13 August, 2020

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Reconvene Parliament: Opposition Party Leaders Tell Gota

Seven party leaders of majority members of parliament have today urged President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to reconvene parliament. Ranil Wickremesinghe, R. Sampanthan, Sajith Premadasa, Rauff Hakeem, Mano Ganeshan, Champika Ranawaka and Rishad Bathiudeen have signed the statement below:

We, the undersigned political parties and formations, representing the majority Members of Parliament, who were members of the Opposition in Parliament when it was dissolved on 2nd March 2020 wish to state as follows:

1. Against the backdrop of a public health crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the steps taken by governments to control it, a range of new challenges have emerged in Sri Lanka as well. Regrettably, the optimism that prevailed in our country until a few days ago that the spread of the virus could be managed is now receding. If further spreading of the pandemic is not decisively halted in the coming few weeks, the country will face the risk of the prevailing public health crisis being compounded by crisis situations in the economic, social, and political spheres too.

2. We are concerned that several hundreds have been infected; several thousands have lost their livelihood. Frontline health workers are putting their best efforts to protect us all risking their own safety. Their efforts should not go in vain because of our political decisions.

3. The political situation is specifically in a state of uncertainty due to the dissolution of Parliament and the absence of conditions conducive to hold parliamentary elections as stipulated. There is also no assurance that the elections could now be held on 20th June. The new date was determined by the Election Commission only a few days ago. The Commission has already indicated that this will have to be reviewed against the evolving public health situation in the country.

4. We can reasonably assume that no suitable environment is likely to prevail in the next two months to conduct a free and fair election. Similarly, we do not think the people of our country should be exposed to the unnecessary danger of a public health hazard by holding an election anytime soon. Sri Lankan people have repeatedly demonstrated their commitment to the democratic process by actively participating in election campaigns and also turning out in large numbers for voting. A free and fair poll also entails a proper campaign, which would invariably heighten the risk of the virus spreading countrywide. We are acutely aware of the exponential rise in infections last week.

5. Our country, like any democracy, is governed by three institutions with distinct and separate powers, viz, the Executive, the Legislature, and the Judiciary. All three of these organs are vital, and must be active for Rule of Law to prevail. Their functioning is more important now than at any other time – when we face an unprecedented challenge. But this crisis is taking place at a time when Parliament has been made inactive. Meanwhile, the President has also refrained from exercising the discretion to summon Parliament under Article 70 (7) of the Constitution. In view of the necessity to repeatedly postpone the Election, there is now a risk that Parliament would remain inactive for much longer.

6. It is our genuine belief that re-summoning the dissolved Parliament and through it securing the cooperation of political parties and MPs represented in the dissolved parliament would greatly contribute to the resolving of a number of urgent governance issues that have emerged amidst the crisis. Getting appropriate and new legislation passed in order to meet the public health crisis and obtaining parliamentary sanction to the utilization of monies from the Consolidated Fund are some such important and urgent functions of Parliament.

7. We are faced with an unprecedented national crisis which shows no signs of an early ending. As members of the dissolved Parliament, we are duty bound to fulfill our obligations to resolve this crisis in a spirit of responsible cooperation extended to the President. We also emphasize that all political parties and political leaders across the political divide have before them the challenge of transcending partisan agendas and working together for the common good of the people and the country amidst an unprecedented crisis.

8. We are prepared to lend our support to the government in Parliament to achieve the above so that the governance of the country can proceed properly and lawfully, in compliance with the Constitution. We assure the people of our country that we will not draw salaries nor attempt to defeat the government nor thwart any of the legitimate actions of the government during this period. Our good faith has already been demonstrated by the fact that we have cooperated fully with the government in maintaining the “curfew”, although the same has not been imposed legally.

