Negative clauses in 13A will be scrapped: Weerasekara

State Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government, retired rear admiral Sarath Weerasekara who assumed duties yesterday, pledged to remove all clauses -- in the 13th Amendment to the Constitution -- which are detrimental to the well-being of the nation.

“We will not devolve police and land powers to the provincial councils,” he said while highlighting the fact that handing over the State Ministry of Provincial Councils and Local Government to him might have been a plan of destiny because he was one who vehemently opposed the 13th Amendment.

The state minister said the government would use its two-thirds majority in Parliament to remove all draconian laws in the Constitution and pledged to make every city in the country beautiful with cooperation of the local bodies.

“I will also restore the Mulleriyawa lake which is of historical value because it is the location where the locals defeated the Portuguese,” he said.

Local Government and Provincial Councils Ministry Secretary J.J. Ratnasiri said ministry staff were ready to work to fulfill the government's prosperity policy (Saubagayaye Dekma).

Defence Secretery retired major general Kamal Gunaratne, several high ranking army officers, clergy and several guests were present at the ministry to welcome the new state minister. By Yohan Perera

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