The National Peace Council (NPC) yesterday urged the government to reconsider the need to proceed with the 20th Amendment in its present formulation as it is excessively centralizing and does not reflective of the plural nature of the Sri Lankan society.
“The proposed 20th Amendment to the constitution has been approved by the cabinet of ministers and put before the general public prior to being debated in parliament. This far reaching constitutional change seeks to centralize power in the institution of the Executive Presidency with the justification of ensuring stability in the country and safeguarding national sovereignty. In terms of the amendment, the President can remove the Prime Minister, a member of the cabinet, any other minister or a Deputy Minister and authority to dissolve Parliament after completion of sittings for a period of one year. This massive transfer of power to the Presidency has been justified to the electorate as stemming from the inability of the previous government to govern effectively under the 19th Amendment to the constitution,” the NPC said in a statement.