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  • EU delegation calls on Sampanthan

    EU delegation calls on Sampanthan

    A special delegation of the European Union called on Tamil National Alliance Leader Parliamentarian R.Sampanthan and held discussion. Sampanthan briefed them of the problems of the Tamils and the need to enact a new constitution for Tamils to live as equals in the island.
  • Alice Wells at St.Anthony’s shrine in Kochchikade

    Alice Wells at St.Anthony’s shrine in Kochchikade

    The US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Alice Wells visited the St. Anthony's Shrine in Kochchikade, one of the churches bombed by Muslim extremists on April 21, and laid a wreath in remembrance of the victims.
  • Rajitha hands over 20 endoscopy machines to hospitals

    Rajitha hands over 20 endoscopy machines to hospitals

    Health Minister Dr.Rajitha Senaratne handed over 20 endoscopy machines to authorities to be distributed to various hospitals in the island at a ceremony held recently. Health Services Director Dr.Anil Jayasinghe and Health Ministry Secretary Wasantha Perera were also present.
  • Ranil graces opening of Green Valley Apartment Complex in Kaduwela

    Ranil graces opening of Green Valley Apartment Complex in Kaduwela

    Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe graced the ceremony held to mark the opening of the Green Valley apartment complex in Ranala Kaduwala on Sunday as its Chief Guest.
  • Our next president will be one selected democratically by the UNP: Mangala

    Our next president will be one selected democratically by the UNP: Mangala

    Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera has observed that the next president of Sri Lanka will be the person democratically selected by the United National Party and its allies to stand on a platform of democracy, safeguarding the judiciary, public service and other independent institutions and putting ordinary citizens before any family.
  • Rajapaksa’s with new party, new slogans are the same - a Kobeyya will never be an eagle: Ranil

    Rajapaksa’s with new party, new slogans are the same - a Kobeyya will never be an eagle: Ranil

    Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Sunday has charged that even though the Rajapaksa family was attempting to return to power with a new party, new candidate, and new slogans, voters must understand that “a kobeyya (dove), whether it is fried or cooked in milk, is still a kobeyya, and will never be a rajaaliya (eagle).”
  • I will make Sri Lanka a peaceful, secure, safe country: Gotabaya in his maiden address

    I will make Sri Lanka a peaceful, secure, safe country: Gotabaya in his maiden address

    Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna Presidential candidate has observed that if entrusted with the stewardship of this country by the people, his first task would be to ensure complete safety and security throughout the nation. He had complete confidence that we would once again be able to make Sri Lanka one of the most peaceful, secure, and safe countries in the world. He would accept responsibility for people’s safety, and the safety of children and loved ones.
  • Gotabaya is SLPP’s Presidential candidate: Mahinda announces

    Gotabaya is SLPP’s Presidential candidate: Mahinda announces

    Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna Leader Mahinda Rajapakse has announced that former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa would be the Presidential candidate of the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna.
  • US Assistant Secretary Alice Wells calls on Mahinda

    US Assistant Secretary Alice Wells calls on Mahinda

    United States Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Alice Wells called on Opposition Leader Mahinda Rajapaksa at his official residence in Wijerama on Sunday morning, August 11 and held discussions. She is currently on a regional tour visiting India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
  • SLPP leadership handed to Mahinda Rajapaksa

    SLPP leadership handed to Mahinda Rajapaksa

    The Leadership of the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) has been handed to the Opposition Mahinda Rajapaksa at its National Convention held at the Sugathathasa Indoor Stadium today, Sunday, August 11.
  • Govt plans to sign agreements violating the constitution: Dinesh charges

    Govt plans to sign agreements violating the constitution: Dinesh charges

    Joint Opposition Parliamentarian MEP Leader Dinesh Gunawardena has charged that the government was entering into international agreements detrimental to the country and in violation of the constitution.
  • Navin Dissanayake at Naga Vihara

    Navin Dissanayake at Naga Vihara

    Plantation Minister Navin Eranjan Dissanayake visited Yarl Naga Vihara on Saturday, August 10 during his visit to Jaffna.
 

House ought to pass new constitution, seek people’s approval at referendum: Sampanthan responds to Mahinda

Sampanthan R 700 02

Tamil National Alliance Leader R.Sampanthan has stated that the new constitution must be passed in Parliament and taken before the people at a referendum and the people would decide whether it should become the supreme law of the country or not, and one does not need a general election for that.

He made this observation addressing the Constitutional Assembly responding to Opposition Leader Mahinda Rajapaksa’s call to hold a general election to decide on the new constitution.

During his passionate appeal for a new constitution to all parties, Sampanthan said:

“Framing of a Constitution is a sacred duty. A resolution was passed in parliament converting parliament into a constitutional assembly to enable a constitution to be framed, a steering and they had deliberated and all parties had participated in the deliberations before the steering committee and the sub-committees.

The objections that have been raised today were never raised before any one of those committees and now we have come to a stage where after almost three years of deliberations certain reports have been submitted to the house to decide what further needs to be done.

I feel that it should be approached with a certain amount of sanctity and seriousness and not flippantly. Muslims, Burgher or any community, all Sri Lankans have a right of their motherland. All are equal citizens of this country. We should be united in our approach.

We have failed to protect unity in diversity and to create a common Sri Lankan identity. It is our intention to unite people through this Constitution.
Some call themselves patriots. I think that they are pseudo-patriots. They work for votes and to secure a majority. There had been a nexus between pseudo-patriotism and corruption. The country has become poor thanks to their conduct. They say they work for the people but they use racism as a tool to mobilise people. I am sorry to observe that some of the submissions made this morning by the opposition have been flippant, lacking in seriousness lacking in sanctity in keeping with the fact that we are endeavouring to promulgate a new constitution for the country which has been long called for.

Sri Lanka is a multi-ethnic, multi-lingual multi-religious and multi-cultural pluralistic society. Different races and religions live in this country and have lived for centuries and generations. We need to keep them united and all the people living in the country, irrespective of who they are, be it Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslims or Burghers, must have a sense of belonging to this country and that this country belongs to them and that they are one people. There must be unity in diversity. That is the objective in framing this constitution, to unite the people and bring them together, which we have not been able to do until now. We have not been able to constitute a Sri Lankan nation. For the reason that we have been divided, we have been dis-united.

This constitution is intended to unite the people, to bring them together and enable them to feel that they all belong to one country and that the country belongs to them. There were certain other advantages, apart from unifying and bringing the people together, which could be achieved under the new constitution through power sharing arrangements.

At the regional and provincial level, governance is not visible. Governance has to be more visible because then people can see what is happening. As a result of all power being kept in Colombo there is a great deal of waste and corruption, all of which can be eliminated if power is exercised at the regional and provincial level.
There are people in this country who think they are patriotic, but I don’t think they are patriots. They are pseudo patriots who arouse chauvinism amongst the majority people to continue to be in power. It is my view that there is a symbiotic relationship between pseudo patriotism and corruption. People who have been downright corrupt when they were in power and have swindled this country. This country has been impoverished by their actions and how can such persons be patriots? How can such persons be those who advocate something really good for the country? To them, patriotism is a shield for corruption,"

 

 

 

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