19 June, 2021

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‘Parliamentary Election 2020 & Date Of Summoning Of The New Parliament’

By S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole

Prof. S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole

I refer to the Daily Mirror article, of today’s date (10 April, 2020), on the date for summoning the new Parliament after elections, and The Island’s two pieces yesterday on the same topic. I am in “Lockdown” in Jaffna and write on my own as a Member of the Election Commission in response to Dr. P.B. Jayasundara’s letter. 

Dr. Jayasundara wrongly starts the Daily Mirror interview: “President’s Secretary P.B.Jayasundara in a reply to the Chairman of Election Commission said that the date for fixing the poll is the responsibility of the Election Commission and therefore the question of reference to the Supreme Court in terms of Article 129 of the Constitution does not arise.” He is missing the point. Reference is urgent.

Yes, fixing the date for polls is the EC’s responsibility. But averting a constitutional crisis is the President’s more than anybody else’s, and only he can seek the constitutional advice of the Supreme Court. 

We have clearly stated that we cannot fix a date to conform to the constitutional requirement of Constitution’s Article 70(5)(a) that the date of summoning the new Parliament has to be within 3 months of the date of the Gazette for the dissolution of Parliament – which was 2 March –  making June 2 the last date the new Parliament must meet. 

Perhaps most importantly, as in yesterday’s Island’s headline, “Dr. P. B. Jayasundara, Secretary to the President, has written to Mahinda Deshapriya, Chairman of the Election Commission, pointing out that the latter has failed to act according to the full provisions of Section 24 of the Parliamentary Elections Act and should have published another date for the general election as per Section 24 (3) of the Act.  

Dr. Jaysundara is mistaken. Section 24(3) says where due to an emergency or unforeseen circumstances the poll cannot be taken on the date already specified under Section 24(1) in any electoral district the Commission may by order published in the Gazette appoint another day for the taking of such poll, and such other day shall not be earlier than the fourteenth day after the publication of the order of the Gazette. Section 24(3) says that when the poll cannot be taken on the date already specified under Section 24(1) in any electoral district due to an emergency or unforeseen circumstances, the commission may, by order published in the Gazette, appoint another day for the taking of the poll. Further, Section 24(3) specifies that the revised date may not be earlier than the fourteenth day after the publication of the order of the Gazette.

First, Dr. Jayasundara should say should publish, not should have published. We can still publish; no time frame is prescribed. Moreover, on that, the word may gives us discretion.

Dr. Jayasundara further says “As per the advice by His Excellency, it is not possible at this point of time to state that the election cannot be held on or before 28.05.2020.” First, advice to whom? Second, former Justice Minister Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe,  who is quoted thus in yesterday’s (9 April, 2020) Island: 

“Asked by Shamindra Ferdinado how the President and the EC could reach consensus on a new date, in terms of the Constitution and the Parliamentary Election Act, PC Rajapakse stressed that the issue couldn’t be resolved in line with available Constitutional provisions, or the Parliamentary Election Act.”

Dr. PB Jayasundera

That is, a constitutional impasse is imminent according to the President’s loyalist.

Dr. Jayasundara further states “I need hardly emphases that it is the right of the people of this country to exercise their franchise, which their sovereign right [sic.]”

Indeed, it is because of that right that the Commission stated that the elections cannot be held on time for the new Parliament to meet by 2 June, 2020. If we set that date, it would mean one of two things. One, the public in fear of CORONA-19 would not stand in lines to vote. That means they will lose their franchise, but will exercise their franchise if we do not rush into polls and watch the situation. This care for the franchise of the people therefore seems insincere and disingenuous to me, to service a narrow political agenda rather than any national cause as the time urgently calls for.

And Two, if not the scenario envisaged under One, if we guestimate when the pandemic will be over, and set a date and the pandemic is still raging, people will go to the polls, stand in crowded lines, and spread this life-threatening virus. Alternatively, we might have 225 MPs elected with a handful of votes each as happened in the 1990s when EPDP MPs got returned sometimes with under 10 votes as a result of LTTE death threats against those who go to vote.

Dr. Jaysundara again misses the point in his assertion that “the question of Reference to the Supreme Court in terms of Article 129 of the Constitution does not arise,” . Come 2 June, 2020, the Constitution and the Elections Act will be violated. We at the Commission are the experts with people who have spent their working lives on elections. They are emphatic that there is no way in which the new parliament  can meet by June 2.The obstacle is not only CoVID, but also thedemand for excessive holidays that are upcoming, and the national tendency to truancy until an auspicious day.

Mahinda Deshapriya

Already, there is customary worker absenteeism during the new year and Vesak. This, by itself, makes June 2 less probable than we might optimistically imagine. Postal ballots in high response places like Anuradhapura (with many soldiers) were a small fraction of what should have come in when the curfews started. Will the post office staff, whom we cannot control, deliver the remaining registered post without waiting for auspicious times?

I figure that even the president is experiencing that staff absenteeism. For, his hardly two-page letter of 6 April, has the errors in thought pointed out that are corrected only when the normal complement of staff is present. Moreover, it has seven errors of grammar, not counting mistakes I might have missed – meaning that even the language editors are not coming to work despite the President’s reputation for discipline. How can we in a more relaxed organization imagine an error-free election with all poll cards and legally prescribed forms done right?

