UNP ready to support Con reforms but won’t allow one family show

By Saman Indrajith


The UNP yesterday said that it would support constitutional amendments if they were brought through the relevant committees headed by ministers Dinesh Gunawardena, Dew Gunasekera and Prof. Tissa Vitharana.

Participating at the committee stage debate on budget Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe said that his party was about 90 per cent in favour of with the proposals made by the All Party Representative Committee (APRC) chaired by Prof. Tissa Vitarana.

"Although we did not make representations to this committee, we are aware of its proposals. We are for proposals for the abolition of the executive presidency," he said.

Wickremesinghe pointed out that Minister Dinesh Gunawardena had already submitted an interim report recommending reform to the electoral system.

Apart from that, Minister Dew Gunasekara had produced a report, which contained proposals and recommendations to remedy shortcomings in the 17th Amendment to the Constitution.

Some government backbenches welcomed Wickremesinghe’s offer by thumping their desks. But their joy was short-lived as the Opposition Leader declared his party would never support constitutional reforms aimed at promoting, what he called, the rule by one family. This prompted government members to protest and shout at the Opposition leader.

Wickremesinghe shot back: "We offered to help you. If you do not need our help, please let us know. Then we can move ahead in our own way."



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