Category Archives: power sharing

The Chinese Way: Two Web Site Observations


I am an American who has lived in China for three years. (And very much like living here.) My opinion is not as factual, and surely not as broadly informed, as many of the others so well-expressed here. But something I notice, from the inside, is that China usually plays “the long game.” They are bellicose when they see it serving their immediate interests. But they see little advantage in American- or Russian-style braggadocio. They are more likely to exert their influence quietly and economically.

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Filed under accountability, elephant tales, politIcal discourse, power politics, power sharing, security, self-reflexivity, the imaginary and the real, trauma, truth as casualty of war, world events & processes

No Surprises with Sirisena. Challenging Mike Roberts

An Introductory Note from Michael Roberts

 Gerald Peiris and I were undergraduates at Ramanathan Hall Peradeniya in the late 1950s and met on occasions when we were pursuing postgrad studies in UK and I visited Cambridge. Thereafter we were colleagues in the Arts Faculty at Peradeniya University from 1966 to 1975. Quite vitally, we were active members of the Ceylon Studies Seminar. During those seminars and at times in private tête-à-tête over drinks the two of us occasionally engaged in discussions, sometimes with sharp disagreements on specific issues.


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Creeping Imperialism in Sri Lanka via Neoliberal Impositions and the UNHRC

Tamara Kunanayakam: “Introduction” to her academic article “Neoliberalism versus Sovereignty: The Case of Sri Lanka” in Sri Lanka Journal of Economic Research, Volume 6(1,) November 2018, pp.125-146…. [without the footnotes … and with underlining imposed]

A fundamental principle of international law, incorporated in a wide range of international and regional instruments, is permanent sovereignty over the nation’s wealth and resources and all its economic activities as a basic constituent of the right of peoples to self-determination and its corollary, the duty of States to respect sovereign equality in their relations with other States. It is a recognition that there can be no political independence without economic, social and cultural independence, “free from all forms of interference or pressure, direct or indirect, of whatever sort and under whatever pretext.” For independence to be complete, any future attempt to restore foreign influence or domination must be prevented forever.

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Incisive Thoughts on the Presidency in Today’s Situation from Rajan Philips

Rajan Philips, in Sunday Island, 6 January 2019, with this title “Leaving Sirisena alone and finding a way to change the Executive Presidency”

There is redundancy in the 2019 air. Impeach, censure or force his resignation – all targeting Maithripala Sirisena for his rampant violations of the constitution in 2018. He deserves any and all of them. The question is whether he is worth the effort and energy that any one of them will involve. Impeaching him or forcing his resignation will only remove the man but will leave in place the institution of executive presidency that became Sirisena’s wrecking wrench. It would be more worthwhile to spend time in radically reforming the executive presidency than waste time getting rid of Maithripala Sirisena who will be gone in one year anyway. Keeping it simple, leave Sirisena severely alone and keep targeting the executive presidency.

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As Ominous As Ludicrous: Snaps Epitomizing Our Politics in 2018

…… and …..

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Filed under accountability, landscape wondrous, life stories, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, power sharing, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, the imaginary and the real, trauma, unusual people, world events & processes

KM de Silva’s Biographical Routes to the Recent Past

Sri Lanka: The Recent Past by Kingsley M. de Silva is now on the bookshelves in Sri Lanka.

The doyen among the contemporary historians of the island has deplye personal biographical expirences and his considerable reserch material to pen biographical tales that can illuminate our history, Editor, Thuppahi

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Internal Contradictions in the Present Constitution demand Flexible Adjustments towards a living-workable constitution

D. Laksiri Mendis, in Island, 26 November 2018, where the chosen title is “Is the dissolution of parliament legal and legitimate?”

After much consideration, I decided to write this article on the above subject as I have had long years of experience in Constitutional Law, Legislative Drafting and Statutory Interpretation in many parts of the world. At present, I conduct lectures on Legislative Drafting and Statutory Interpretation at the Sri Lanka Law College and draft legislation for various international organizations and statutory boards in Sri Lanka and abroad on a regular basis.



1. Since attaining Independence in 1948, Sri Lanka had three Constitutions, namely, Soulbury Constitution 1946, First Republican Constitution 1972 and Second Republican Constitution 1978. All three Constitutions differed very much from one another.


2. Soulbury Constitution adopted the Westminster model of Government and His Majesty King George VI of Great Britain was retained as Head of State. Late Sir Ivor Jennings, who drafted the Soulbury Constitution for Ceylon, incorporated section 29(2) from the Irish Constitution to protect minorities. In the Privy Council Lord Pearce held in Queen vs Liyanage (1965) that the Criminal Law (Special Provisions) Act 1962 ultra vires the Constitution, as the Soulbury Constitution has recognized the doctrine of separation of powers. This case is cited in many Commonwealth countries for constitutional interpretation. Continue reading


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