We do not want to go there where laws are violated without care as seems inevitable from the refusal to consult the Supreme Court, and we find ourselves with a fixed poll date that is unlikely to work out. We need resolution. Only the Supreme Court’s direction, even if we do not agree with whatever it might say, has no appeal and will give finality to whatever we do. That right of consultative appeal is defined under Article 129(1) of the constitution: 

If at any time it appears to the President of the Republic that a question of the law or fact has arisen or is likely to arise which is of such nature and of such public importance that it is expedient to obtain the opinion of the Supreme Court upon it, he may refer that question to the Court for consideration and the Court may, after such hearing as it thinks fit within the period specified in such reference  or within such time as may be extended by the President, report to the President its opinion thereon.”

Note – only the President can ask the Supreme court for advice, and even specify a date by which the answer has to be given. Whatever opinion the Supreme Court gives cannot be appealed. If the Commission on its own chooses to act unilaterally, someone will go to court and the matter will drag on beyond 2 June anyway.

It is good to recall Article 33(1)(d) of the Constitution:

33. (1) (d) It shall be the duty of the President to on the advice of the Election Commission, ensure the creation of proper conditions for the conduct of free and fair elections and referenda. 

We, the Commission, invoked this provision when advising President Maithripala Sirisena not to postpone the long overdue provincial elections. Here, although I wanted this provision explicitly invoked, the Chairman did not and said that Mr. Abeyesekere also did not want to.

Although we did not invoke 33(1)(d), it is there. Whether we explicitly invoked the article or not, I believe the President is duty-bound to heed our advice as contained in our letters of 31 March and 1 April 2020. It is best for the president to revoke his Gazette of 2 March. Parliament will then run smoothly just as it did after the Supreme Court declared the 27 October 2017 dismissal of parliament by Maithripala Sirisena illegal. The Parliament elected on 17 Aug. 2015 can go on until 5 years after its first meeting on 1 Sept. 2015. That could give us a way out of this Corona crisis. It is best, however, if the Supreme Court gives this advice. Either way, it is in President Rajapaksa’s hands; not in the Election Commission’s as he makes out.

The military has been directing traffic from even before the crisis. Curfews, although good for fighting Corona, have no legal basis. So those being arrested for breaking curfew cannot be charged. The IGP has no business arresting those who criticize the government. Some say that subsections 6, 7 and 8 of Article 15 permit the derogation of some rights in an emergency in the interests of the economy, national security, public order, the protection of public health or morality, etc. But on close reading all these restrictions on our rights must be prescribed by law.  That means even the curfews must have the authority of parliament. 

The curfews and restrictions are excused as being good for these difficult times – it is but a sleight of hand when the restrictions can easily get the blessings of our representatives in Parliament. Why are we denied a parliament at these critical times? Is it because our rights can be curtailed without parliamentary oversight? It seems to me that when there is a lawful way to restrict our fundamental rights, an institutional crisis is being precipitated to do away with the law in the name of doing good. 

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Latest comments

  • 46
    4

    Bless you, Prof. Hoole, for yet again speaking out.
    .
    I seem to be pasting this link all over the place during the past few hours, AND Prof. Hoole won’t understand a word of it since it is in Sinhalese.
    .
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qN5zfWpm91k
    .
    What that doctor on the video is saying is that we could have been really quite safe had the diabolical election nominations not been proceeded with. As it is, the Rajapaksas seem to have pulled off yet another coup. The divided UNP was forced to submit lists from the two groups of that disorganised party. Even if elections are held only two years from now (not an impossibility, although I obviously exaggerate) the opposition to the Rajapaksas will be divided.
    .
    Who suffers? All of us Sinhalese do – deservingly since we have allowed it in this country which we own by the grace of Gautama Buddha. Will the Tamils and the Muslims suffer? Yes, even more, and undeservingly.
    .
    Thanks, Prof. Hoole. Having elections is NOT manipulating. Why is it that only a handful of persons understand that?

    • 21
      2

      Dear Mr SM,
      thanks for taking this up. This good doctor from Matara is raising a set of valid points.

      Right at the moment, the rulers make every effort to paint the picture as if they have managed it so good. There are also whole lot of evidence to prove that their distributions of free food rations are only to those who re supporting the SLPP. With free media being blacked out, people are kept in dark today, I would say, though only TV Derana and Hiru are only channels being seen given the priority for any kind of headline makers.
      :
      Further to tell you, please compare hithero numbers of Vietnam (a country wth a population of 100 mio) and those of Nepal ( a country with a population of 29 mio) are relatively low. I wonder how could Nepal achieve it even if that country is even pooer than Srilanka ?

      And we know what srilankens have been doing today, should have been implementing very earlier as of the begining of March. The very same mistake is the case with Newyork, as the analysts criticise today. They should have been doing what they ve been doing today.. If so, they could reduce rate of deaths per day.
      :

    • 25
      6

      It is obvious that if you cannot elect a new parliament, there is going to be a crisis. House was dissolved with the undertaking that elections will be held in due course and a new parliament will be in place by 2nd of June. On this basis a caretaker government was formed with those in the cabinet continuing their official positions of power. This caretaker government cannot legally function after that date. This is going to cause a constitutional crisis of not having a government in place. Rajapkses want to create chaos and tighten their grip on power and will try their tricks to achieve it. At the moment their is crisis similar to war, which in effect is an emergency. So the best solution is to declare emergency and summon the old house back and continue business till this epidemic subsides and becomes possible to hold elections fairly.

