had never been a hubris Speaker like this even during the time of our grand parents. – MP Wimal Weerawansa
Posted on August 16th, 2017

Translated by : A.A.M.NIZAM – MATARA

The whole nation should be mustered together to fight against the federal constitution instead of launching bogus battles and in order to wage this battle as the initial step the white covering named the ‘Constitution Council’ enveloping the constitution formulation process should be removed and it was what his party carried out by withdrawing from the Constitution Council.

This was stated by the leader of the National Freedom Front Parliamentarian Mr. Wimal Weerawansa delivering the keynote address of the people’s seminar held at the auditorium of the ‘Sambuddha Jayanthi Mandiraya’ in Colombo under the caption Why we witdrew from the Constitution Formulation Process?”.

Speaking further in this seminar, he said that no one has received a mandate to bring forth a new constitution. The reason for organising this seminar was to widely enlighten the people and the nation about a political decision taken by us.  On 18th August 2017 it will become 2 years since this government came into power. During these two miserable years they were only involved in fulfilling the needs and appreciations of the groups and cabals who helped to bring them to power. In order to carry out this process uninterruptedly they required to maintain a 2/3 majority in the Parliament.

In the General Election of 2015 the United National Party won only 106 seats. The Sri Lanka Freedom Party won 95 seats. No party was able to get the absolute majority of a minimum of 113 seats. Although it had been mentioned in the United National Party manifesto presented for the elections about a new constitution it did not get a mandate from the majority of the people.  To get the mandate of the majority of the people the United National Party should have got a minimum of 113 seats or more in the Parliament.

In the manifesto presented by Mr. Maithripala Sirisena for the 2015 Presidential Election it was mentioned that I will take steps to present a constitutional amendment that will not warrant for a referrundam.  That was the camouflage used then to keep the executive prsidency preserved without getting it amended. Getting the Executive Presidency amended is a constitutional amendment that requires holding a referendum. But Maithripala Sirisena has come to power then pledging that he will not implement a constitutional amendment. Nevertheless it is quite clear even in the 2015 Presidential Election a mandate was not received for a full constitution amendment. The United People’s Freedom Alliance asked for a mandate only to implement a constitution amendment that would not harm the basic foundations of Sri Lanka including the Unitary status, and territorial integrity.  Accordingly it  was clear that although it is being said that a mandate has been received to bring foth a new constitution such a mandate to bring forth a nww constitution an amendment has not been received by any of the parties.  It is a damn lie to say that the ‘mandate received for a new constitution should be enlivened’.

Although JVP changed Wimal…….

How the Janathika Vimukthi Peramuna acted when the Mahanayake Theros of the Tri-Nikayas issued a joint statement emphasizing that a new constitution is not required by the country? One of their MPs said that although Maha Nayake theros have a right to issue sauch a statement but according to the mandate received by the government a new constitution should be bring forth.  The JVP which we were in the past did everything possible including making divine offerings to defeat and force abandon the separatist constitution by the ex-President Mrs. Chandrike Kumaratunga under the name a package”, We took the leadership in building a public opinion against it.  Also we took the leadership to defeat it in the Parliament.  The JVP slogan then was Don’t bring forth a separatist constitution!” But today their slogan has become Despite whatever is said by Mahanayake Theros, bring forth soon the separatist constitution!”  That is the change that has taken place. There has not been a change of political opinion between the then Wimal Weerawansa and the present Wmal Weerawansa. We said then and we say now Fold up the separatist constitution” All these people are attempting to show that they have received a mandate despite lack of such a mandate to offer a clean slate to that impure act.

Making the danger cold to a thin level.

Similarly the government can bring forth a new constitution as the governing pary if they wish so.  Despite having had discussions with the United National Party, the package” was brought forth as a new draft Constitution Bill.  But when the UNP opposed for it and burnt it within the Parliament it lost the 2/3rd anticipated majority. It is to give it a purity status that the government is attempting today to label it as a work of the whole Parliament.  That is why all those Ministers and the members who visit the Mahanayake Theros tell them ‘this is not being done by the solitary opinion of the government, it is being done by everyone in the Parliament on a joint basis, and therefore there is no possibility that it could become dangerous.’ What happens here is making the danger of this impure act thinned to a cold nature.  To provide a clean status to this abhorrent act the government is hanging the name board saying that the whole Parliament has been made as the Constitutional Council.  On the other hand that the government will become possible to present it argument as that all the 225 members of the Parliament jointly as a Constitution Council prepared the draft Bill for the new constitution when it is challenged before the Courts.  The government is trying to get a clean status under this way as well.

The Drama will continue up to its end….

