Devananda ready to contest Northern PC polls

Douglas Devananda

Social Services and Social Welfare Minister Douglas Devananda said he would contest the Northern Provincial Council elections to restore democracy in the North.

"I am well aware that the entire Tamil community in the Northern Province is gagged and fettered by the LTTE. In the event I am elected the Chief Minister I would ensure that freedom of movement, freedom of speech, freedom of expression and freedom to work would be restored under a democratic process of administration for the benefit of the Tamil community," he told The Island yesterday (29).

Minister Devananda said that the late President R. Premadasa, former President Chandrika Kumaratunga and UNP Leader Ranil Wickremasinghe had miscalculated the objectives of the LTTE leader V. Prabakaran. President Mahinda Rajapaksa was the only person who had understood Prabhakaran correctly. Prabhakaran’s days were numbered and the Government security forces were on the verge of capturing the LTTE’s main stronghold in Killinochchi.

He said that Prabhakaran had never been interested in settling any issues and problems amicably and was resorting to violence to achieve his sinister objectives. One of his principal aims was to sabotage the State machinery and indoctrinate the Tamil community. The Tamil community was now aware of Prabhakaran’s limitations and his ambition to have a separate state concept would never be realised, Devananda said.

Asked about the political success of Eastern Province Chief Minister Pillaiyan, Minister Devananda said that during a short period of time Pillaiyan climbed the ladder of success because he realized that the core issues of the Tamil community could not be resolved through terrorism but only through democratic means. Pillaiyan never joined the Government for his personal gains, but to work to achieve the emancipation of the Tamil community in the Eastern Province.

Minister Devananda said he had been appointed Chairman of the Northern Province Special Task Force. He had met Karuna a few days ago and was able to discuss the development of the Northern Province. Karuna had also agreed that Prabhakaran’s hold over the people in the North was diminishing and he would meet his waterloo soon.

He said that Karuna and himself were lucky enough to leave the LTTE as they were convinced that LTTE efforts to establish a separate state would be in vain. Karuna was also in favour of the creation of a lasting peace and the introduction of a devolution package under democratic form of governance.pic

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