Bishop of Colombo Rt. Rev. Dhiloraj Canagasabey, in a strongly-worded letter, has condemned the attempted removal of Ranil Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister.
‘The Diocese of Colombo of the Church of Ceylon is extremely perturbed by the events that unfolded on the night of October 26, 2018 , when the President proceeded to swear in the former President at the Prime Minster, when the incumbent Prime Minister duly and legitimately appointed under the Constitution continued in office,’ the letter said.
‘The action has plunged the country into more instability at a time when the Sri Lankan and global economies are in politico-economic turmoil. This unfortunate action will only harm our international standing, cause even more loss of confidence in the country and lead to a further deterioration of our economy which will severely impact the already difficult day to day lives of our people, especially the poor.’
Bishop Canagasabey said the 133rd Annual Council of the Diocese of Colombo, which had met from October 25-27, 2018 had adopted a petition condemning the attempted removal of the Prime Minister of the country.
‘The President was voted into power by the majority of the people of this country with a mandate to ensure good governance, uphold the rule of law and democratic principles. On more than one occasion, he gave solemn promises to the people to do so. He has also given his oath to uphold the Constitution of the country,’ the letter said.
‘That short-term expediency should not take precedence over ethical standards is something rooted with the teaching or all religions that we claim to profess in this land. These high moral teachings must be our guide and the lamp that must light our actions. We call upon the President to safeguard the Constitution and honour the mandate given to him.’
Bishop Canagasabey said the Church of Ceylon wished to reiterate that the Constitution is the supreme law of the land and called on the public service, the police and the armed forces to remain faithful to the constitution and to conduct themselves in a manner worthy of their office.
The Church of Ceylon also appealed to the President to take initiatives to resolve this impasse, keeping in mind the solemn promises given to the people of the country who voted him into office, and his oath to uphold the constitution of the country.