9. In these circumstances we urge His Excellency the President to respond positively to this offer of responsible cooperation by us at this critical time, and revoke the proclamation dated 2nd March 2020 dissolving Parliament so that all of us can jointly fight to eradicate this virus, and also ensure that everything is done lawfully and in compliance with the Constitution. The President can thereafter dissolve Parliament whenever the situation becomes conducive to conduct the Election.

10. In the alternative, His Excellency should at least exercise his powers under Article 70(7) of the Constitution and summon the dissolved Parliament; and His Excellency and indeed the whole country can count on our utmost sincerity and responsible cooperation, which is being offered without any strings and only in the best interests of the country and our people.

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Latest comments

  • 23
    6

    Even our domestic dogs would respect the CONSITUTION, but even question that Rajaapakshes would ever do so is a curse.
    .
    Like or not, they have to reconvene the parliament, else, their BPs would have the chance to mislead the nation as have been seen all these weeks.

    Just for the ELECTION only these BPs respect DEMOCRACY but aftert that they question, for what purpose he should reconvene the parliament …

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaasrlpGL-I

    • 19
      3

      Dog s tail would not be straightened even if that would be put in a bamboo sheath –

      මිනිස්සු ඉන්නවා – බල්ලාගේ වලිගය වගේ. එනම් උණ බම්බුවක තැබුවද එය කෙළින් නොවනු ඇත.

      is a great saying in vernacular sinhala – which I think is well match to Rajapakshes.

    • 13
      1

      If the BPs would not respect the constitution, no more funds would be thinkable in the near future.
      :
      There are lot more small countries that they would respect their constitutions. Let s get ready to move in the path of MUGABE- Zimbabwe. Our dictatorship under BP Rajapakshes are in making.

      What the PEOPLE could do is to pray these bugger be INFECTED with the CORONA and leave us forever. Basta.

      Good riddance to the PUNNAKU drinking 69 mios. My heart is weeping for thoese POOR of the POOR, that are the 40% in the country, that are caught by the unexpected today.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrMUOC3gIlM

    • 6
      2

      Uvindu Kurukulasuriya

      Where are you?
      My friend tells me Iqbal Athas has already sent you a letter demanding £30,000 being compensation for an article you published earlier in CT which he claimed to have defamed him?
      Is it true?
      Did you use an article which defamed him as the basis for your article published recently in Colombo Telegraph?

      Is he suing you?
      Is he suing you on behalf of others?

      So he has already given up on MIG.
      Any chance of him being send on a diplomatic mission?

      You must understand he is 76 years old and wants to live a peaceful life.

      • 1
        0

        Is there someone trying a hostile bid to shut it off, on the name of Athas?
        I still having a problem of believing that Athas is going to court, after all he lived a life of breaking frauds and secrets? He doesn’t remember Lankawe was 174 out of 179 and he ran to US. Why did he return? He did anything illegal in US? If that is the case he should not have returned, but confess and accept the punishment. Sell the properties and pay the penalties. Declare bankruptcy. Restart all over again. Why would he return & get into the hands of Shark feeders. It is going to be a life walking on the thorn slippers.

    • 11
      1

      whose spine is stronger? is it sirisena’s or nandasena’s . One house maid from Middle east had the gut to call a spade a spade, but lanken media men are yet stand still.
      .
      Both Sirisena and Nandasena are uneducated bastards, that have broken records sofar. they have each proved it today.
      Sirisena let easter sunday worshippers be killed.
      :
      Nandasena aka Gotler, lack of his backborne, let the people getting infected more and more.. so that they could suck the blood of the people. Mahinda has raped Gotabaya in his younger days, so that he HAS proved his enability not having the done the due regarding saving the nation.

    • 10
      1

      The situation is worsening. B**Puthas are governing …. are u happy today ?

      Recovering rate is 20% in Sl how come ?