Now this abhorrent process of making Parliament as a constitution council has come forward on a long process. It has come forward to the status of Prime Minister Ranil Wckremasinghe submitting an interim draft of this federal constitution to the steering committee of the constitution council. It was in July 19th that the 5 Parliamentarians of the National Freedom Front officially withdrew from the Constitution Council expressing their objection to this process and wholeheartedly acknowledging the opinions expressed by the Maha Sangha.  But we had to wait for sometimes to hold a public seminar like this.

That was because of this government’s drama scenes unveiled during the last few days.  The former Finance Minister who didn’t own the Central Bank resigned while the Prime Minister who owned the Central Bank remained as a ‘burgler cat’.  It was because of the Treasury Bond Scam Mr. Ravi Karunanayake has resigned.  Now any thief can resign from his or her post and get freed from the Law.   It is in vain that Sakvithi Ranasnghe went to jail.  He could have resigned.  All these are episodes of the drama of fooling the public. Ravi Karunanayake’s last batch of officials remains intact.  He still has the official vehicles.  Only the salary entitled for the Minister post he has lost.  He does not feel this loss.  We have got an opportunity to discuss with you because, other than this Aloysius, there are other Aloysiuses in this government, and the central challenge of this allegations have come to the last episode of this drama.  .

The two contracts entrusted on January 8th.

What are they going to do?. This government came to power due to the mediation of the Tamil diaspora, powerful western powers and India.  Therefore this government has become a puppet before them.  This government has become obliged to go towards the direction of realization of the dream of the Tamil diaspora. The dream of the Tamil diaspora is to get the establishment of a separate State including the Northern and Eastern provinces of Sri Lanka achieved. It was the dream Velupillai Prabhakaran attempted to get realized by the use of weapons.  It is the dream that the Tamil separatists have not abandoned so far.  In order to get that dream realized this government was entrusted with two tasks.

One is to prove that ‘war crimes did take place in Sri Lanka during the war period’.  This has to be proved by any form of a Court system.  The second task was to create an acceptable self rule system for the Tamil people.  This is the contract that the Sirisena-Ranil Junta accepted on January 8th of 2015.

This government is now carrying out the implementation of these two contracts.  What they do by transforming the whole parliament as a constitution council is the formulation of that self-rule task.  The Prime Minister Mr. Ranil Wickrmasinghe had presented to the steering commit of the constitution council a draft new constitution.  Although it was presented as a draft of the steering committee it was a draft prepared outside.  The joint opposition members in the constitution council Messrs Dinesh Gunawardene and Presanna Ranatunga pointed ou that in writing and expressed their strong opposition to it.

What you have in Ranil’s constitution Draft?

In the constitution draft prepared outside and presented by Ranil Wickremasinghe has several alternatives for the Unitary Status concept.  It also states how the provincial councils will be comprised.  Accordingly the concurrent list will be abolished.  Most of the powers listed in the concurrent list will be handed over to the provincial councils. The Central Government will abandon those powers.  It says that the legislative powers, the powers to formulate or introduce Laws or constitutional powers will be vested not only with the parliament but with provincial governments as well.  This draft has made recommendations to absorb the Government Agents, Provincial Secretaries, Grama Niladhari Officers, including the public servants fully to the Provincial Government Service and to handover provincial services to the relevant provincial governments.  Not only that, the Police powers and Land powers would be fully vested with Provincial Administrations.  Similarly it is planned to vest Fiscal powers, and the powers to negotiate and obtain loan assistance from overseas will also be entrusted to Provincial Administrations.

Although under the existing constitution the sovereignty of the people can only be vested with the 225 members and the President who will get elected by the franchise of the people, this draft says that the Provincial Councils will also be vested with the sovereign power. Accordingly Provincial Councils will also become an institution vested all the triple powers of sovereignty such as institutions vested with executive, legislative, and judicial powers.  If that is done it will not become necessary to have a separate State.  It is to provide all these things that this basic draft has proposed.  Some people say that still the Constitution Baby has not been born.  But it is possible to guess about the child to be born when you look at the father and the mother.  Isn’t it?

There is no doubt that the constitution formulated by federalists such as Ranil Wickremasinghe, Jayampathi Wickremaratne together with Sambandans will definitely be a Federal Constitution. The whole parliament under the nameboard of Cnstitutional Council is attempting to formulate a constitution that could grant a self rule territory to the Tamil people including the Northern and Eastern provinces.

As per the international law if a new country is to be created from an existing country it should satisfy two conditions.  One condition is that the people in a certain area of that country had been subjected to human rights crimes from the other people of that country.  That means there should have been genocide and war crimes.

The second condition is that the said ethnic community had held a self rule in a certain territorial area.  It is this self rule territorial requirement that Mr. Ranil Wickremasinghe is attempting to create through the so-called new constitution. Under the present conditions it cannot be said that they were having a self rule in the northern and eastern provinces for a considerable period.  That is why the Tamil diaspora in order to get that condition created provided their support to establish this puppet government.   .

