General Elections 2020: A Defining Moment for Sri Lanka Friday Forum

A headline in a newspaper of May 23rd quoted the Prime Minister as having said, “President and Cabinet can efficiently manage the country without parliament” (Daily Mirror May 23, 2020). The President has stated, and has been quoted many times in the media, as saying that he will not in any circumstances re-summon the dissolved ‘old” Parliament. Both the President and the Prime Minister have indicated that they await the general elections 2020, and the summoning of the “new” Parliament.

Yet most candidates contesting the forthcoming general elections 2020 are those who have represented the people, for the past ten or more years. So why is there demonisation of the “old” and the faith in the “new”? Is it possible that there is an expectation that the much desired “new” Parliament will adopt and enact a Constitution that will do away with familiar institutions known as Parliament and the courts (the two other pillars of governance in a parliamentary democracy)?

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