assuring to all religions the rights granted by Articles 10 and 14(1)(e). Instead, the Steering Committee had made six recommendations in respect of Buddhism/Religion in addition to the existing Article 9.

    NJC heavyweight Gevindu Cumaratunga said that the government had accused those opposed to the ongoing constitutional making process of propagating lies. The government repeatedly alleged attempts were being made to sabotage post-war reconciliation process, Cumaratunga said. There couldn’t be any justification for proposing four recommendations in place of Article 1 and Article 2 that dealt with unitary status of Sri Lanka, Cumaratunga said.

    Alleging that the government was bending backwards to appease those wanting to divide Sri Lanka on ethnic lines and transform the country into nine federal areas, Cumaratunga said that proposals were meant to empower Provincial Council to such an extent they would enjoy unprecedented powers at the expense of the central government.

    Cumaratunga said that the Joint Opposition had quite rightly rejected the entire interim report toto.

    Commenting on proposed provision in respect of merger of two or three neighbouring Provinces, Cumaratunga said that the government objective was to restrict referendum in case of a merger of the Provinces concerned. The move was meant to facilitate the merger of the Eastern Province with the North, Cumaratunga said, pointing out that the government wanted to do away with the country’s ability to exercise franchise as one electorate.

    Cumaratunga explained the circumstances under which Provincial Councils could take control over land at the expense of the government. The civil society activist alleged that the central government would be at the mercy of provincial government if a particular administration declined land required for security purpose.

    Recommendations pertaining to introducing amendments to the proposed Constitution in case adopted by parliament were meant to thwart any such move, Cumaratunga said. According to him, an amendment couldn’t be moved unless it received a two-thirds majority in the proposed Second Chamber comprising five members representing each Provincial Government and also obtained two-thirds majority in Provincial Governments.

    PC de Silva and Cumaratunga dealt with recommendations in respect of devolution of powers and how the process could endanger the unitary status much to the disappointment of the vast majority of people. They asserted that the elimination of the Concurrent List, limiting Reserve List, Provincial Government given the authority to implementing laws in respect of subjects coming under the purview of the Central Government, subject of national Policy to be removed from the Reserve List, sharp dilution of powers currently exercised by Governor vis a vis Chief Minister to pave the way for the former to take decisions in consultation with the latter.

    Cumaratunga pointed out that recommendations had been made to deprive the Governor the authority to intervene in the Provincial Statutes. The activist said that the Steering Committee had gone to the extent of recommending an unprecedented Constitutional Court to decide on constitutionality of Provincial Statutes.

    Cumaratunga urged political parties to examine the threat posed by setting up judicial mechanism outside the existing system. “We are heading for chaos, unprecedented turmoil,” Cumaratunga warned, faulting successive governments for not abolishing the 13th Amendment to the Constitution forced on JRJ government by India three decades ago.

    The NJC pointed out that the 13th Amendment had considerably eroded supremacy and sovereignty of parliament thereby undermined significantly the unitary status. PC de Silva said: “Article 154 G (3) requires a majority of 2/3 of the members of parliament to repeal or amend laws passed by a Provincial Council whereas it only needs a simple majority to repeal or amend own laws.”

    PC de Silva said that the Parliament needed a two-thirds majority to only amend the Constitution and not amend ordinary laws.

    The NJC said that a wider discussion involving all stakeholders was required and a cohesive effort made to educate the people of the despicable project. Cumaratunga said that giving in to separatist demands was as worse as losing the war.

  17. Ananda-USA Says:

    Constitutional Reforms debate likely end June

    DailyNews.lk
    Monday, May 8, 2017 – 01:00

    Disna Mudalige

    A debate on Constitutional reforms by the Constitutional Assembly is likely to take place towards the end of June.

    The interim report of the Steering Committee headed by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will be placed before the Assembly next month, a member of the Steering Committee told the Daily News yesterday.

    A copy of the same would be handed over to President Maithripala Sirisena. The interim report, which deals with the vital aspects of Constitutional reforms including the electoral reforms, devolution of power and nature of the State, spells out the contours of the Constitutional Bill. A member of the Steering Committee said a draft interim report prepared by the Constitutional Assembly Secretariat was circulated among the Committee members last week.

    “The draft report is given in all three languages. All members of the Steering Committee have been asked to make their comments, if any, on the report in writing on or before May 23,” he said.

    The Steering Committee is to sit consecutively from May 23-26 to consider the responses of the members and finalize the report. “Through compromise and negotiation, we will try to reach a consensus during these meetings. Where there is no consensus, the members will be allowed to mention their own positions in the report. Likewise, the dissenting views will also be accommodated,” he explained.

    However, it is learnt that this is the third draft interim report presented to the Steering Committee. The Committee members were unable to reach an agreement on the two previous drafts. The latest draft has taken into account all the deliberations up to last Tuesday’s meeting, the Steering Committee sources said.

    Sources said the President has regularly been kept informed of all developments at the Steering Committee.

    When contacted Joint Opposition Parliamentary Group Leader Dinesh Gunawardena, one of the two members who represent the JO in the Steering Committee spoke in very negative terms on the Constitutional drafting process stating it seriously lacks transparency.

    “The JO flatly rejected the two previously submitted draft interim reports. We have been making our contribution actively at the Steering Committee. However, the government wants to do everything in secrecy keeping the others in the dark. We do not have secrets when it comes to matters that affect the country and national security,” he commented.

    The reports of six sub-committees on ‘Fundamental Rights, Judiciary, Finance, Public Service, Law and Order, Centre-Periphery’ were presented to the Constitutional Assembly by the Prime Minister on November 19. A three-day debate on Constitutional reforms initially scheduled for January 9 was postponed indefinitely as there was no consensus among the political parties.

    The Steering Committee has so far conducted over 50 meetings and according to the sources, a broad agreement over vital aspects such as electoral reforms and devolution of power have been reached after lengthy discussions.

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