The Ambassador in Sri Lanka of the United States which made all attempts to halt the war and rescue the terrorist leaders and that always appreciated the separatist, chauvinist Tamil diaspora ‘it is happy note that a process of formulating a new constitution has been launched’. What they say as their happiness is our unhappiness.  That also shows that the new constitutional process is something that would satisfy the separatists, their stooges and something that is being undertaken as per their needs.

Postponing of Elections.

There was a possibility of presenting to the parliament the process of revision to the constitution to bring forth a self rule required by the Tamil separatists and chauvinists as the 20th amendment to the constitution.  But Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe has now presented as the 20th amendment to the constitution a revision to the constitution with provisions to postpone Provincial Council Elections. If that happened this constitutional amendment for establishing a federal constitution will be presented as the 21st amendment to the constitution.

This government by postponing local government elections for the last two years has made the country as a hospital.  These people who gave thousand talks” about democracy is now finding ways and means to postpone elections. While bringing forth Acts to send War Heroes to gallow, and whilst formulating federal constitutions this government is recently making a robbery equivalent to an onion peel”.

The trousers of independent commissions have been removed

The trousers of the independent commissions the members of this yahaapalana government appointed saying as a move to strengthen democracy including for sectors such as election, Police, and public service have been removed.  Although there is an independent elections commission there are no elections. Despite there is an independent Police Commission, the Chief of the Police and his colleagues twists the Law to suit their needs and high ranking politicians.  Just see that in respect of the murder of the Jaffna student Vidya an IGP of the Police has also been arrested on suspicion. But the United National Party parliamentarian Mrs. Vijayakala Maheswaran against whom there are video clip proofs of evidence relating to freeing the main suspect of that murder without allowing him to be taken into Police custody still remain at  large.  For her the Law is being twisted the way she wants.  Although there is an independent Public Service Commission this government is taking political revenge in an unprecedented manner from the public servants.

Incidents of twisting the Law are being recorded in our Black Book.

Under a government which said that they will ‘put a halt to intoxicants’ narcotics and poisonous drugs are being spread throughout the country very fast.  Large consignments of poisonous drugs such as heroine, cocaine, and hasheesh are being confiscated.  No one knows what happened to these confiscated drugs.  A cabinet sub-committee has been appointed to look into this matter as well. High level political mediations are involved in all these aspects.   If the telephone conversation records between IGP Pujitha Jayasundera and the Minister of Finance and Media Mangala Samaraweera were investigated comprehensively it can be found how the relevant Minister got his Public Relations Officer safeguarded and acquitted from narcotic peddling charges.  We would like to tell these people who are twisting the Law that we will record these Law twisting events in our ‘Black Book’ and through a future government action will be taken against all such events of Law twisting.

As per the historical traditions of this country, we cannot go against the opinions of the Mahanayake Theros of the tri-Nikayas.  In this country, the Maha Sangha was always above the King and the people. It is by profusely understanding the enormity and the danger of the act of formulating a new constitution that they issued a joint statement saying that ‘the country does not need a new constitution at this moment’.  They by that statement admonished this government not to plunge the country to such a danger.  While wholeheartedly accepting this admonition and clearly understanding that the disadvantageous are more than the advantageous we quit ourselves from this constitution making process. As per the proposal adopted by the parliament the constitutional council formulating the new constitution should comprise all the 225 members represented in the parliament.  With our withdrawal from this Constitution Council the validity of the Council itself has come under challenge.  But this truth that can be accepted by all and sundry is not acknowledged by the Speaker.  As per the legal advice said to have been received by him the quitting of the 5 NFF members from the Constitutional Council process is not making any impact to its legal validity.  This type of a hubris Speaker has never been in this country even in the periods of our grand parents.  He is acting only in accordance with the requirements of the Prime Minister.

The locquacious talks made by this government about its independent nature have now ceased.  Today the Ministers and the members of the government are criticising the Minister of Justice Mr. Wijedasa Rajapaksa asking why he did not imprison Rajapaksas by influencing the Attorney General’s Department. We have withdrawn from the Constitution Council and have fulfilled our responsibility.  That is not sufficient.  This is a time that the whole country must get together and launch a massive opposition against the federal constitution amendment. If that happens only, we will be able to safeguard the roots of our historical traditions.  The impure forces t hat brought this government into power are attempting to terminate the progressive march of this nation.  Therefore the whole nation should be mustered against the federal constitution instead of engaging in bogus struggles.  If that is to be achieved we must smash the constitutional council that veils the process formulating the federal constitution.  It is that we did.  We pray that the other political parties that love this country will also decide to do so.

The welcoming speech of this seminar was delivered bu the NFF Politbureau member Parliamentarian Udayashanta Gunasekera. (niz)

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