      • 8
        1

        Dear Dr S,
        .
        Creating an another crisis is their motive. They returned to power, to block all the numerous investigations filed against them, in all Rajapkshe circles. Over 90% them were not just alleged, but provable facts. However, people dont care, about the the justice being served, but to be slaves. Let them enjoy it. :: THAT IS WHAT I FELT MYSELF after I heard this ballige puthas became the leaders to this nation again. We are so fed up of some protions in our country.
        :
        Besides, What matters to brother duo is not to rule in accordance with a constiutiton, but to be leaders that we learnt in medieval times. So long peoples bear their mentality of slaves , this could work, but for sure not for a better future.
        :
        I also believe, TAMILS and MUSLIMS should not be silent anymore…. this is also their country.. whoever whatever being said and done. Just allowing rascals to govern to the manne rthey think is right… we can only create a country similar to that of Zimbabwe after Mugabe the tyrannt.

      • 3
        0

        Dear Dr. Sankaralingam., Let Rajapaksha family to rule and ruin., let’s wait and see..

        Thanks for your comment.

        • 1
          0

          You are absolutely correct. This is why I asked Tamils to either vote for Gota or refrain from voting. Tamils have to play their game wisely to get their rights. I do not know why this is not penetrating the numb skull of Sumanthiran.

          • 1
            1

            The same reason why nothing penetrates yours I guess.

            • 0
              0

              Slow down, SJ. Perhaps in your hurry, you are equating the skull penetrability of MAS and SG, both highly educated members of our society. If that was not your intention, please could you elaborate on the reason you are referring to.

              • 0
                0

                N
                Sorry if I seem to be equating. The response was in the spirit of the comment of SG, who does not hesitate to call any person who challenges him a fool, idiot etc.
                The latter’s, I should say, is far more impermeable.

          • 0
            0

            Good doctor, there would be some credibility to your suggestion had you been living in Sri Lanka and hoping for everything to collapse. Sumanthiran, in that environment, has to walk a tightrope. It is not the same for remote-control Tamil nationalists, living comfortably in the UK, volunteering other peoples’ children into a war they had no chance of winning. You and your ilk have done enough damage. Let us, Tamils living here, navigate a path that will give us a chance of survival.

    • 24
      3

      Dear SM,
      .
      SRILANKENS university dons and community disease experts have made it very clear.
      .
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zx-j_8QUSpc.
      .
      GMOA, is not the scientific body even if they acts as if they are….
      .
      But their real face is well known ot the public until lately. GMOA strikes one behind the other is not yet out of the people memories.
      :
      They just worked diehard to bring Rajapakshes back to loot this nation.

      • 14
        0

        GMOA is really a trade union of sorts with a highly biased group in control.

      • 7
        0

        Thanks to gutless ranil and gon sira

      • 0
        0

        Dear Sensitive SLANKEN,
        .
        Many thanks. Yes, the speaker here speaks clearly, with knowledge and authority. And, of course, the recording is of much better quality.
        .
        I hope even non-Sinhalese readers will make a point of listening to this.

    • 3
      1

      This is what I found on this.

      I think there are lot more people that would want to stand against EC.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nhNrfc5xvk

      I dont respect this CHAPA …. but his information through his VIDEO clip can help us to discuss it further.

    • 17
      1

      President Gotabaya and Basil have not voted at a parliamentary election for 31 long long years after 1989.

      They trying to tell the election commission what to do is a joke!

      Hats off to the Election Commission. Stick to your guns! Do not let the president bulldoze the franchise by holding elections during the pandemic.

      • 0
        0

        Thinker –
        The two Americans have one hidden plan, viz they want to get at that 2/3rd victory by hook or crook taking advantage of the lockdown, with a shivering EC (Remember the previous EC
        Dayanand has gone missing!). The urgency for the 2/3rd is to move the 19th amendment to
        incorporate a clause for lifetime immunity for all Sl Presidents. This will prevent the awaited
        charges in the USA. Gota is supported by the Army who themselves fear Charges.

    • 9
      0

      Hey it’s not about who wins. It’s about we can have the conducive environment for elections.

    • 2
      7

      Mr. Mrs. Sinhala Man,
      /
      mobile-logo
      APRIL 11, 2020AUTHOR: AMEER ALI0 COMMENTS
      Covid-19 Militarisation: Gota’s Dress Rehearsal
      FacebookTwitterWhatsAppShare
      By Ameer Ali –
      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/covid-19-militarisation-gotas-dress-rehearsal/

    • 2
      0

      TODAY the numbers of COVID infected in the world are rapidly on a rise. we cant yet see nor think of a light at th end of the tunnel regarding getting rid of the virus. so how can we ever keep hopes ? is there anyone on earth that could stop it instantly ? answer is no.no so called divine or invisible or other forces could help either. it is just the real nature and unpredictability of the virus is not yet fully clear to anyone. I dont know about you, but I feel, we the human beings are not that much advanced than a century ago. we cant boast about having found a lot for the benefit of the nation. what the people have discovered so far is comparable a drop of an ozean. we are realizing today, that viruses could destroy almost everything within a short period of time. we are all the same, we people must not hate each other just because of our ethnic background, creed or anything else. those who live like frogs in a well continue doing so, while others across world have already realized it.

