I. Frances Bulathsinghala: “A glimpse into the saga of Sri Lanka’s constitutional reforms,” South Asian Monitor, 24 February 2017,
The attempts by Sri Lanka’s National Unity government to draft a new constitution in order to seek a permanent solution to the long drawn Tamil ethnic question is afloat in the grey skies of ambiguity.
Although six subcommittees on various subjects had submitted their reports based on wide scale public consultations and the Steering Committee had drafted its own report based on the recommendations by the sub committees, plans of presenting the report to the Constitutional Assembly which comprises the current members of parliament, has been stalled.
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ONE: “Constitutional Reforms: Would it be a solution to the national question?” by Sumanasiri Liyanage, in The Island, 16 February 2016
A German friend of mine whom I met after 7 years in the middle of our conversation asked me about the state reforms project of the Yahapalana government. He said that many people he met had been sanguine about them in spite of some minor difficulties. Lankans have been talking about the state reforms since the second republican constitution was promulgated in 1978. Three main questions have been posed, namely, (1) The executive presidential system and the over-centralized architecture of the constitution; (2) the constitutional relevance in ethnically divided society; and (3) the representational deficiency in the system of election. After a heated debate in the 1980s and 1990, the heat of the constitutional debate has now subsided as many seem to believe that the present system has reached some stability. This may be partly due to the rigid character of the constitutional design. However, it is not totally true as we have had Parliaments with the necessary 2/3 majority [to effect change if requisite].
Daily News, 11 November 2016, where the title is “‘Solving the problems of Tamils is my obligation” ….. Emphasis via highlighting is the work of The Editor,Thuppahi
Emphasising his commitment to resolving Sri Lanka’s Tamil question, President Maithripala Sirisena has said he has an obligation to address the concerns of the island’s Tamils, most of whom had voted for him. About 90 percent of the people in Sri Lanka’s Tamil-dominated north voted for him in the January 2015 elections, he said: “They have confidence in me that I will solve their problems. So it is not only my responsibility, but also my obligation to solve their problems,” he told The Hindu in an exclusive interview on Wednesday at the Presidential Secretariat in Colombo.
Amid growing concern over the apparently slow-paced reconciliation efforts, President Sirisena said: “Reconciliation is not something that can be done in a few days.” The government’s endeavour must be acceptable to the Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims and other communities. “That is not an easy task,” he observed.
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