Sinhalese Won’t Give Anything, We Must Try To Obtain Our Rights Under International Laws: Wigneswaran

2nd November 2017 // 0 Comments

Last few weeks the Chief Minister of the Northern Province has been answering in a serial, one question every week in Tamil for the press. Without answering perfunctorily he explores the background of the question and gives detailed reply. The latest in this series is as follows – (This is a translation to English) – Wigneswaran Question – You have been discussing many matters recently with the political and religious  leadership of the Sinhalese. Sometimes your views seem to have angered these leaders. The Tamil leadership is worried whether your utterances would prevent the Sinhala leadership from granting even the meagre powers they are willing to grant presently. What have you got to say? Response – Good question! But whoever told you that the Sinhalese leaders […]

Exposed – Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Political Hypocrisy and Double Standards On the New Constitution and Greater Devolution.

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

Tamil National Alliance Spikesperson and Jaffna District MP Mathiaparanam Abraham Sumanthiran addressed the Constitutional Assembly at the inception of the three day debate on the Constitutional assembly Steering Committee Interim report on October 30th 2017. Sumanthiran MP reiterated in his speech that the TNA despite having a different mandate would abide by the final decisions of the Constituent Assembly in the interests of achieving a consensus if the main parties the UNP and SLFP reached mutual agreement. In an impactful speech Sumanthiran also exposed the hypocritical double standards adopted by former Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his cohorts in opposing the envisaged new Constitution and the granting of maximum devolution through the provincial councils. Sumanthiran cited relevant provisions of Mahinda Rajapaksa’s 2015 Presidential election […]

New Constitution a must for peace- Sampanthan

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

Opposition Leader R Sampanthan says a new Constitution is a prerequisite to sustainable peace, development and progress. Parliamentarian Sampanthan addressing the Constitutional Assembly said the previous Presidents and governments who were in power tabled proposals for power devolution that went far beyond the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. The Opposition Leader quoted a statement by Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa who said any solution must be seen as one that stretches to a maximum possible devolution of powers Former Minister GL Peiris from 2002 who said the government sought extensive power sharing within a framework of one country. The Opposition leader highlighted that despite the conclusion of the 30 year long conflict steps have not been taken to look into the causes behind the conflict. The Parliamentarian noted […]

Three Racist Opposition MPs threatened to set the Parliament on fire

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

Speaker Karu Jayasuriya yesterday said that those who threatened to set the House on fire, could not be allowed to stifle democracy. Speaker Jayasuriya reprimanded Joint Opposition MPs Dinesh Gunawardena, Keheliya Rambukwella and Prasanna Ranaweera for trying to shout Constitutional lawyer and MP Dr.Jayampathy Wickramaratne down and disturb his speech repeatedly. As Dr.Wickramaratne took the floor opening the Constitutional Assembly debate for the second day, the JO MPs repeatedly disturbed him asking for opportunities to raise a ‘Point of Order’. The MP declined to allow the JO MPs take his time and tried to continue his speech. Speaker Jayasuriya asked the JO MPs to raise their concerns in the time slot allocated to them, adding that the MP must not be disturbed. MPs Dinesh Gunawardena, […]

Who is really behind the New Constitution-making process in Sri Lanka?

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

There is currently a debate about the drafting of a ‘New Constitution’ for the country among the academic community and the general public in Sri Lanka. This started with the appointment of a 19-member Committee headed by Lal Wijenayake called the Public Representations Committee on Constitutional Reforms. Its report was released in May 2016. Meanwhile, a Constitutional Assembly was established by a parliamentary resolution on March 9, 2016 and a 21-member Steering Committee chaired by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was appointed thereafter. The Steering Committee had its first sittings on April 5, 2016. The Steering Committee recognized 12 main subject areas and assigned six of those subjects to sub-committees appointed by the Constitutional Assembly. The reports of the six Sub-committees were presented on November 19, 2017. […]

Don’t miss the ‘Last Bus’ to lasting solution

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

Former leaders S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike, J.R. Jayewardene, Mahinda Rajapaksa, Rohana Wijeweera and also the Communist Party had pointed out that all had agreed beyond question that there is an ethnic issue in the country.  Minority have sadly been deprived and cheated of the rights of economic prosperity that this nation could have achieved during the last 70 years. By Gagani Weerakoon Government leaders yesterday warned the country that this was the ‘last chance’ the country had to bring about a lasting solution to the ethnic or national problem by bringing in a new Constitution. “For the first time, the biggest representation of Tamil people, the TNA, has actively participated in the process of constitutional reforms and this chance will never ever come to us. Already, it […]

New constitution can change the course of the country – Minister Mangala Samaraweera

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

Oct 31, Colombo: Sri Lanka’s Minister of Finance Mangala Samaraweera says by formulating a new constitution the trajectory of the country can be changed towards a new direction and create an ‘equal citizenship’ to bring about economic prosperity. He expressed these views participating in the debate held in parliament today on the Steering Committee Report on constitutional reforms. The Minister said the burning issue in Sri Lanka is the ethnic problem although certain quarters do not seem to have such a problem. Over the years, leaders of all political parties have spoken about a constitution that secures the rights of all races but only the present government under President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has come forward to make it a reality. The […]

