President Mahinda Rajapaksa said that the election for the Northern Provincial Council will be held in September 2013.
“We want to hold elections in September 2013,” President Mahinda Rajapaksa told The Hindu. “We are working towards it in a systematic manner.”
In an interaction at his official residence, Temple Trees, here, Mr. Rajapaksa said there were many issues to be resolved ahead of holding of elections. The primary one related to the electoral rolls. People who fled when the Tamil Tigers were in power and during the war were still coming in and staking claim to their land and property after the defeat of the Tamil Tigers in May 2009. These people too had to be accommodated in the rolls.
The last rolls were more than 30 years old and had no relation to the current eligible voters in the province.
The second issue was the completion of the rehabilitation and resettlement process. This was on with international support and was expected to be completed soon. Livelihood issues too were being addressed.
The holding of elections hold the key to moving forward on the question of granting Tamils the political space they lacked. In fact, this should have been possible soon after the India-Sri Lanka accord of 1987 (later called the 13th Amendment because the Sri Lankan Constitution was subsequently amended to include this provision), which also had a clause on devolution of powers. Ironically, the amendment benefitted all the other regions — albeit in a very limited manner — and all the provinces, barring the North, had a provincial council.
On the issue of glaring visibility of the Army in all walks of life, Mr. Rajapaksa said he had instructed that the Army should be visible only when required.
Mr. Rajapaksa refused to accept that the Indian vote against Sri Lanka in the United Nations Human Rights Council was because Colombo did not implement the promises it made to the Council in 2009. Insisting that his government had worked on all the promises that were delivered and was serious about fulfilling all undertakings that were given, he said he had even said that he was willing to go beyond the 13th Amendment.
Clarifying for the first time what the plus was, Mr. Rajapaksa said this was the creation of a Senate. “I said 13th Amendment plus. Then Shankar [Shiv Shankar Menon, Indian National Security Adviser] remarked if I meant the creation of a Senate, and I said yes.”
Mr. Menon had met Mr. Rajapaksa on June 29 on post-Geneva issues. India is the chair for the Universal Periodic Review at the UNHRC that comes up in November.
Mr. Rajapaksa made it clear that the creation of a Senate and the fleshing out of a solution needed to come from Parliament. “This is [where] the Parliamentary Select Committee is important,” he said
When The Hindu brought to his notice the plight of five fishermen from Tamil Nadu, who were being held in a Jaffna prison since November 28, 2011, he said he would first ascertain the facts of the case. He had called the Inspector General of Police and received an update on the issue. (Source: The Hindu)
Comments - 23
Jan Chandra Wednesday, 11 July 2012 03:04 AM
Congrats Mr President. Good Luck and God Bless
jeya Wednesday, 11 July 2012 08:38 AM
It will b possible if the election will be held in democratic way
Anura Wednesday, 11 July 2012 03:18 AM
Too early to declare.
Cheran Wednesday, 11 July 2012 03:39 AM
Due to the International Pressure
Al Rasa Wednesday, 11 July 2012 03:40 AM
Time is ripe.
janak Wednesday, 11 July 2012 04:06 AM
WHY SEP 2013 CAN HAVE ALL THE PC AT ONCE
wot to do Wednesday, 11 July 2012 04:21 AM
Ah ! After the Commonwealth meet and attention on lanka is gone? Should be Sept 2012.
Imran Hussein Wednesday, 11 July 2012 04:38 AM
Yes God bless the country, Dont know if it would survive till 2013.
Jay Wednesday, 11 July 2012 04:43 AM
"Senate" ... Another money sucking & useless body ... as if we don't have enough already.
Renu Wednesday, 11 July 2012 05:16 AM
The International Community wants it sooner than that. Why are you afraid to have the North Poll. UNHCR< EU & the Commonwealth is watching, Oh India too
RamUK Wednesday, 11 July 2012 10:12 AM
I am sure they will vote as they want unless......you know what i mean
AMG Wednesday, 11 July 2012 05:42 AM
idiot Wednesday, 11 July 2012 05:44 AM
Talk nicely. Don't do anything. Remember 13, 13+, 13- etc?
Sri Minnal Wednesday, 11 July 2012 06:57 PM
September 2013 is a very long way. Lot of changes might take place between now and then.
Chandi Toddy Wednesday, 11 July 2012 06:07 AM
Transparent enough ?
Raj Wednesday, 11 July 2012 08:41 PM
In your dreams-hope for democractic election
shantha madawelas Wednesday, 11 July 2012 06:11 AM
till then the present Govt. remains only......
jacoob Wednesday, 11 July 2012 06:15 AM
This guy surpasses all the clowns in global politics ... he is now blind with power hungry
Nodrog Wednesday, 11 July 2012 06:34 AM
will be good to have elections and interesting to see how the Northern people use their vote.
Ranjit Thursday, 12 July 2012 01:51 AM
Ha! Ha!! Haa!!!
ANURA Wednesday, 11 July 2012 07:12 AM
MR is right. The country has to take into consideration few facts as MRhas stated. MR should be honest to hold a clean election in the area without letting gun totting thugs to roam around the areas.
R.Dias Wednesday, 11 July 2012 07:39 AM
Then how can they treat people.....?
mks senevirathna Friday, 13 July 2012 03:04 AM
northern people can elect their representatives. good move.
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