      Sri Lanka
      Coronavirus Cases:
      584
      Deaths:
      7
      Recovered:
      126 ( 21%)
      ——

      Nepal
      Coronavirus Cases:
      52
      Deaths:
      0
      Recovered:
      16 ( 30%)
      ———

      Vietnam
      Coronavirus Cases:
      270
      Deaths:
      0
      Recovered:
      225 (83%)


      Who have the BP Rajapaskhes further been fooling ? What have they been doing sofar ?

  • 4
    13

    Democracy in action……………………..

    • 11
      1

      SCP,
      Demo cracy inaction?
      Lord Buddha is in tears!
      White Van operators are in active mode.
      Dear Sinhala,
      Did you bring an American to destroy this nation and its civilisation? What do you mean by Sinhala civilisation? What do you mean by democracy? How come the soldiers get Corona kingdom when Military commanders and Commander in chief are thinking of Election Corona? Do you know they are buying bodybags from China cover the soldiers who are the victims of Election Corona?
      Did any one from the King Rajapakse family ever sacrificed for Srilanka or Buddhism when thousands of your children were died while their children were in US? Please think again and again. No one can protect Lord Buddha because he is the god and he knows how to protect him. Do you think Gota and weerawanse can protect Lord Buddha? You definitely know they ran away to US when this country was in deep sorrow.

    • 10
      1

      Democracy or Democrazy ?

      Now all is clear, that they have not tested enough because they thought more tests could only reveal a lot – and let those innocient but real heroes of the nation – Navy and other commados be in risks As a result over 100 soldiers known to be infected. Bps have got the best masks received from China, not allowing those soldiers getting them.

      I see nothing moves in favour the masses today even if BPs criticised former govt on and on.
      :
      Today if one would ask SIRISENA or NANDASENA ? The answer would be. NANDASENA has not taken sofar any good steps… and he wont.

      • 7
        1

        I think only soldiers sacrifice for saving the nation. Also from the civil war, they saved the nation and they also saved the nation in earthslips and floods. My heart is weeping for our heroic soldiers not for anyone else.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrMUOC3gIlM

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

        Today they sacrifice their life for saving the nation from corona. We are indebted to all TRIFORCES: All others incl. president, primier, ministers and that secretary of health ministry, Dr Jasinghe are jumping from one interview to the other, not having done the due yet today. Self glorifications are overflowing, but nothing much is achieved the least. Not even 25% are obviously recovered. These numbers in Korea, Germany and China are 80%, 66% and 90% respectively. Germans are silent, but do lot more for saving their nation and finding new medicine for the world.
        In the west, people have no such interviews of srilanken nature with heads of officers, or ministers, they have all along been struggling by implementing most appropriate steps by having done the tests more and more. Why have they failed to carry out at least 1200 tests a day as of now ? There is a saying… our people are masters to talk a lot, but their abilities are far poor than that of even poorer nations.

    • 9
      1

      S. C. Pasqual

      “Democracy in action……………………..”

      Where may I ask?

    • 12
      1

      leelagemalli

      Are you saying one cannot straighten Pasqual’s tail?
      I tend to agree with you.

      • 9
        1

        Native,
        .
        Yes, he is hallozinated as no other. I really dont know it is right to compare his that of a dog.. it is really an insult to the dogs..

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

      • 1
        0

        Nv-
        what on earth has happened to the kotama Uda fornicator with a Demala meenachi.?
        He’s missing in action.?
        Hopefully, he has fallen into a bucket of shit.?
        =
        Cheers, R. J.

    • 4
      1

      “Democracy in action “ We yet to have to comprehend what action is that.

      Here the order: The Bo Tree preys Buddha. Ayatollahs prey the Bo Tree. King prey the Ayatollahs. Opposition is now preying the King. Is that what you call as democracy in action?
      Recently Kandy Ayatollahs went to Presidential Secretariat and ordered King to strictly stay in constitution in no uncertain terms; that means no election before June2nd or no reinstatement of old parliament either. Ayatollahs know where should be kept the people elected MPs, in the Wildlife Sanctuary, Smart Patriotic, Liberal Democratic Socialistic Republic of Lankawe. Whitevan democracy is in action?
      The opposition also has pledged in no uncertain terms that King can do anything and they would support it or ratify it with a parliamentary voting. This is a democracy really kept in check by Opposition.

