Saturday, 22 July 2017

Joint Opposition –What game are you playing ?

The people have placed their trust in the Joint Opposition lead by Dinesh Goonewardhane .  There is a cry coming out of the heart of the people that the yahapalanaya hybrid government should not be allowed to write a new constitution for Sri Lanka. Does the Joint Opposition hear that cry or are they not giving both their ears to that cry allowing their other ears to listen to other calls ?

The leader of the Federation of National Organisations Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekara, has accused  Dinesh Goonewardene for writing secret letters to the Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe with regard to problems that had arisen in the Constitution making  process.  If it is true  Dinesh Gunawardane has to make it clear why he is remaining in the Constitutional Assembly, along with a part of JO when there are problems known to him in the Constitution making process.

We know that  even his father late Philip Gunewardena the “father of Socialism in Sri Lanka” during the end of his carrier preferred to remain in political power accepting in 1965 the Ministry of Industries and Fisheries in the National Government of Dudley Senanayake. We certainly do not believe  that Dinesh Gunawardene will follow suit, but people begin to question the reason why the rest of the JO under Dinesh Gunawardena continues to remain in the CA while  Wimal Weerawansa true to his principles withdrew his party’s participation in the CA.

It was a mistake of the JO from the very beginning to have participated in the Committees stage of the process leading to the writing  of a New Constitution. That is in addition to the mistake the JO made in the 1st instance in voting for the 19th Amendment. The 19 Amendment had specified  a period within which the Parliament cannot be dissolved. It is contrary to  democratic procedure as one has to put up with a government for its full term even if it is not productive, offensive to democracy and abuses the power of the government to destroy the country’s historical and cultural values as now it is being done by the so called Yayapalanaya  hybrid government in place.

It was perfectly in order that a New Constitution was promulgated  in 1972 to  declare Sri Lanka a Republic. Prior to that Sri Lanka had dominion status and had constitutions written by the Colonial Government. After that there was no reason to write new constitutions as the first Republican Constitution could have been Amended to adopt it to new political situations.

However , when J.R.Jayawardhane formed a government of UNP in 1977, he prepared a new constitution which was promulgated in 1978. However,  the 1978 Constitution with executive powers given to the President served its purpose in the process of the elimination of terrorism in Sri Lanka. That constitution is therefore worth keeping as the permanent Constitution of Sri Lanka allowing adjustment to meet any new unforeseen situation by passing Amendments.

Now a hybrid government with problems between the members of its constituent parties has decided to write a new Constitution.  There is no necessity to write a New Constitution to  a country each time a new government is formed by a different political party or a combined hybrid Government of several parties as in the case of the Present Government of the President Sirisena.

Each time a new Political party takes the reins of government the country remains the same it does not become any different from what it had been before,  therefore the new political party that is to form a new government should go on with the same old Constitution changing it if necessary by passing Amendments.

In Sri Lanka today after the formation of a hybrid government of several political parties, the political and social situations have drastically changed as the country is no more the country it was with a united people despite a majority community, and other minority communities.

The new government calling itself a yahapalanaya trying to introduce  “power sharing” in a so called reconciliation process, when in fact there is no such power sharing necessary as all the communities- the majority and the minorities, enjoy  the same rights and priviledges, has placed Sri Lanka in a situation worse than it had been under terrorism.  The Majority Community in Sri Lanka- Sinhala enjoys no other rights and priviledges than those enjoyed by the minority Communities.. 

This myth of power sharing has been created  only by the political leaders of the Minority Communities. The Hybrid government of President Sirisena, unable to explain this truth to the minorities with whom they have come into agreements  of sharing political power in return for their votes,  have given in to the “demands” of the Minority Communities to please the foreign countries, which stand with the Minorities to make the Majority weak and give into the “absurdities” of the Minorities.

The writing of a  new Constitution is another such absurdity demanded by the Minorities , insisted by foreign countries and the United Nations Organisation with an eye to make the Constitution  Federal, so that it would help the Minorities later  to set up their own Communal Regions.
Under such a situation of a government weakened by foreign pressure on one hand ,  and  the fear on the other hand of loosing the minority votes at elections , allowing  this Ranil Sirisena hybrid Government to write a New Constitution would be a “political suicide”. It will cause  irreparable damage to Sri Lanka which would by such a move loose its unitary status, its Communal unity, and menace its historical, cultural and religious values.

Therefore the Joint Opposition should take into consideration the inherent dangers of  writing a new Constitution by Sirisena-Ranil hybrid government at this decisive time of Sri Lanka’s history. The JO, should  therefore withdraw forthwith from all their responsibilities in this conspiracy to write  a New Government under pressure by foreign Governments and the UN,  and the threat of the minority Communities denying their votes  at future elections to  Sirisena –Ranil Combination.

The Joint Opposition to win back the people’s confidence and their support should act as one, and immediately withdraw from  the Constitutional Assembly. If not it should state its  reason for not leaving the Constitutional Assembly.

The interfering into Sri Lanka’s internal affairs by the UN by sending its representatives  Jeffrey Feltman  and Ben Emerson are questionable and goes beyond the UN’s role as specified in the UN Charter.

It is appreciated that the JO leader Dinesh Gunawardena raised objection to UN interference in Sri Lanka Constitution making process. Such protests are irrelevant  as long as the  Joint Opposition has not officially  withdrawn from the Constitutional Assembly and ceased all activities with regard to the Constitution making process.

If the Government calls for a referendum of the people the JO should be prepared to warn the people of the dangers in allowing the yahapalanaya government to write a new Constitution, and request the people  to vote against the writing a New Constitution at any referendum.

The Jaffna District MP Devananda’s statement that the writing of a new constitution is not necessary if the whole of the 13Amendment is implemented  cannot be accepted, as the 13Amendment is the source of all the problems we have with the Tamils. The 13 Amendment should be withdrawn from the 1978 Constitution, and a new system of provincial governments should be set up to reflect the power of the people coming from the village level to the top.

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