    • 0
      0

      Parliament is in the eve of its suspension giving into the public pressure that since the Parliamentarians and the Parliament have committed grave criminal offences betraying people’s sovereignty entrusted with them to exercise it on behalf of the people for the betterment of the people.Since the people are fully convinced that existing judiciary by its own conduct as once again revealed by CD recordings,will send the Parliamentary racketeers Scot free humiliating the general public, the people’s increasingly growing appeal to the President with whom the sovereignty of the people is placed with an overwhelming majority is to deal with the parliamentary plunderers,recover the huge amount of money extorted and robbed before any election is held.Furthermore since the Parliament has been found to be aiding and abetting the parliamentarians to plunder peoples wealth it is the appeal to the President not to have elections until the Parliament is also properly dealt with. Therefore anybody interested in renewing or re summoning the Parliament needs to first support the President to deal with the Parliamentary marauders as well as the Parliament that has aided and abetted the Parliamentary Plunderers to plunder the country before talking about any election.

  • 16
    1

    Ratnajeevan Hoole.
    If the President does not seek SC’s advice and the EC also does not, can a citizen appeal to the SC to rule on the reconvening of a legally dissolved Parliament? If a citizen can why dies not the ex MPs not appealing to the SC? If all hold on to their position what will happen after June 2nd and COVID 19 problem is eliminated?

    • 0
      1

      Correction. Please delete my last two questions.

  • 21
    2

    This man, who is now the Secretary to the President, who wrote the Chairman of EC is a person who was “JUDGED” by the Supreme Courts and “DEBARRED” from holding any “PUBLIC OFFICE” and was imposed a fine of Rs. 200,000.00 on conviction of a “Criminal Offence”. Who “CLEARED” him to accept this responsible post and to whom he is the Secretary? That explains his nature and strength of his communication with the Election Commission. More than this writer, a member of the EC, I await the response of the Chairman of EC. He will definitely tell him what he needs to know. How these “CONVICTS” hold responsible positions in the Government machinery is a shame for the entire country and degrading to the respectability of the Civil Service.

    • 3
      1

      Douglas,
      those who should long be in a jail, have become the leaders.
      :
      So what more talks ? Entire country is in a mess:
      .
      Why cant they buy the vegetables from those farmers and distribute them under the guidance of the state at least athis critical juncture of the country.
      :
      Today, I see, that they dont even think of SOCIAL distancing .. i have no doubt, lot more poor people will be caught by the VIRUS in the days to come.
      :
      If CRIMINALS become leaders of a country, what good can we expect ?

  • 5
    0

    Panini. I came across the name Panini who was a Sanskrit scholar who lived around 450 BCE. Not much else is known about him.
    Were you Named after him?

    • 0
      10

      Panini is some turkish food I suppose.

      • 6
        1

        JD – Panini is some food meant for Just Donkeys like you!

        • 4
          1

          Mr Meer,
          .
          Dont insult donkeys. ..


          All back lickers of Rajaakshes even worst than donkeys.

        • 3
          0

          Though they are written the same way, they are pronounced differently.
          Name Panini (wise man) is derived from the Pali word Panna meaning wisdom and is pronounced as Paanini.
          Food Panini is a sandwich originally made from Italian bread, and Turks also make it. It is pronounced as Paneeni.

    • 2
      0

      Naga,
      what a stupid question ? Do any of us know why our parents or relatives chose such names ? Is that clear to you, why youa re called Nagalingam Ethirversansigam ?
      As if you have nothing else to question come with the kind of post is beyond all bearing … please let this forum be somewhat educative .. thank you.

    • 0
      0

      Thanks, Ethir,
      .
      It was nice of you (a Tamil – in this country our people insist on attaching these labels) to reach out to a “Sinhala_Man” in that way. I saw it early, but also saw that we were going astray, although I must acknowledge that there is a rather obscure Turkish connection that I didn’t know until JD said it. All other comments also make sense, but when put together this digression was looking frivolous.
      .
      I was becoming an Exasperated and “Frustrated sinhalaya”, but I think that all that is safely past, and, being conscious of typical reader habits not many will return here.
      .
      Yes, my father named me after the Sanskrit linguist, but he used to go along with the practice of asking astrologers for the initial sounds appropriate for the eight kids my mother bore him. Panini’s work is very significant. It is used, even today, in constructing computer languages – the insights, that is, although they are beyond me. Those who are interested can go in to all that in some depth using just the Internet.
      .
      Naturally, I found out something about the guy I was named for, but I have actually met four others with the name, and know of two other Sri Lankans who had got the name. It gave me pleasure to ferret out the distinguished architect, Panini Tennakoon, in his Gregory’s Road house, a few years before he passed away. He did not know the significance that you kindly inquired after.
      .
      I hope that new readers chancing on this will just chuckle and focus on the important subject of this article.

    • 1
      0

      NE
      Panini was the first known grammarian in any language. He probably complied existing rules into a comprehensive text. A well known extensive commentary was made by Patanjali in the 2nd Century.
      Tamil grammar was inspired by Panini’s work, although many Tamil ‘scholars’ are reluctant to accept that.
      There is plenty available on the Internet if you search for Panini grammarian.

  • 0
    9

    Some one says, do not go to elections when the country’s economic condition is bad. Need to think about that too. It is the village that voted mostly to the present president. So, there is another side to be concerned about.

  • 14
    0

    Jayasundara is a corrupted fellow like Ali Baba and 40 thieves.
    As soon as Gotabhaya was elected as a president again all corrupted thieves joined together to steal public money again.

    All these CORRUPTED CREATURES MUST BE INFECTED.

