President Maithripala Sirisena is now standing on the side of murderers and assassins, charged JVP Leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake in a blistering speech in Parliament on Friday.
Dissanayake charged that President Sirisena’s first act as Law and Order Minister was to attempt the transfer of IP Nishantha Silva out of the CID where he was working on high profile cases, including the Lasantha Wickrematunge’s assassination, the Keith Noyahr abduction and assault, the Upali Tennakoon assault and other major cases. Through the years the CID had withstood political interference in order to unearth evidence into the Thajudeen killing and other cases, he said.
“President Sirisena who was elected in 2015 to solve these crimes, is now standing on the side of the murderers,” Dissanayake charged. Soon after winning the presidency in 2015, Sirisena had claimed he had hidden in a coconut estate out of fear for his life in case his opponent Mahinda Rajapaksa won the polls the JVP leader said. He said he worried that he and his family would be killed. Who was he alluding would be the assassin? Mahinda Rajapaksa of course – those are his words not ours” he added.
“So teach us the formula – how does this alliance between the would-be assassin and his would-be victim work now?” Dissanayake charged.
Explaining why Mahinda Rajapaksa took over the premiership at this stage, when there was a clear path for him to do so legitimately at an election, the JVP Leader took pains to explain that the Rajapaksa family could not afford to wait because a stream of cases against the immediate family were lining up. “02 cases of Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s were coming up. Two cases of Namal’s were coming up. Wimal Weerawansa’s case and his wife’s case was coming up, Lalith Weeratunge’s appeal was coming up, Gamini Senarath’s case was coming up – all this before February,” Dissanayake explained.
“Mahinda Rajapaksa took this step forward, against all good reason in order to save his acolytes from legal action,” he charged.
By summoning cabinet even after there was no cabinet after the no confidence votes were passed in Parliament, President Sirisena and the UPFA ‘ministers’ were like Ali Baba and his 40 thieves, charged Dissanayake. “No state officials should operationalise decisions made by the fake cabinet,” he charged.
President Sirisena was continuing to summon cabinet even though under the provisions of the constitution Cabinet stands dissolved after two No confidence votes were passed in Parliament – “this is like Ali Baba and the 40 thieves meeting” said JVP Leader Dissanayake.
President Sirisena, who had instigated a dirty and uncivilised coup, was now seeking to set boundaries on the struggle to defeat the coup, the JVP Leader accused.
“Who is he to tell this Parliament how to pass a No Confidence Motion? After bringing a fake Government into power under the cover of dusk? He is the most uncivilised politician in this country today. He no longer has moral authority to speak about civility,” Dissanayake charged.
If the UPFA had a problem with standing orders being suspended to pass the No Confidence motion on November 14, all they had to do was defeat the motion to suspend the SOs, he said.
Praising the Speaker for his bold decision to take votes and declare his rulings on November 14, 15 and 16th, the JVP Leader said only the Speaker had to the right to rule on votes taken in the House. Sirisena did not have that power, he said. “The Legislature is not under the authority of the President, Dissanayake said.
“If he likes, he can go to Polonnaruwa and grow a paddy field according to his whims. He can decide which crops to grow. Whether to use organic or chemical fertilizer – he cannot rule this country as he pleases with no regard to law,” he charged.
Anyone with brains the size of an ant’s head can understand that the core of the 19th Amendment was to ensure that the mandate of Parliament could not be subsumed by the Presidency, Dissanayake said.
The President cannot rule the country according to his mad whims, there are boundaries set upon his powers by the constitution and he is bound to act within those confines, the JVP Leader charged.
After Sirisena dissolved Parliament in violation of the constitution the highest court of the land was moved for the first time to unravel an entanglement between the executive and the legislature, by bringing the third branch of the into the picture – the judiciary.
The Supreme Court issued a historic interim order suspending the gazette, and that is the only reason Parliament was able to reconvene, he said. “The judiciary defeated the first step of the coup – we pledge that Parliament will defeat the rest,” Dissanayake vowed.
Addressing President Sirisena directly, Dissanayake said the JVP was not going to fall prey to his tricks of ‘discussions’ about the political crisis. “The only discussion you need to have is with your conscience – we have nothing to talk to you about,” he told the President during a 19 minute speech.
The JVP Leader also threatened the President that he was liable for impeachment by the Legislature and that there were two conditions that could be fulfilled to start that process. “One is the deliberate violation of the constitution. The other is mental infirmity,” Dissanayake charged, adding “let us contemplate our future actions in this House in that regard.
The JVP Leader also took aim at the UNP, saying it was because of the party’s failures in Government that this coup had come about. Accusing former Law and Order Minister Sagala Ratnayake of interfering in cases pertaining to the former regime, Dissanayake said the UNP had failed to bring perpetrators of gross corruption to book during their time in office, because they were too busy doing “deals”.
The Cabinet made a decision that former first lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa would not be asked to report to the FCID, but the FCID would be asked to go to her where ever she was, the JVP Leader accused. “At the cabinet the discussion was “she is the former first lady of this country,” he said. Mangala Samaraweera interjected at this point to explain that it was President Sirisena who made this argument.
“Well all of you were in that marriage together all this time,” Dissanayake retorted.
He also accused the UNP of harbouring Gamini Senarath the Rajapaksa’s former Chief of Staff, and keeping investigators at bay. The UNP had failed to be transparent in their dealings in Government, and were paying the price for that and could not be considered the true custodians of democracy, he charged.