Home » News

Rajapaksa’s constitution unacceptable: TNA

[Express Buzz, Tuesday, 11 May 2010 12:31 No Comment]

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) which is the single largest Tamil party in the Sri Lankan parliament with 14 members, has said that the Rajapaksa government’s constitutional proposals are unacceptable to the Tamils and other minorities.

“The proposals do not meet the needs of the minorities. They will put the minorities at a disadvantage,” TNA MP for Jaffna, Suresh Premachandran, told Express here on Tuesday.  

On Monday, two cabinent ministers cum spokespersons of the ruling Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Susil Premajayantha and Maithripala Sirisena, said that the government would do away with Proportional Representation System (PRS) and replace it with the First Past the Post System (FPPS) for the majority of the 225 seats in parliament.

They also  said that a 25 member upper chamber called the Senate would be give representation to the minorities and the provinces. The existance of the Senate would obviate the present requirement to get the prior approval of provincial councils if any act affected their  rights, the spokespersons said.

The ruling party also announced that the constitution would be changed to allow a person to serve as President beyond the present two term limit.

The proposals will be intoduced in parliament in the next two weeks and the constitution will be amended before President Mahinda Rajapaksa begins his second term on November 17.  

“The First Past the Post system will deny representation to the minorities. The winner (who will in most cases belong to the majority Sinhalese community) will take it all and the minorities and small parties will get no representation. The proportional representation system had room for smaller parties and the minorities,” Premachandran explained.

“As for the Senate giving representation to the provinces. This is not going to be enough. What the Tamils want is provincial autonomy as well as a share in the power at the Centre,” he said.

Premachandran further said that the government’s plan to delimit the electoral constituencies would adversely affect the Tamils and increase the representation of the majority Sinhalese.

[Full Coverage]

(For updates you can share with your friends, follow TNN on Facebook, Twitter and Google+)

Comments are closed.