  • 17
    1

    Thanks to the 6.9 Million of our sinhala Buddhist Modayas, we are in this position today. Tamils and Muslims were smart enough to know this man well ahead.
    His interest is not.the country but his power. He did not bother about covid till March 2nd and March 17 till the nominations are received.
    Then he puts the country in curfew with all groceries and pharmacies closed. No country in the world did this. Only the the millitary and and politicians are guaranteed food not the average man. Free distribution to the.needy is only.in Derana and Hiru news. People.go out in search.of food to feed their household are.arrested with no.legal backing. I understand from my Tamil Friends, Army beat up man who went to the.hungle.to fetch.firewood to cook, I wonder what social non distancing in the jungle. Only.reason is racism of the President trickling down the army commander to the soldiers.
    Now all of a sudden by Aril 19th covid will vanish according to health minister.
    I suggest Hoole as a citizen should.go to Supreme Court. He is the only Professional in this country. All our sinhala.modayas are cowards and intellectually corrupt.
    What a sad state of Sinala Buddhist country
    When there is.a danger to democracy, Tamils have to save the country
    Sir.Ponnampalam Ramanathan, Sumanthiran,Ratnajeevan Hoole

    • 14
      1

      Dilshan,
      You are absolutely correct.
      As you mentioned no one understand what will happen in the future.
      This man definitely will become a HITLER.
      These people have no sense and brain at all.
      Yellow robe monks are the main and key figure who brought this country to this disaster.
      COVID-19 must punish them soon.

    • 6
      0

      There will be a shocking defeat if there is an election.

      so there won’t be one at least until the Corvid is done it will last 2 years

    • 2
      3

      Dilshan,
      Sinhalaya Modaya
      Kewun Kanna Yodhaya
      Yuda Karanne Sooraya
      Thema lunge Maaraya

      “All our sinhala.modayas are cowards and intellectually corrupt.”
      —-
      If Sinhala Modayas are cowards, how did they defeat the deadliest terrorists who slaughtered Native Sinhalayo.

      “When there is.a danger to democracy, Tamils have to save the country”

      ‘Para’ Demalu want democracy so that they can play hell as they did since the time this country gained Independence. Instead of saving the country Demalu ruined this country.
      Native Sinhalayo want autocracy under Gotabhaya Rajapakshe.

  • 2
    17

    Colombo Telegraph GO TO HELL

  • 12
    12

    The issue of election date should not be allowed to be converted in to an issue people like Hoole and Deshapriya want to use to ‘polish’ their egos.
    /
    The issue here is, an unexpected natural calamity hit the country ‘after’ a date had been announced for parliamentary elections of the country. No one can predict with certainty, when the edidemic is going to acceptable levels, allowing the conduct of the election.
    /
    What is necessary now is not the start a Supreme Court drama with no consequence (the judges can’t end the pandemic), costing the country unnecessarily, but to wait till the medical advice on the reduction of the threat of the epidemic.
    /
    The current administration arrangements have not caused any issues with the running of the country (except for a great reduction of expenses on the sustenance of the 225 rogues in parliament).
    So there is no urgency on rushing to an election, putting peoples’ lives in danger.
    /
    People like Hoole and Deshapriya shouldn’t be under the delusion that their egos and the elections they administer should determine everything else in the country. Elections only matter if people live, and saving their lives is the prime responsibility of the president at the moment.
    /
    Elections can wait, and the country doesn’t care. There is no hurry to go the Supreme Court, irrespective of the opinions of Deshapriya and Hoole who are in it for their own reasons.

  • 10
    2

    You are a brave man. Even though we have enjoyed universal adult franchise since 1931 , been independent since 1948 and a Republic since 1972, there are few who think independently as individuals who hold sovereignty in their hands. Most seek political patronage and live under a Serf mentality.

    • 5
      1

      Max , are u still alive ? Obviously yes.
      :
      I thought all those senior backlickers of Rajapakshes are already caught by COVID 19 and gone.
      .

      • 0
        0

        No, No I am very much alive.
        In fact I had a dip in the Madawala in your absence.

        We had one hell of a game, like snakes if you know what I mean!

  • 4
    14

    While this country and the whole world is facing COVID-19 pandemic and likely to face a serious economic crisis, this guy is talking about election.
    With the political system this country inherited from ‘Para’ Suddas and tinkered by JRJ, this country went through hell after gaining independence.
    President Rajapakshe should use the opportunity created by COVID-19 crisis and postpone election indefinitely and run the country with iron rule to come out from the economic crisis.
    Forget demo-crazy. Ban all political parties operating on ethnic and religious lines. Use money meant for election and money that has to be used to maintain 225 MPs for the benefit of ordinary folks who are suffering.
    Right now, President, Prime Minister and the Cabinet is handling the crisis in hand very efficiently with dedicated Government Officers and members of the Armed Forces. They should follow the same method to handle the economic crisis.
    Those who do not like can use that as an excuse to seek political asylum.

    • 5
      4

      Yes, As you say, it means, you have to ban political parties, that operate to enrich the Sinhalese (ethnic line) & buddhist (religious line). It is a good idea.

  • 5
    8

    “I…write on my own as a Member of the Election Commission in response to Dr. P.B. Jayasundara’s letter.”
    How can one do that?
    It can only be a response not binding on the EC.
    There are institutional rules of conduct for which the writer shows disregard
    *
    There is a constitutional crisis which the Supreme Court will need to address at some stage soon.

    • 3
      0

      //“I…write on my own as a Member of the Election Commission in response to Dr. P.B. Jayasundara’s letter.”
      How can one do that?//
      A better way to express this would be: “The author is a member of the Election Commission, writing in a personal capacity”, or say “The views I express here are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Commission as a whole”. But what he means is very clear from context. Instead of picking on trivial matters, we should focus on the more serious issues being raised here, which is Jayasundara defending the President blaming it on Devapriya and the Commission.

