23 October, 2020

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Young Professionals’ Proposals On Constitutional Amendments Submitted To PSC

A group of young professionals have made submissions to the latest Parliamentary Select Committee appointed in July to go into constitutional changes required to resolve the national question, with the primary objective of upholding democracy at all levels of governance processes in the country. The young professionals group includes Parliamentarian Vasantha Senanayake, Waruna Padmasiri, Supipi Jayawardena, Mohamed Hisham, Prabhu Deepan and Selyna Peiris.

Senanayake MP

The “Senanayake Proposals”, as its been called, have already been shared with all leaders of political parties representing the Parliament of Sri Lanka, all the first-time MPs in Parliament and the President. The group is seeking support from these stakeholders as well as civil society to consider this as a base document for discussions at the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC). The group strongly believes that the proposals represent the needs of moderate Sri Lankans, including young people of all ethnic groups, rural or metropolitan.

Some interesting features of these proposals include a broad, inclusive preamble followed by recommendations for additions to the Fundamental Rights enshrined in the constitution including Right to Life along with amendments to Article 12(2) and Article 13. They have also proposed changes to Fundamental Duties section with the amendment to reflect the need to have provisions for monitoring the effective implementation of state policies at all levels of government with any inconsistencies with the provisions of the articles being subjected to the review of the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka.

The proposals also call for removal of the power of the President to dissolve Parliament before the end of its term while introducing a 2 tier legislation assembly with the Parliament and a Senate. The senate will be headed by a Vice President who will be appointed by the President for the proposed 5 year term as President. While the proposals call for limiting any candidate from contesting for the office of President for more than 3 years, introduces a fixed month (January) for Presidential elections followed by assumption on duties on the 04th of February.

Among other interesting aspects of the proposals, the provisions for a fixed number (25) of ministerial portfolios with 21 pre-defined ministries, the introduction of the concept that Cabinet ministers are appointed from outside the parliament with the parliament being given oversight functions for all activities including appointment of high posts, parliament consisting 225 members appointed through 3 different mechanisms to ensure a broader representation and the complete overhaul proposed for the current provincial council system with more constituent responsibility for provincial councilors are novel and noteworthy.

The proposals also consist of a broad and a novel set of recommendations on Judiciary, Decentralization of Powers and Devolution of state functions with a heavy emphasis on accountability and right to information for the public.

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    Right to Life is Catholic church’s movement to ban abortions.

    Decentralization of powers and power devolution means there is no leader for Sri Lanka. Every one is a leader. Who will take the decisions at a crucial moment like when LTTE wanted a separate country ?

    Why everybody needs power ?

    Young professionals are MPs. How did they become professionals ? Is it because they are MPs ?

    It looks like the same old gang. Senanayakes and Jayawardenes.

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      This proposal was very interesting. It talks about Taking the ‘Police Powers’ out of the Chief Minister of the Province, and devolving it to the independent Police Commission of the Province.

      This is probably the most sensible suggestion thus far about Police Powers. This will no doubt satisfy the security concerns of the defense secretary.

      Technically not even the president can interfere with the Police. But under 13th A the Police must answer directly to a politician Chief Minister.

      Where is the independence in that?

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        Because the long history of SL has shown that even so-called independent bodies with their Sinhala representation would always side the Sinhala majority. The 17A has been discarded to the dustbin. The Sinhala regime used the hoodlum Sarath N Silva, who later admitted of his duplicity, the then Supreme Court head to demerger the North and East. What about the paramilitaries who cause havoc and run amok in these provinces and the regime encourages them to commit crimes? The answer to all these is for the Northern Province to have its land and police powers.

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        It seems that Srilanka is not short of so called constitutional experts.

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      Sounds very good and very exciting and indeed it is time for a NEW and CLEAN YOUNGER GENERATION (not CORRUPT Rajapakse family and cronies’ children) to lead the country. The current political leadership has too much BAD BLOOD ON ITS HANDS and is the generation that ruined Lanka.
      A limited number of Cabinet members who have TECHNICAL EXPERTISE in the SUBJECT who are NOT from the Parliament is an excellent idea.
      The parliament of corrupt morons and uneducated clowns has enormous perks and additionally ministries to make more money.
      A Medical professional needs to be the MINISTER OF HEALTH. Likewise Education. Today citizens – patients and students are suffering due to the politicization and corruption in these 2 sectors.
      The CORRUPT Minister of Health, Maithreepala Sirisena, whose brother has stolen/ grabbed STATE massive lands and built his Hotel SUDU ARaliya which should be boycotted in Polonnaurwa), has failed to pass the National Drugs Bill has been blaming a single official who retired form the ministry for a lost draft of the bill – this is a JOKE in an era of computers and multiple copies.. Where did this moron come from and does he think that the people of Lanka are morons?
      The fact is that there is NO POLITICAL WILL TO PASS the NATIONAL DRUGS BILL because of massive corruption and patients and ill persons are the victims of this.

      Meanwhile the has tried to distract people from his utter failure to the people of Lanka, by making all sort of statements about the case to display pictures against smoking on cigarette pack.. This is to DISTRACT people from the fact that he is in the lap of the big Parmaceutical COmpanies and making millions of bucks.

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        Dinuk
        Good comment.
        You must guide these people- I was told that at least one or two in this group had said that they don’t know what happened before they were born – they can’t do systemic progress/change without knowing post-independence history fully.

