Monks warn of Sangha edict if President, PM do not quit

Hundreds of Buddhist monks yesterday called on the President and the Government to immediately implement the Mahanayaka Theras’ proposals to resolve the prevailing economic crisis.

The monks who gathered at Independence Square warned that if the proposals were not implemented, the Mahanayaka Theras would issue a Sangha Convention edict calling on monks to shun politicians.

The monks called on Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa to resign forthwith to make way for the appointment of an interim government comprising parties represented in Parliament.

The people had high hopes that the Government would usher in an era of prosperity and splendour as it promised, said Prof. Ven. Agalakada Sirisumana Thera, addressing the gathering. “All of us monks supported this endeavour and it was thanks to our strength that this Government came to power. But all of our hopes have been dashed.”

After pushing through the 20th Amendment, the Government opened the doors to even more fraud and corruption, he alleged.

Ven. Omalpe Sobitha Thera said President Gotabaya Rajapaksa must beg for forgiveness from the people for all the bad decisions he made, causing them much harm.

He also criticised Prime Minister Rajapaksa for showing open disdain for the Mahanayaka Theras’ request to step down and make way for the appointment of a new PM.

The Opposition is also only interested in using the crisis to come to power instead of thinking about how it can help douse the flames and bring some relief to the people, he charged.

“What should matter now is not someone’s presidential dream. What is needed is to come together to pull the country out of this crisis,” he said. “The President and his Government have failed in their responsibilities to safeguard the people.”

Senior monks who attended the gathering met with political party representatives at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute last night to brief them of their decisions.

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