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State Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardana says: Prez will get full financial powers after Gen. Elections

28 February 2020 12:01 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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By Sandun A Jayasekera

Information and Communication Technology State Minister  Lakshman Yapa Abeywardana said President Gotabaya Rajapaksa would get  full financial powers after the dissolution of Parliament on March 2 and  will have the authority to allocate funds to settle all unpaid bills of  the government.   


Though the opposition prevented the government from  allocating funds to pay outstanding bills of development projects  launched by the ‘Yahapalana’ government by refusing to extend its support to pass the  vote-on-account or mini budget, President Rajapaksa would settle all unpaid bills  of contractors, suppliers and investors before the Sinhala-Hindu New  Year, he added.   


‘The opposition got frightened to think that the government  would get political mileage if due arrears were paid to workers who  have been deployed in various small and medium development projects  during the New Year festive season. That is why they did not support the  Appropriation Bill that demanded Rs. 376 billion to settle unpaid  bills,” he added.   
Responding to a journalist, Minister Abeywardana said, in  the aftermath of Sri Lanka withdrawing from the US–Sri Lanka sponsored  UNHRC resolution 30/1 passed in 2015 and 40/1 passed in 2019, Sri Lanka  would initiate its own legal probe on alleged human right violations  during the final phase of the humanitarian operation.   


“We are not ready to dance to the tune of foreign powers  because it affects our sovereignty, self respect and dignity. But we are  ready to listen to them because Sri Lanka wants to maintain cordial and  close contacts with the global community. Foreign Relations Minister  Dinesh Gunawardena would enlighten the international community and the  UNHRC on Sri Lanka’s position on this crucial issue,” he stressed.   


In response to a journalist, Minister Abeywardana said, the  two resolutions could be illegal and violate the constitution because  both resolutions had not been given the cabinet, Parliament or President’s approval.   


Head of the then UN mission of Sri Lanka in Geneva Ravinath  Aryasinha had not put his signature to the resolution 30/1 in 2015,  because it was against the interest of Sri Lanka. But finally he had to  agree and put the signature on the insistence of Premier Wickremesinghe  reluctantly, he said.   


“Many of the recommendations of both resolutions contravene  the constitution and therefore the best solution was to put in place a  domestic mechanism to probe the so called war crimes if any,” he  stressed.   


Replying to another journalist, Minister Abeywardana said,  the Gotabaya Rajapaksa government had fulfilled four main pledges given  at the Presidential poll.   


“We have restored national security, the collapsed  economy, gaining a global recognition for the country that had been lost and the rule of law, in  the last three months. We will do better after electing our own  government, he noted. 

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