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News: VP Leader pooh-poohs Wimal’s bomb threat, danger of secession
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
National Freedom Front leader Wimal Weerawansa’s call to bomb Parliament, if it passes, the new constitution should not be taken seriously by others, JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake told the Constitutional Assembly yesterday. "Before responding to a threat by a person we should take look at who is making the threat. The person who threatens to bomb Parliament is not strong enough even to hurl a stone at a target with a catapult. He is not physically capable of anything. He has proved his strength by his conduct so far. He did not even have the courage to remain in remand prison. Before one
News: Life sentence for killing intelligence officer LTTE ‘hit’ during CFA
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
The Colombo High Court, yesterday, convicted Selvathurai Kimbakaran alias Marthan of the murder of Sunil Thabrew, the Intelligence Officer-in-charge of the Dehiwala Police, on July 23,2003. A life sentence was imposed on the convict, as penalty for the murder conviction. A five-year rigorous imprisonment term was also imposed for possessing illegal weapons, and a fine of Rs. 25,000 for possessing illegal bullets.
News: PM required to testify before Bond Commission
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
The Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) investigating the controversial Issuance of Bonds today said it requires the testimony of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe in order to "obtain a few clarifications and any other evidence which may be necessary". Issuing a statement at the commencement of the today's session, the Commission noted that it had perused the affidavit given to the Commission by the Prime Minister and that the Commission had certain clarifications to be made.
News: Why a new constitution? - Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
Following are excerpts of a statement issued by former Justice and Buddha Sasana Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe PC regarding the much talked about Interim Report of the Steering Committee presented to parliament for debate. • Interim Report submitted by the purported steering committee dated 21st September 2017 has no validity and authority • Whose need is to have a new constitution devolving the powers enabling the conversion of this country to a federal state • The Tamil population, forming the majority, in north and east amounts to 1,597,000 • It was a sole victory gained by the UNP’ers through their blood, tears and sweat
News: Constitutional Assembly unconstitutional, null and void ab initio
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
What could be comprehended by the Word Constitution? Constitution is recognised as a document made by law makers inserting a set of rules which are needed for the governance of the relevant territory, and it is considered supreme and unchallengeable. Inclusion of the following mandatory features could be seen in a constitution. 1. Provisions to guarantee/assure the rights of the citizens and the mechanisms to be operated for above purpose 2. Definition of the powers conferred on the Legislature, the Executive and the Judiciary and by whom such said powers are to be exercised
News: In order to remain as one “We are seeking maximum possible devolution” - Sumanthiran
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
Following are excerpts of the speech made by TNA MP M.A. Sumanthiran at the Parliament debate on the Interim report of the Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly. This is indeed the first time that a party representing the Tamil people of this country is agreeing with some proposals, although incomplete and still at the proposal stage. I am saying this referring to the position paper that we have provided, which is part of the Interim Report that has been placed before this Assembly for Debate during these three days. We have stated our positions very clearly and I want to elaborate on some of them now.
News: Sampanthan calls on all to decry separatism
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
Tamil National Alliance Leader R. Sampanthan said, that this country should never be divided and called on the people not to support anyone promoting separatism. Opening the Constitutional Assembly debate on the Steering Committee Interim Report for the third day yesterday (1), the Leader of the Opposition said, there is a clear need for a new Constitution to assure unity in diversity in the country.
News: Sampanthan points out MR’s contradictory positions on devolution
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
There was a pressing need for a new Constitution to ensure unity in diversity in the country, Leader of the Opposition R Sampanthan said yesterday. Opening the Constitutional Assembly debate on the Interim Report for the third day, the Opposition Leader called on people not to support anyone promoting separatism. "This country should never be divided," he said. The TNA Leader said the inability of leaders to stand by what they had accepted and keep their commitments after they ceased to hold power had been a major setback.
News: Things worse for SL if Nat'l question ignored-Leader of the Opposition
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
Things will get worse for Sri Lanka especially in the international arena if the country fails to address the National question, Leader of Opposition R Sampnanthan told the Constitutional Assembly yesterday. "Sri Lanka knows very well that all the problems it has faced in the international arena, particularly since 2012, is because of its failure to manfully address the National question. Things can only get worse; they cannot get any better if the same attitude remains," Sampanthan said.