Ploys by the MAHINDA to scuttle Govt. moves for new Constitution

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

Several people have come forward to defend National Freedom Front (NFF) leader Wimal Weerawansa who threatened to bomb the Parliament if a new Constitution was adopted on the basis of the interim report submitted by the Constitutional Assembly’s Steering Committee and tabled in Parliament on September 21 by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. Keheliya Rambukwella a former media minister in the Mahinda Rajapaksa regime and joint opposition front-liner in the Central Province, Dilum Amunugama had echoed what Weerawansa had said while NFF deputy leader and MP Jayantha Samaraweera defended his boss. He said bombs should fall on the Parliament (not that Parliament should be bombed) if a new Constitution was promulgated on the basis of the above interim report. They advocate violence and justify it on […]

President announces three major steps regarding constitutional reforms

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

President announces three major steps regarding constitutional reforms “The government will take three important steps on constitutional reforms and to prevent incorrect information which creates incorrect ideas about the proposed new constitution”, says President Maithripala Sirisena. “Accordingly, the government will call for an all party conference, with participation of the political parties represented in Parliament, a conference of all religious leaders and another conference of scholars and intellectuals who are interested in this national issue”, he said. “At these conferences the issues pertaining to the proposed new constitution can be discussed and unnecessary clauses could be removed and new clauses could be included, if required”, he further said. The President was speaking at the National Convention on Reconciliation, participated by associations and national civil society […]

NGOs and Federalism

1st November 2017 // 0 Comments

I see no reason why the majority of public could not agree to the word ‘United’, instead of ‘Unitary’ – M.A.Sumanthiran Prof. Ghai drafted Kenya’s and Papua New Guinea’s Constitutions Federal State is the last nail that will be driven into the coffin of reconciliation Fear and mistrust crept into Sinhalese in the South as if any change is made to the word ‘Unitary’  Prof. Yash Ghai, a Harvard Scholar and Prof. Emeritus of the Nairobi University, was a Kenyan who had over the years been regarded as an international expert in constitutional making. It was a great honour for the University of Nairobi to have educated and nurtured such a magnificent scholar. He has been invited by many developing countries to formulate and assist […]

Why is stupid Lord Nasby Ignored?

31st October 2017 // 0 Comments

Judging by the debate initiated by  Lord Nasby PC, it is clear that Mahinda Rajapaksha do have friends in the British establishment. He believes killing of 40,000 civilians is wrong but killing of 8,000 Tamil Civilians is ok and not War crime. He also believes that White flag killing of surrendered LTTE Leaders by the Sri Lankan Army, who surrendered with White Flag after UN officials negotiated the surrender was ok and should be ignored. Lord Naseby has given misleading testimony to the House of Lords, and his remarks have been picked up in Sri Lanka and are being used in defence of the regime. Lord Nasby a well known friend of Mahinda regime who is accused of enjoying Free holidays sponsored by Sri Lankan […]

”Minority in the country must be given some sort of power through the new Constitution” says Minister ”No” Says Mahinda

31st October 2017 // 0 Comments

By Shaahidah Riza The Tamil community in the country must be given some sort of power through the new Constitution, and their concerns must be addressed, lest another war may take place, said State Minister for City Planning and Water Supply, Sudarshini Fernandopulle. In an interview with Ceylon Today she emphasised that a draft constitution has not yet been released and that public misconception pertaining to an imminent Constitution is solely based on the reports published by various parties. Excerpts follow: The Prime Minister in his economic statement noted that the present situation in the private sector on maternity benefits and access to tertiary and vocational education facility will be improved in relation to women. In what capacity will this take place? A. There is […]

‘Lanka Tamils agreeing to Constitutional proposals historic’ but Racist Mahinda opposes it.

31st October 2017 // 0 Comments

Colombo, Oct 30 Tamil political representatives’ acceptance of proposals in the interim report of the Constitutional Assembly represents a “historic” moment for Sri Lanka, a senior TNA legislator told parliament here today. The Tamil National Alliance’s M A Sumanthiran was addressing the House when it met as the Constitutional Assembly started discussions on the interim report of the all-party steering committee in order to formulate a new Constitution to replace the existing 1978 charter. “This is a historic moment that Tamil party representatives have agreed to the proposals made in the interim report. Let all join and support this,” he said. The three-day debate is aimed at discussing the interim report against which majority Buddhist religious leaders have already expressed opposition. Senior Buddhist monks have […]

Six Tamil suspects in Prison since 1998 sentenced to 10 and a half years of rigorous imprisonment

31st October 2017 // 0 Comments

Six suspects found guilty over the attack on Douglas Devananda at the Kalutara Prison in 1998, have been sentenced to 10 and a half years of rigorous imprisonment by the Colombo High Court. Delivering a verdict in the long dragged out case, which was heard without the presence of any defendants, High Court Judge Piyasena Ranasinghe delivered the sentence today (30). A total of 16 accused had been charged over the incident while 9 of them including former top LTTE member Anton Chamil Lakshmi Kannan alias ‘Emil Kanthan’ were acquitted in the case. One of the accused had previously pleaded guilty and had been sentenced by court. Devananda, the leader of Eelam People’s Democratic Party (EPDP), was injured following an attack with sharp objects at […]

