By Ashwin Hemmathagama
Parliamentarian Sajith Premadasa yesterday appealed to President Maithripala Sirisena to end the Constitutional standoff by accepting MP Ranil Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister, and allowing the country to return to normal without further delay.
Moving the Vote of Confidence yesterday in Parliament, to prove MP Wickremesinghe commands the confidence of Parliament to function as the Prime Minister, MP Premadasa said: “President, please stop wasting time. The time is right to change your decision and to put things in correct order. Look no further, wait no more, but please reappoint Ranil Wickremesinghe. He commands the majority in this Parliament.”
“Now that we have shown over 2/3 majority in Parliament, better safeguard what is left of their self-respect. Should have accepted the fact that they don’t have the majority and allow us to take over the Government,” he added.
Bringing the House’s attention on the crux of the matter, which led to the constitutional crisis, MP Premadasa said: “This is the darkest era of our democratic history we all witness now. The Constitution was violated a few times since 26 October, bringing the entire country to a grinding halt. The issue started with the unconstitutional removal of the Prime Minister and appointment of a new Prime Minister, and the Cabinet that does not command at least 80 seats in the Parliament. Not only that, the Parliament was also dissolved, and also offered different attractions to win the hearts of the lawmakers and to switch sides. We had to take democratic moves to bring in No-Confidence Motions, Motions to cut funds to the Office of the Prime Minister and the Ministers.”
According to MP Premadasa, the rule of law was ignored, and the Constitution was violated to make room for illegal appointments. “Having wilfully violated the rule of law and Constitution, they have betrayed the voters. Even the kindergarten children knew we had the majority. People were shocked to see the chilli powder attack and slapping the police officers inside the Chamber of the Parliament. They claim to protect and behave according to Buddhist teachings, but have violated the basic teachings of Buddha by behaving badly,” he added.
Premadasa also commended the people for standing against the unconstitutional moves of the President. Unless immediate remedies are made, the damages will be far worse he predicted.“Responsibility of the people is to protect the Constitution. The constitutional crisis was initiated with actions of the Executive. In the absence of a legal Government, the country is at a crisis, where development stopped, donations held up, and foreign assistance cancelled, businesses stuck along with the State sector employees now clueless of the next move. The hospitals have run short of medicines, along with many other projects that served the masses of Sri Lanka. They have even failed to issue the school uniforms to school children,” said MP Premadasa.