      • 2
        0

        Noodles
        The man knows the language.
        He can express his personal views. But when he says as “I write as a member of …” there is an issue and implications, which you should recognize.
        This is not the first time it has happened and is no accident.
        The Commission has been pretty incompetent for most of its life.

  • 13
    4

    The objective of the Mahinda group is to manipulate the COVIND18 condition on the island to the advantage of their Lotus Bud party to win the elections. If such stringent rules such as social distance, confined to the house, Curfew, etc how can you expect Political meetings could be held. How can people go about and vote? The best solution is to act as per 70(7) of the constitution. Any legal doubts should be cleared by SC and not bu Lotus Bud party

    • 5
      1

      Pon,
      .
      I am bit angered with COVID 19 virus today, why not MR is not yet infected.
      I cant see the guy any more, … considering all the loads of high crimes his mediation created to this nation.
      :
      Evils more than his little good done giving some leadership to the relay race of CIVIL war. It was about to be made, but the bp et all earned the credit .. since whole lot of people are punnakku drinkers.

  • 3
    5

    EC is not giving out the list of the candidates because elections are to recycle the same lot of crooks. Why EC members are so keen to reelect the same lot of crooks

  • 2
    17

    When a President govern the country properly with his PM and the selected lot of ministers why do we need elections ?. It is a waste or money and resources and just fooling people in the name of crooks desire to become parasites. Let this president continue it. If he does a good job then we have elections based on that out come. Not the trend is not to have crooked elections just to waste money, resources and time.

    • 1
      7

      …….Now the trend is……….

  • 0
    14

    This Commission of (not holding) Elections are only interested in excuses how not to hold elections which is the wish of the UNP/JVP lot who are lost in a political wilderness.
    What this commission (not in holding) election must do is to prepare for the elections on it due date as we in Sri Lanka have had elections under much trying circumstances than this.
    Assuming that “corona” will be conquered by the time of elections the EC can prepare for the due date. They have the power to make people work and double their staff if need be to hold the election on the due date.
    What the EC, if they are unable do what is required of them, are unable to discharge their duties in a timely manner, should resign and let someone who can do it take their place instead of playing a ball passing game.

  • 16
    1

    Dr Hoole thanks for fearlessly speaking the truth.

  • 3
    24

    Prof Hoole, it is so obvious that you are UNP stooge saying and doing what they want. You are a real disgrace to the independent elections commission. If I read the constitutional provisions as quoted in the papers, it appears to me that the commission can nominate any day no EARLIER than 14 days from the date of the gazette nominating a date for the election. So why doesn’t the commission go ahead and nominate a day before the 3rd of June? If we could hold elections in the North & East whilst the LTTE was murdering people, don’t see why we can’t hold an election with Corona. Many countries are conducting election. With the current pandemic including Australia and USA. It will be less crowded than a grocery store Que. Without trying to tell the Presidentcwhat do do the EC should do its job.

    • 15
      2

      Its a shame that the President had nobody to appoint as his Secretary other than this corrupt guy P.B.Jayasundera. How was P.B.Jayasundera able to handle the position of Governor, Central bank without the ability to write a decent letter in English? Shame on him and even the Central Bank.

      • 6
        1

        Pluto@
        .
        Just tell us any good thing the brother DUO have done sofar ?
        .
        Thanks to ECommissioner, scheduled GE is stopped.
        :
        Thanks to Tri forces and police, they have been doing a good work with COVID 19 containment steps.
        .
        Thanks to some donators it is still okay.

        :
        But bp brothers did not do the least for the benefit of the nation yet,:
        :
        They the stupid brother duo is f##ked by GMOA fooling them DAWN to DUSK.. but people are intelligent and they know GMOA is nothing but a trade union.. and they arenot specialists in COMMUNITY DISEASES control. –

        People are highly vulnerable, so any LIES could become the HEADLINES of the day in favour of BP Rajakshes.
        :
        If they should have been doing what they have been doing today. We an another ISLAND nation would have been FREE from COVID 19 anxities.
        :

    • 7
      1

      More than LTTE was murdering people in the North and East. Now they are killing the people in the south as well with Starvation while Ranaviru is having.well.stocked food.

  • 3
    10

    Isn’t the Chairman of the E Commission smart enough to reply to a letter which was addressed to him?..

    Is Professor Hoole smarter than the Chairman?.

    Are they both smarter than PC Ali , who looks after the President and the Lankawe Constitution without even getting paid ?..

    • 11
      2

      PC Ali aubry is the worst objective lawyer. A boot licker. Ratnajeevan Hoole one of the brightest people in this country

  • 6
    4

    Ratnajeevan:
    ‘Parliamentary Election 2020 & Date Of Summoning Of The New Parliament’
    *** First of all you say you are in Lockdown. No you got the meaning all wrong. We here in the UK are in Lockdown which means we have Freedom to move provided we have justifiable reasons for going out. You are under Curfew which means if you break the Curfew you can be Shot especially if you are LTTE supporter. You wont be asked to prove just your look ( suspicious) is enough.
    Now getting on to the topic.
    What is the point talking about elections when there is no Nation to Govern and No one to rule and let me tell you why.
    The World is Bankrupt and so is Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is one of the Countries in the list who is most vulnerable and without outside help Sri Lanka wont come out of this especially under Gotha thanks to the majority who voted for him.
    According to CBK who is now doing the bidding reckons Sri Lanka needs $8000 Million. Let us look at the Donors
    America apparently promised $1.3 Million
    EC Countries apparently promised $22 million
    World Bank apparently willing to give
    For education $140 Million
    —————–
    Total $163.3 million

    Ratnajeevan can you tell me where the rest and especially the money to hold elections will come from. I can go into more detail but I am sure Cabaraal and Basil the THIEFS have worked it out
    China I have heard will be willing to give $2000 Million subject to Gotha agreeing to Lease more Territory to her and India has said she will insist on a Military Presence.

