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Draft Constitution to be presented before Feb 4: TNA

3 January 2019 04:28 am - 11     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The draft Constitution, which was to be presented in Parliament on December 7, 2018, would be presented before February 4 2019, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Spokesman MP M.A. Sumanthiran said.

He briefed this when the visiting member of the European Parliament Geoffrey Van Orden met with the leader of the TNA R. Sampanthan yesterday in Colombo.

Apprising Van Orden of the recent political developments in the country, Mr. Sampanthan pointed out the importance of the reconstitution of the Constitutional Council through which the independence of the judiciary has been preserved, which was clearly demonstrated during the recent crisis situation.

Upon answering a question, Mr. Sampanthan expressed that “our support to reinstate the Government was on principle. The country was in distress and there was no Prime Minister or a Government. We had to support to reinstate the Government to prevent further damage being done to the economy and for normalcy in the functioning of institutions in this country”, said Mr. Sampanthan.

He also pointed out “that the new Constitution must ensure that the country is undivided and indivisible, further it should also ensure that there is a genuine power-sharing arrangement which allows the people and the regional/provincial governments, to exercise powers in regard to the matters that are connected to their day to day life.

When a new Constitution is introduced, if we see it as a reasonable and acceptable one, our people will accept it. Ever since the enactment of the 13th amendment to the Constitution, much work has been done to improve the Constitution under every successive leader of this country. During President Premadasa’s time, there was the Mangala Munasinghe select committee report, during President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga’s tenure the 2000 proposal, during President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s time the All-Party Representatives Committee and the Prof. Tissa Vitharana’s proposal.

All these proposals were a substantial improvement to the Constitution. Over thirty years, much work has been done and now we have the opportunity - we must grab it for the betterment of this country” said Mr. Sampanthan before further adding, “I am being reasonably optimistic because this is my country and I want this country to prosper, therefore I cannot be pessimistic.” Responding to a question in regard to the activities of diaspora members, MP M.A. Sumanthiran said, “the extreme elements in the diaspora are numerically very small and if there are proper power-sharing arrangements in Sri Lanka, a large section of the diaspora is willing to support such process” he added.

“Attitudes and actions of an extremist section of the diaspora will not have any influence on our decisions” said Mr. Sampanthan. Further, he said, “at every local election our people have consecutively and firmly voted out such extreme elements”. Speaking on the land issues, Mr. Sampanthan pointed out “we are against the state-sponsored settlement schemes which are done deliberately to change the ethnic composition in the regions, we are not against natural migration of people.

The Tamil speaking people have an inherent interest to preserve their land and their culture” said Mr. Sampanthan. Expressing his views, Geoffrey Van Orden said he expected more foreign support towards reconciliation efforts in Sri Lanka post-2009, and that he is not happy that then-President Mahinda Rajapaksa did not pursue efforts to achieve true reconciliation in this country.

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  Comments - 11

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  • tuan Thursday, 03 January 2019 08:56 AM

    with JVP holding hands with TNA; i have a hope that this solution will make a breakthrough agreement for a longstanding peace in sri lanka.

    Wele Vidane Thursday, 03 January 2019 09:54 AM

    That means MR is correct to accept Premiership before December 7.

    upi Thursday, 03 January 2019 10:43 AM

    What you say is not clear

    Unchikun Thursday, 03 January 2019 10:08 AM

    Well done Sir and your are my favorite politician in Sri Lanka today. Please bring in the new constitution. Thanks for all the effort in safeguarding democracy in Sri Lanka which easy to loose but difficult to get back. Cheer.

    Neomal Eric De Alwis Thursday, 03 January 2019 10:57 AM

    A new constitution is a must the 1978 constitution is a curse to this country this year before any election a new constitution that can address also the issues of the people living in the north and east also reforms to theElectoral process the preferential voting in a district is a total failure and abolishing the executive presidency has to be priority no 1! What are political parties trying to field presidential candidates if this happens without a new constitution in place the people will have no option than to boycott the next presidential election

    sarath Thursday, 03 January 2019 07:45 PM

    We are to be fell from pan to fire. Bad to worse. believe me we are accustomed to JRs constitution with amendments upto 16 th amendment. Every thing spoiled only after 17th and on wards.

    Charlie brown Thursday, 03 January 2019 11:17 AM

    And put in a clause so that uneducated village politicians can ignore the constitution on the grounds that if they're not aware of it or don't understand it they can ignore it ,and do what they like ,on the pretext of protecting the Sinhalese way of life and the majority.

    Amara Thursday, 03 January 2019 05:09 PM

    A new Constitution should have been brought in 2010. But MR and his family were insanely selfish.

    Nihal Amarasekera Thursday, 03 January 2019 05:10 PM

    KNEW Constitution?

    Nihal Amarasekera Thursday, 03 January 2019 05:55 PM

    CON-stitution for whom; united Mother Lanka; may be, may not be.

    raj Friday, 04 January 2019 06:16 AM

    He is preparing for the next election so he makes big deal of new constitution thought there is nothing tangible difference between the new constitution and the existing one. He is trying to sell the new constitution so that he and TNA members will be elected by Tamils. He is not a stupid and he knows that there will be no new constitution without parliament majority. At the same time, he pretend that the new constitution is possible In the current parliament, it is impossible to pass new constitution. If MR's waves continues in the same trend, MR might form the next government. .


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