Presidential system facilitated destrution of Tigers - Minister
Some elements are all out to destroy the executive presidential system within the framework of which the country was liberated from LTTE terrorism, Social Services and Social Development Minister Lionel Premasiri said at a press conference at the Information Department yesterday. A fresh attempt was being made to involve students in protests directed at the executive presidency. He said that this was nothing but a despicable attempt to destabilise the country.

Responding to media queries, the Galle District MP regretted that the working class and the student community were being used to campaign against the executive presidency which facilitated a military victory over the LTTE.

The UNP and JVP are now jointly campaigning for the abolition of the executive presidency. Both parties have vowed to defeat the incumbent President if he called an early presidential election ahead of parliamentary polls scheduled for early next year.

Now, that the war was over one of the major challenges facing the country would be the restoration of the northern railway track and the setting up of railway stations, Minister Premasiri said.

Appreciating D. S. Senanayake College for launching a four-day project titled Artistio 09’ to raise funds in support of the proposed railway station at Omanthai, the minister said this was a sterling example of their commitment to northern rehabilitation. He said that D. S. Senanayake College had thrown its weight behind the national cause at a time some disruptive elements were using students in anti-government protests.

The Minister strongly defended the right of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s eldest son, Namal’s Tharunyata Hetak helping their effort. Responding to media queries as well as criticism, the minister and a spokesman for Tharunyata Hetak, present on the occasion, emphasised that this issue should not be politicised.

The Minister said that he had taken the challenge of building the station at Omanthai which would cost about Rs 26 million. But the actual cost would be very much less as many organisations had assured support by way of cash and supplies, he said adding that security forces and the Civil Defence Force, too, were involved in this endeavour.

The organisers are planning to bring 100 students and 15 teachers from Vavuniya welfare camps to take part in the three-day exhibition and competition in Colombo beginning November 3. They are hoping to raise money by selling the work of the northern students and their D. S. colleagues as well as that of children of security forces and police personnel.

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