Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan today called on former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to support the making of a new Constitution as it is his fundamental duty and to refrain from using the Constitution as a means to capture power.
Addressing the Parliament today (16), the TNA leader urged the Prime Minister and members of the Steering Committee to ensure that the draft constitutional proposals are put before the Constitutional Assembly within the next three months at least and are made available to the public.
“Why is former President Mahinda Rajapaksa opposing what he himself proposed? I want to ask President Mahinda Rajapaksa if you are opposed to the framing of a new Constitution why did you not come to the Parliament and oppose that resolution?,” he inquired.
He accused Rajapaksa of attempting to espouse communal tension by alleging that the new Constitution would divide the country.
“Now Local Authorities elections are going to be held. You want to defeat the government. Okay that is your political activity.”
“But in order to achieve that you are trying to create communal tension in this country by stating that through this Constitutional process an effort is being made to divide the country,” he said.
Sampanthan said that the former President is a very senior political leader in this country who commands much respect amongst the people of the country and that they would want him to be a party to the making of a new Constitution. “We would like to hold you also in the highest esteem.”
“You must support the making of a new Constitution. That is your fundamental duty. You want to capture power? Capture in some other way. We have no problems,” he asserted.
“But you don’t use the Constitution as a means to power. So don’t think we are against you. Please don’t be against us. I’m appealing to the genuine SLFPers. Please support the making of this Constitution. That is your fundamental duty.”