    • 1
      7

      “You are under Curfew which means if you break the Curfew you can be Shot especially if you are LTTE supporter. “
      Has anyone been shot at for violating curfew?

      • 7
        1

        SJ

        Under Gotha killings are extrajudicial. No records are kepr. Got it IDIOT. Even if the killers are identified they will be PARDONED . Got it STUPID.

        • 2
          1

          Kali: Could you not have said this without calling him idiot and stupid?

          • 1
            1

            Nivea ( Cream)

            I am sure you can see it from victims point of view if you have any soothing qualities. Any one who condones Gotha the CRIMINAL deserves to called such names and I make no apologies.

          • 0
            0

            N
            Even without the swear words, what K said is not an answer to my question “Has anyone been shot at for violating curfew?”
            When one has nothing to say usefully, one resorts to abuse.
            *
            As for K’s response to you: To read meaning into text which only puts the record right reflects a twisted frame of mind.

        • 0
          0

          K
          It should take less than average intelligence to understand that my comment was about curfew violators being shot at.
          Do not get into a frenzy of swearing just because a false claim got busted.
          Try a good sedative.

      • 3
        1

        Almost killed because he went to fetch firewood in the Jungle. He was beaten by army resulting in severe.injuries in Mullaithivu. They were practicing same old racism

    • 1
      0

      Dear Kali,
      .
      There is great peril for all in the Economic Downturn. However, the cost of not having elections will be greater than the cost of the election.
      .
      Now more than ever it is important to have “free and fair elections”. How glibly that phrase now comes to us – so clichetic as to be meaningless. Why waste five thousand words describing what F&F should really encompass? Those who break the rules well know what is meant.
      .
      A not-very-bright Lawyer-pupil of mine telephones me regularly. Others wait for me to call them! This guy is not computer-literate. He was talking about us getting “foreign aid” like after the Tsunami. Forget it, I said. All countries are in the same pickle. So with individuals. I will help where I can, but I see the need to be conscious that we all depend on Dawkins’ “selfish gene” to carry us and our progeny to relative success. There will be no more naive donors: they will all demand their pound of flesh.
      .
      Old Royalist SJ is a brilliant commenter, and I think that he has made a valid point. The qualification you make is even more worthwhile. Nivea is right. The more disciplined your comment, the more weight that will be attached to what you say.

      .
      However, I’m suspicious of pseudonyms. SJ hates the Hooles, especially Jeevan, although he is fair enough to acknowledge some of Jeevan’s virtues. But who is “KumarR”? I continue to harbour the suspicion that Professor Sivasekeram is hiding there, too.
      .
      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/challenging-three-cheating-thomian-pharisees-and-not-doing-it-from-behind/
      .
      KumarR reveals there that he is a Royalist. Some may miss subtle allusions; that is why the main message must be made explicit. My respect for Sivasekeram remains, but less than it would be if the pettiness disappeared.

      • 0
        0

        SM
        I stopped responding to you since your thoughtless repetition of falsehoods by the you-know-whos.
        This association of me with Kumar, who makes some valid points that seem to upset you, has been denied by Kumar several times.
        You accuse me once again of ‘hiding’ in Kumar. YOU ARE PATHETIC.
        *
        I know that the CT-based mafia that miserably failed in its dishonest bid to seize the UoJ resents me.
        I had not made personal comments on any, including the Hooles, despite unprovoked personal attacks by one of them.
        I do not hate people but hate acts in bad faith.
        *
        Get this right for once and for all: I comment only on issues; but ridicule, I meet with ridicule.
        I will not respond to you ever.

  • 2
    3

    Dr. Jayasundara further states “I need hardly emphases that it is the right of the people of this country to exercise their franchise, which their sovereign right [sic.]”

    Many thousands of Sri Lankans who are currently overseas cannot return to their motherland due to the airport being closed. Once the airport is reopened and they have the opportunity to return, they will need to be quarantined for at least 14 days.

    These people must to be given the right to exercise their franchise as well.

  • 9
    0

    Mahinda family always tried to capture power after people said “good bye” to them in 2015. Unfortunately, the people’s sacrifice was messed up with power hungry Sirisena and Ranil and failed to take legal actions against the criminals. The fearful Poor Sinhala masses and those hardline Buddhist extremism and Ranil-Sirisena power battle lead to the come back of the power hungry Rajapaksa family through back door after the failed political coups in October 2018. Now judiciary is not powerful and family dictatorship is in rule. Their focus did not change and the armed forces are behind them and they have powers and will to eliminate those who are on their way to achieve their full power to Mahinda family.

  • 10
    6

    A morally courageous, impregnably argued and most valuable rebuttal. Thank you, Prof Hoole.

    A pity that it has not yet made the mainstream media, especially the electronic media.

