With all irregularities exercised by the Rajapaksa regime of Colombo in the Eastern PC Elections, the emerging reality is that the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress gets its chance of showing political statesmanship in responding to ground realities in the Eastern Province, comment political observers watching the developments in the island. “It is a providence-given chance to the Tamil-speaking Muslims in the island to decide their political cause, whether they want to remain just a ‘minority’ or they want to be stakeholders in making a nation. At the same time, the question of conceding the status to the Muslims has also been extended to the TNA,” commented an observer in the East. However, by being carried away by the ‘simulated course of events’ the TNA is burdened with the responsibility of proving that in what way the PC system justifies the aspirations of Eezham Tamils and Muslims.
The ruling UPFA of Mahinda Rajapaksa has ‘won’ 12 seats in the East by polling 6,217 votes more than the Tamil National Alliance (TNA).
Wimal Weerawansa’s NFF has got one seat in the East.
The SLMC has secured 7 seats and the UNP has got 4 seats.
The TNA has secured 11 seats.
Mr. R. Sampanthan, the parliamentary group leader of the TNA, on Sunday confirmed that the TNA, together with the SLMC and the UNP, was fully prepared to form the Eastern Provincial Council with a clear majority than what the UPFA and the NFF have ‘won’ together.
“We Tamil National Alliance (TNA) (Ilankai Tamil Arasu Kadchi) stake the claim to form the Eastern Provincial Administration together with the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and the United National Party (UNP)” stated Mr.R.Sampanthan, Trincomalee district parliamentarian and Mr. Maavai Senathirajah, Jaffna district parliamentarian in a letter sent to the Sri Lankan colonial governor of the East, Rear Admiral (retd) Mohan Wijewickrema.
Mr. Sampanthan, at a press briefing held Sunday evening at his residence, released an official statement to media on EPC election. He also provided a copy of the letter sent to the military governor of the East:
Full text of the letter sent to the SL Governor of the Eastern Province by the General Secretary of the ITAK:
His Excellency the Governor,
Eastern Provincial Council,
Eastern Provincial Council Election 2012
We annex herewith for your kind information a copy of a statement made by us today in regard to the appointment of a Chief Minister.
You will appreciate that it is only a member of the Provincial Council from among the three parties: Ilankai Tamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK), Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and United National Party (UNP), all of whom opposed the UPFA at the Provincial Council election, will be best able to command the support of the majority of the members of the Eastern Provincial Council. These three parties together have 22 members.
The other 15 members of the UPFA and the NFF do not and cannot command the support of the majority of the members of the Provincial Council. Our nominee for the post of Chief Minister will be communicated to you shortly.
Mavai S. Senathirajah
ITAK OFFICIAL STATEMENT ON EPC ELECTIONS
The elections to the Eastern Provincial Council have concluded and the results have been announced.
The ruling UPFA violated all norms of democracy and good governance in a polls campaign that was marked by a well documented pattern of gross abuse of the state apparatus and resources. The UPFA utilized all governmental resources to influence the result. It also intimidated opposition parties’ candidates, bribing, unduly influencing voters and even spreading false propaganda to the effect that the TNA leader had announced the withdrawal of the ITAK from the contest.
Despite this UPFA campaign of terror the people of the Eastern province have reiterated their support and confidence in the TNA (ITAK) and we are pleased that we won two of the three districts securing the majority vote in both the Trincomalee and Batticaloa Districts and a substantial vote in the Ampara District.
The elections took place in an environment where a large number of Tamils yet continue to be displaced and a larger number of Tamils have fled and continue to flee the country due to the policies of the Rajapakse Administration. We sincerely thank the Tamil speaking people for the support and solidarity that they have demonstrated at this election, despite the ruling UPFA violence and intimidation. The ruling UPFA barely secured 6,200 votes more than TNA in the whole Eastern Province, largely on account of its abuse of state resources.
The political parties opposed to the UPFA in the EPC have won this election. The Ilankai Tamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK) has won 11 seats, the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) has won 7 seats and the United National Party (UNP) has won 4 seats. The parties that opposed the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA), the governing party at the Provincial Council election have a very clear majority in the new Council, just elected.
On behalf of those parties opposed to the governing UPFA in the Eastern Province, we TNA (ITAK) stake the claim to form the Eastern Provincial Administration together with the SLMC and UNP. Given the sordid track record of the government and its various activities to disturb the communal peace and harmony in the Eastern Province, the formation of a provincial government by the said three parties would be in the best interests of all the Peoples who live in the Eastern Province.
We wish to state that the member of the Provincial Council with the best ability to command the support of a majority of the members of the Provincial Council and thereby become Chief Minister should be chosen by the members of the Provincial Council of the said three parties. The choice of such a member will be communicated to the Governor shortly. We wish to point out to the Governor that the UPFA and the National Freedon Front (NFF) together do not and cannot command the support of the majority of the members of the Council.
R Sampanthan MP
Mavai Senathirajah MP
General Secretary, ITAK
9th September 2012