Govt. urged to review its reconciliation strategies inimical to national interest


The Joint Opposition (JO) has urged the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government to review its strategies as regards post-war national reconciliation process.

The JO warns of dire consequences unless the ongoing process is reversed and remedial action taken to rectify major flaws in the strategy.

Former External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris has sent The Island the following statement in his capacity as the Chairman of a Special Committee tasked with formulating their response. Prof. Peiris has dealt with the decision to call for submissions from diaspora organizations on the design of structures, processes and measures for truth, accountability, reparations and non-recurrence and other vital matters as agreed in Geneva sessions in last Sept-Oct, 2015:

"We are very concerned that the government’s approach to formulating the new Constitution involves a very heavy and disproportionate emphasis on the demands and the aspirations of Tamil Diaspora."

"We firmly believe that whatever changes are made in the Constitution of the country, such changes must reflect the needs and the thinking of Sri Lanka’s own people."

"It is certainly not satisfactory for this to be relegated to second place in an attempt to please the Diaspora and to accommodate their requirements with regard to so fundamental matter as the highest law of the country which is expected to govern generations to come."

"This is the main problem we have with regard to the proposed Office of Missing Persons (OMP) legislation. It is our view that this is the most dangerous piece of legislation which has been drafted in recent past."

"Again the emphasis is entirely on the Diaspora. The seven persons appointed by the Constitutional Council have the power to delegate their functions and authority to foreigners. They have unlimited power to accept money from foreign governments and INGOs and enter into agreements with them on any matter without any form of restrictions."

"Foreigners can be permitted to enter military camps and installations and to put questions and make demands which had to be fulfilled without question."

"Members of armed forces, police as well as public must oblige them in every way. Failure to do so is a punishable offense which can be reported to the Court of Appeal. Then it will be dealt with as contempt of Court of Appeal itself."

"Provisions in the proposed OMP law have special application to the Northern and Eastern Provinces of the country without being applicable elsewhere. The Right to Information Act (RIA) has no application, nor is the protection offered by the Evidence Ordnance available."

"The JO feels that this will involve enormous danger to the country and its vital interests and proposes during the next few weeks to fully inform the public of the jeopardy in which the country stands."

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