    • 1
      0

      Dear Native,

      I am surprised those Intelligentsia who support the Diaspora , the LTTE, the West , the UNP , Dr Rani and and the new Opp Leader Sajith from Kesewatta do not make such encouraging statements for this brave Election Commissioner, who is still serving our inhabitants in Lakawe even while in Isolation in Jaffna…………

  • 1
    3

    So….
    What is the solution..?
    /
    Let “Yahapalana” government to continue another 5 years without a election….
    Or…..
    Let civil society to appoint a caretaker government of their choice of personalities.
    Or…..
    Let minority manipulaters to appoint a international government for SL.
    Or……
    Let self appointed guardian of democracy Ratnajeevan Hoole to run the country.
    Or….
    Let Saudi appointed Islamic Sharia Council to run the country………
    /
    While you are at it why not cancel the November presidential election and restate MY3 & Ranil government to protect YOUR no election democracy.

    • 3
      0

      You such an arsehole. Anyone other than backlickers of.Rajafuckse can make statements like this. When your dockers manipulate you talk nonsense.because.ypu can not answer them logically

  • 3
    2

    when singala modaya opposition leaders like RANIL,SAJITH,MANGALA,SARATH FONSEKA are still not strongly attacking the government regarding recalling the sitting of parliament and about calling for polls under illegal police curfew only TAMILS AND MUSLIM LEADERS SUCH AS HOOLE,SUMANTHIRAN,AND HAKEEM HAVE COME OUT WITH FORCE FULL STATEMENTS.THESE THREE AND FEW OTHERS MUST BE TAKE CARE OF THEM REGARDING CORONA WHITE AMBULANCE WHICH MITE TAKE THEM FOR SELF ISOLATION.

    • 1
      0

      pARAGAN,
      .
      if there had been no such opposition, today, they the criminals would have let the more people be infected over the dead bodies of the people.

      What is with JVPrs.. they are even more silent. In today s context, only ballige puthas have the power to act. They the rulers dont seem to respect opposition or anyone. We had the kind of authoritarian rule by 2015.
      .

  • 1
    0

    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.

    For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2

  • 3
    0

    I have no idea of what this constitutional crisis is?. What the constitutional crisis happened when a Paradesi War Criminal sat on most respectable and venerable seat of the country? He is not Lankaweyan, American, Japanese, Chinese, African, Mexican, Korean, Canadian, Indian…… Isn’t 7 million Modayas staged that underhand constitutional coup? Why did government paid coolies & agents created pandemic fear in Jaffna, Mannar, Negombo – Puttlam, Akurana, Batticaloa and in some Up Country towns. Yesterday 150 Chinese were in a bar in Mount Lavinia. Nothing happened. Day before yesterday some fishermen went to fishing in North. Rapist Navy broke their bones and sent them to hospital. Beyond, this who wants to stage a constitutional coup ? Unless UN peacekeepers enter, Lankawe history as a democratic republic is over. Light camphor and pray the 7 Million donkeys to have brought this new reality after reeling with Britain created the painful, ailing democracy for 75 years. Finally the light on the tunnels has arrived.
    Jeyeweva!

  • 3
    0

    There may be another way. Leader of the Opposition can go to Supreme Court and ask the court if the spending and borrowing by the President without the Parliament approval is correct. The decision may come out that the President does not have the power as per the Constitution. If so President has to call the Parliament back into session. If that happens then the Parliament can decide on what authority the Parliament can give i.e. the amount of funds that the country can borrow and spend. Limiting this amount and the period would allow the Parliament technically to continue until September.

  • 0
    4

    Everything what Dr. Hoole has written is Sabotaging of the govt. Every where he points out the rule book and says, either the president or the higher officials even with the good faith, they must not do anything and just follow the rule book.
    Sri lanka has more serious problems than conducting the election, spending Rs 7000 million or some thing and then get the same group of crooks re elected.
    See, Sri lanka doe snot export these days except importing of boat loads of drugs, the best stuff. . does not use foreign exchange. Yet the rupee crashed to Rs 200 (five rupees came up for something). Sri lanka has human resources at least (not the parliament) which is worth a lot. Yet rupee goes down. Who should not we prohibit importing completely. that is what countries do when their currency goes down.
    Sumanthiran is lawyer. I think he is working for the civil society. Hakeem should be also a lawyer,. He has replaced Bathiuddin.

    • 2
      0

      The comment above by Buddhist may be the way out on this issue.
      Also,the constitutional impasse in the country is not about the Covid 19 and the elections but a Virus far worse in the form of Athana, Methana,Othana….

  • 0
    4

    Going by what the writer Dr. Hoole state and the write in and attacks on the Government & Rajapakshe stance in all these, it is very clear the Freedom of Speech remains VIBRANT.
    Going by what appears undoubtedly YES.

    The question remain is the Constitution and acting to the letter of the law to maintain democracy….
    The Law is an Ass they say. Its there for guidance.
    On the other hand, where do you find a Democracy practiced to the letter of the law.
    This is the question in issue.
    The Constitution may say so but the Circumstances vary.

    Hence, it is not correct at this juncture to accept the GOSL carryout to the letter of the law on the issue of holding elections.
    On the other hand, who wants the jackals back in parliament. Among them a pack of Hyenas waiting to pounce on to legitimise their right to a Pension at the tax payers money.
    Therefore, it is nothing but reasonable to leave a broad margin on this decision of elections.
    We may never know, it may warrant the Prez to bend the Constitution in the present circumstances.
    As this is not ordinary times.
    Perfect democracies are normally relegated to Museums. There is nothing called perfect in this world.
    Better not give a hard time to the President during these difficult times.

    • 0
      0

      T
      “The Law is an Ass they say. Its there for guidance.”
      So you say that we are guided by another ass besides politicians.

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