Will study 20A in depth before making recommendations: Minister Peiris
Posted on September 14th, 2020

Lahiru Pothmulla Courtesy The Daily Mirror

The committee chaired by Minister of Education Professor G. L. Peiris which was appointed to look into the 20th Amendment to the Constitution, will study it in depth before making recommendations, Minister Peiris today said.

Cabinet ministers Udaya Gammanpila, Ali Sabry, Nimal Siripala de Silva, Wimal Weerawansa and State Ministers Susil Premajayantha, S. Viyalendran and MPs Dilan Perera and Premanath C. Dolawatte were appointed as the committee members by Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Speaking at a news briefing today, Minister Professor Peiris said the government was open to criticisms made over the 20A.

As the committee, we will thoroughly analyse the 20A and will give recommendations and conclusions to the Prime Minister tomorrow. The findings will be submitted to the Cabinet on Wednesday. The 20A was brought to find solutions to pressing issues. A completely new Constitution is the need of the hour but it is a time consuming process,” he said.

He said the Constitution of Sri Lanka which is over 40 years old had not been changed along with the changes that took place in the society. In a new Constitution, Minister Peiris said reforming the electoral system will take priority.

Today, voters find it difficult to meet the representatives they elected to discuss their grievances, since the MPs represent an entire district. We should consider a new electoral system which is a combination of the first-past-the-post electoral system and proportional representation at 70 to 30 percentage respectively. We need to ensure an elected representative represents a constituency so that he or she can heed to the people’s plights in the area,” Minister Peiris said.

He also said by-elections are needed to test the popularity of the government and a threshold on election campaign expenditures to create a level playing field. 

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