      The Speaker of the parliament, partner in earlier coup in 2018, Karu Jayasuriya, told in “toothless CC” meeting that he would take anything SC lays in front of him. What is he saying is he will not challenge King at the SC, but would agree to seek consultation from SC. (That is the practical interpretation of what he said). That is Atthamai Democracy!

      Noticeable part here is, the Supreme Court consultation was a recommendation for King by EC, but King out abruptly brushed it off.
      Court, EP and parliament have to go in a synchronized – harmonious –cooperative, hand in hand operation for the democracy to thrive.

      • 0
        1

        Mallung
        “King prey the Ayatollahs” etc.
        When did they all become cannibals?
        Go slow on the drugs, especially the laxative.

    • 3
      1

      Now the new deployment is this majority opposition is begging the EP to reinstate them. Ranil got resigned a majority government in November 2019, while it had almost a year to go. It is Ranil and Gang are the ones who have now signed the letter to King, pledging every loyalty to King and begging him to reconvene the parliament, which’s crisis started by their resignation of Ranil’s government to trap the King in a serious financial mess. In November, Ranil might have thought that the King was going to fall on his feet, but the Corona has turned the table on Ranil, so Ranil is falling on King’s feet. But the Slap Party’s actual government has no part in this begging. Old King, the Prime Minister, has said there is no need for any election now and he wants to take care of the virus infection. Beyond them two are in one government, one party, PM and EP is one parent’s children. Ranil, thinking that everybody is going to belief him, he is duping the world that he cares the King’s legal safety much more than the PM, King’s own brother. So PM is not asking to bring back the parliament to ratify EP’s action but Ranil is dying on that. The government’s PM doesn’t want the parliament. Opposition wants the parliament back to ratify the King’s violation of constitution, but not to oppose him, neither want to go to SC on his violations. If the opposition has signed off to accept anything EP wants to do, then why one want to waste money and time to reconvenes the parliament? Isn’t that a parliament meeting outside the Diyawanna Lake building?
      Is that Ranil’s Chauliyan Kudumi dancing for nothing or dancing for the national government?
      Is that the Lankawe’s dishonest democracy working through the back door?

  • 9
    0

    YOU CAN ALWAYS PUT UP A MAN WHO IS SLEEPING.BUY NEVER WILL BE ABLE TO PUT UP A MAN WHO IS PRETENDING TO BE SLEEPING.MR.PRADIDENT IS BEHAVING LIKE A DEAF AND BLIND MAN AS FAR AS THE CONSTITUTIONAL DEAD LOCK AND ITS INTERPRETATION.GOOD LUCK TO OPPOSITION PARTIES .

  • 5
    2

    Pure stubbornness by the Presiden. He does not value the life of voters and the election staff. A top human rights violator. I would blame the voters who elected him He never respects constitution of the country. A military man only dealt with guns and missiles and not humans. By his stubbornness, he is making things difficult for SLPP to get a two-third majority . It also helps all opposition to get united to save democracy. It is a blessing in disguise that the COVID19 crisis has crept into the country. The security forces are getting infected and also affect the medical staff. The time will come when Sri Lank will call for help from the Indian army. At that, the Defence secretary will be spitting his shit

  • 3
    0

    What are the Sri Lankan Dictator and his brother up to? Elections around the corner? Testing the waters to see if they would enjoy being in power without Parliament and Ministers? How far they can go with this abuse of powers?
    They up to no good (as usual).

  • 2
    0

    I agree with all, except for point number 5 . Please do not ask for something (to my knowledge) which we we have not had for decades. It is like demanding for dessert after being in total hunger for days.

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