Karuna allowed to go with ’90 Million Bullet proof car’

31st October 2017 // 0 Comments

Former Deputy Minister Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman has been exonerated by the Colombo Magistrate’s Court from the case filed against him regarding the alleged misuse of state vehicles. When the case was taken up before the Colombo Chief Magistrate Lal Ranasinghe today (30), the FCID informed the court that the Attorney General has decided not to take any further action regarding the defendant. Therefore they requested the former deputy minister be exonerated from the case. After considering the fact presented the, magistrate ordered the accused be exonerated and also ordered to hand over the vehicle in question, which had been released on a bond, to the Presidential Secretariat. The former top LTTE military commander who later became Deputy Minister of National Integration in the […]

Maj Gen Kamal Gunaratne’s Alleged Death Threat Against “Traitors Supporting New Constitution”

28th October 2017 // 0 Comments

Gota’s “Vipath maga” (Disaster route) is “Terrorist route”: Those supporting new constitution shall be murdered (Video) More evidence in proof of murder committed by Nandikadal Kamal Gunaratne when he was Dep. Ambassador ! Major General Kamal Gunaratne seized me by the neck and assaulted me while threatening to break all my bones’ -16 years old D.S. student lodges complaint with Cinnamon gardens police Damning Expose`: SL Dep. Ambassador Kamal Gunaratne brutally murdered his worker in Brazil..! BY Lucien Rajakarunanayake The debate on a new constitution is certainly gathering force, but regrettably it is largely a distorted debate due to deliberate efforts by those clearly opposed to a new constitution being adopted in the country, presenting the Interim Report of the Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly, which […]

Fasting Tamil prisoners appeal to have case transferred back to Vavuniya

28th October 2017 // 0 Comments

By S.S.Selvanayagam Tamil prisoners who have embarked on a hunger strike to force the transfer of their case back to the Vavuniya High Court from the Anuradhapura High Court yesterday filed an appeal in the Court of Appeal against the Attorney General and the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID). Petitioners Rajathurai Thiruvarul, Mathiarasan Sulakshan and Ganeshan Dharshan, who have been fasting for the last 32 days, filed their petition through their Attorney M.K.P. Chandralal.  They state that they were arrested by the TID and produced before the Magistrate before being committed to fiscal custody. They also revealed that they were remanded in various prisons and are presently being detained in the Anuradhapura Prison. They state that they were indicted by the then Attorney General in the […]

Don’t Be Fooled by Sri Lanka’s UN Engagement – Colombo remains unserious about transitional justice.

28th October 2017 // 0 Comments

Pablo de Greiff, the UN special rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence, recently visited the island nation of Sri Lanka. De Greiff met a range of people during his two-week visit and traveled throughout the country. He’s visited on previous occasions and will present a comprehensive report to the UN Human Rights Council in September 2018. A recently released statement of his (that could have been stronger in certain areas) is worth reading in full. Toward the start of it, de Greiff makes a few preliminary observations and then notes the following: Enjoying this article? Click here to subscribe for full access. Just $5 a month. However, the fact that this list of achievements does not include most of the priority measures […]

Govt won’t act on Lord Naseby’s statement of ”Sri Lankan government forces killed 8,000 Tamil Civilians in May 2009”

28th October 2017 // 0 Comments

The Foreign Ministry said yesterday that war crimes allegations would be dealt through national independent judicial mechanisms. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mahishini Colonne said so when The Island asked her whether the government would request UK and Geneva to review the allegation that 40,000 civilians had been killed during the Vanni campaign, in the light of Lord Naseby statement int he House of Lords disputing the figure on oct. 12. The following is the full text of SM spokesperson’s statement: “As you would recall, the 100 Day Programme ‘United for a Change. Dawn of Maithri Rule. A New Country in 100 Days’, in point 93, stated the following: “Since Sri Lanka is not a signatory to the Rome Statute regarding international jurisdiction with regard to war crimes, […]

”Bomb the Parliament” – Weerawansa a Sinhala MP can say it but not the Tamil MP’s.

28th October 2017 // 0 Comments

National Freedom Front (NFF) leader Wimal Weerawansa is in a midst of a controversy over his remarks that Parliament should be bombed in case it approves a Constitution based on the interim report of the Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly (CA). The report was submitted to the Parliament by the Prime Minister and Chairman of the Steering Committee Ranil Wickremesinghe on September 21. Weerawansa’s statement gets more importance considering the fact that he was a leader of a political party that had once involved in a bomb attack inside the Parliament. And Deputy Minister Ashu Marasinghe reminded the country on Tuesday that it was Werawansa’s brother-in-law who lobbed that bomb into a room where the then ruling party’s parliamentary group headed by President J.R. Jayawardene had […]

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