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        Dinuk, You seem to have jumped the gun. Where are the proposals in detail? is this a carbon copy of what RW presented.On the face value of it, they seem to have copied the US constitution, without the critical areas, the right of the voter to recall their representative, after a referendum.No politician like to be thrown out Re compare the rule to impeach and remove a Chief justice vs similar action on the President ( JRJ’s constitution).

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      Many good ideas here and congratulations to the young professionals who have done their homework.
      These proposals are far better than the various constitutional drafts we have seen from the unimaginative lawyers and s0-called experts and aim at the matter of CORRUPTION and malaise in POLITICAL CULTURE.
      4 points though:
      1) Presidential terms limits as in the US should be for 2 terms ONLY with, each term being ONLY 4 year year.
      Thus it is for a maximum of 8 years that an individual can be head of state given the excessive power of the presidency in Lanka and the need for checks and balances.
      Also, need prohibition on family members of the president holding Govt. posts (other than those elected to).
      2) To democratize political parties and stem the rot in political culture there should be mandatory term limits for ALL POLITICAL PARTY LEADERS – as for the presidency. Currently, geriatric dictators lead all the parties – Ranil, Sampanthan, Somawansa, Vasu, DEW, TIssa – the DEAD LEFTISTS.
      3) 33 percent RESERVATION FOR WOMEN in local and national governance and parliament is a MUST.
      4) the Vice president should NOT be appointed solely by the Pesident and should be from the MINORITY communities – Tamil or Muslim.

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      Good stuff keep it coming!
      Hope this group becomes a strong force for reform of the awful political culture with political parties which are all mini dictatorships.. Otherwise youth will mobilize the Lanka Spring..
      Don’t let yourself be coopted by the brain dead corrupt clown Namal’s youth clubs for car races!

      Also, Hope the young professionals proposals include the ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL –
      Bill on the Prevention of Incitement to Racial and Ethnic Hatred and Hate speech to preserve Multiculturalism and Peace.

      Britain has such a bill to protect its minorities (Black and Asian migrnats) from white National Front White Neo Nazi groups, and Sri Lanka definitely needs such abill to hold groups like Balu Sena and Ravana Balu Sena accountable for attacking minorities, spreading hatred and DISTURBING THE PEACE.

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      Young Professional – it may be a good idea to ask Sanga – Kumar Sangakkara – to be your Patron and spread these ideas – start an advertizing campaign for general voter education of Sinhalaya modayas!

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      Ignorance is bliss. Decentralisation and power devolution do not mean “there in no leader for Sri Lanka” nor “everyone is a leader”. It means the president’s or parliament power will be shared with ther local bodies so that Colombo will become less heavily loaded and crowded with building, transports, expensive houses or misuse of power. What happens now is ONE man/woman show, he/she can bring in his/her family members or friends without considering merits.

      In US, most of Europe except UK (where some powers is distributed to Scottish parliament, Welsh Assembly and Northern Ireland Assembly but London retain most powers) de-centralised system works very well.

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      These young Parliamentarians were invited by the ICG , a human rights organisation to the UK . They were hosted in the SL HC by the ICG . ICG no doubt wanted their agenda to be carried out by these impressionable young Parliamentarians .Why do they call them selves Professionals ? They must have been grilled by the ICG for carrying out their agenda . It certainly has paid rich dividens for having funded their Air tickets , and entertaining them .

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      Right to life is a good slogan for Bodu Bala Sena, who wants Sinhala men to sleep with more than one woman and to produce a large number of offsprings. This right to life crap is to limit women’s right to decide about their own body.

      How ever, the idea of having a professional Cabinet outside from the parliament and assigning the parliament a greater oversight role is a good one. But it wouldn’t work unless parliamentary oversight committees sessions are public hearings open to media coverage.

      One thing that lack with all these proposals for constitutional amendments is to introduce independent means by which people can debate the governments performance between the elections. In most european countries this is the role of state funded independent broadcasting system.

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    I think they just came out of the high school and became MPs. Now, they are learning how to screw up Sri Lanka as their grand parents did.

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      They have just come out of the High School but you need to re-start at the elementary level!

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    So they trust the PSC! :)

    Rajafucksa cronies.

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    Young Professional WHATS ? Bum-suckers, Sycophants or just IDIOTS !

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    Yes. Wow did they become professionals?
    A set of Rajafucksa cronies authestred
    by Namal

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      There is an MP, lawyers, an academic a business entrepreneur and a social entrepreneur. Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim and a burgher. but who made them professionals?

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    Yes. How did they become professionals?
    A set of Rajafucksa cronies authestred
    by Namal

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    Untill Sri Lanka is Budhism and Sinhala, this land will never be a Powerful unless failed state. Embrace GOD and Belive in Creator…

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    What about equal status for all religions and languages, no special status in the constitution to any religion or languages.

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    Instead of asking RIGHT TO LIFE STOP PROVIDING ALL THE ENVIRONMENT FOR THE YOUNGER GENERATION TO ENGAGE IN PREMARITAL SEX.

    right now Clubs, many different kinds of beach parties and every thing else promote pre-marietal sex.

    Right to life only screw up the country with many children unwanted by the mothers.

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      Jim softy ,

      Well said my friend…………..it is the mistake of you religious leaders and parents.

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