Photos: Three Indian naval ships arrive at the port of Colombo
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
Photos: Who is really behind the New Constitution-making process in Sri Lanka?
Posted Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
News: NGOs and Federalism
Posted Date: 01/11/2017 (Wednesday)
Prof. Yash Ghai, a Harvard Scholar and Prof. Emeritus of the Nairobi University, was a Kenyan who had over the years been regarded as an international expert in constitutional making. It was a great honour for the University of Nairobi to have educated and nurtured such a magnificent scholar. He has been invited by many developing countries to formulate and assist in the drafting of their own Constitutions. Most modern scholars feel that the Kenyan Constitution is one of the clearest examples of a near perfect Democratic Constitution. Prof. Ghai was responsible for almost its entire draft. He was
News: Highlight people's fundamental and social rights in new constitution: JVP
Posted Date: 01/11/2017 (Wednesday)
JVP MP Vijitha Herath said today clauses to uphold the fundamental and social rights of the people should be included in the new Constitution before talking about issues of power devolution, federalism and giving more powers to provincial councils. He said this during the Constitutional Assembly debate on the new Constitution and pointed out that the people's social rights including the right to education, health, drinking water and housing
News: Ploys by the Opposition to scuttle Govt. moves for new Constitution
Posted Date: 01/11/2017 (Wednesday)
Several people have come forward to defend National Freedom Front (NFF) leader Wimal Weerawansa who threatened to bomb the Parliament if a new Constitution was adopted on the basis of the interim report submitted by the Constitutional Assembly’s Steering Committee and tabled in Parliament on September 21 by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. Keheliya Rambukwella a former media minister in the Mahinda Rajapaksa regime and joint opposition front-liner in the Central Province, Dilum Amunugama had echoed what Weerawansa
News: Constitutional Reforms Debate Day Two Don’t miss the ‘Last Bus’ to lasting solution
Posted Date: 01/11/2017 (Wednesday)
Government leaders yesterday warned the country that this was the 'last chance' the country had to bring about a lasting solution to the ethnic or national problem by bringing in a new Constitution. "For the first time, the biggest representation of Tamil people, the TNA, has actively participated in the process of constitutional reforms and this chance will never ever come to us. Already, it took decades to reach this juncture," said the majority of the Cabinet Ministers and other ranks
Photos: Will not sign new Constitution if harmful to nation -Speaker
Posted Date: 01/11/2017 (Wednesday)
Photos: President announces three major steps regarding constitutional reforms
Posted Date: 01/11/2017 (Wednesday)
News: No need to abolish the Presidential system?
Posted Date: 31/10/2017 (Tuesday)
To argue against the prevailing popular ‘fashion’ is no easy task, but do hope I would be listened to for the simple reason that, sometimes, the solution could be more of a problem than the original problem itself. Though the majority of the ordinary citizens are concerned about mundane issues like the cost of living as pointed out in a number of recent Island editorials, the majority of intellectuals clamour for the abolition of the executive presidency and are ready to jump to the illogical conclusion that all our current ills are due to the delay in achieving this task.
News: Day 1: One-third of Constitutional Assembly missing
Posted Date: 31/10/2017 (Tuesday)
At least 75 members of the Constitutional Assembly (CA) tasked with formulating a draft Constitution were absent during the first session on Monday. The CA is having a three-day debate on the interim report presented by its Steering Committee. Parliament meets as the Constitutional Assembly on all three days. Sources said the attendance had been extremely low in spite of the best efforts made by political party leaderships to ensure their members’ participation.
News: How China’s rivalry with India is rippling across South Asia
Posted Date: 31/10/2017 (Tuesday)
By seeking to establish their dominance over South Asia, India and China are constraining the economic prospects of smaller neighbours. Their contest for the upper hand is also exacting a human toll on Muslim minorities in Myanmar and Hindus in Sri Lanka. More than 600,000 ethnic Rohingya have poured into Bangladesh since August. Beijing and New Delhi dismiss their persecution as part of Myanmar’s internal affairs, given that both wish to be in the good books of the strategically important, resource-rich nation.

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