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SLPP to decide on Executive Presidency

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  • UPFA in talks to decide nominees for Constitutional Council  


By Nuwan Senarathna 

United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) MP Pavithra Wanniarachchi yesterday said a group of MPs loyal to Opposition Leader Mahinda Rajapaksa have commenced a discussion to decide their views on the Executive Presidency.

“We are going to decide whether to support to abolish Executive Presidency or not after the discussion,” Wanniarachchi told reporters at Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) headquarters.

She said once the group arrives at a conclusion on their stance on the Executive Presidency they would announce their views to the public. She noted the decision would be taken after considering the views of each member of the group and their ideas.

“Discussions are still ongoing and lots of views are being taken into consideration during the talks. Therefore I hope we will be able to come to a conclusion that everyone agrees upon and work together as a group to achieve our goals,” she added.

Wanniarachchi noted every Executive President after President J.R. Jayawardena came to power with a promise of abolishing the Executive Presidency but failed to keep their promises. She said whether to abolish Executive Presidency or not had been a key topic in Sri Lanka’s political arena since the early 1980s. Therefore a decision should be taken to commence future political plans of their group.

UPFA MP Dr. Ramesh Pathirana speaking in his turn, said he would personally support the SLPP backing the continuance of the Executive Presidency but said a reduction of power is an option to consider. However, Dr. Pathirana did not say how powers should be trimmed. 

Meanwhile, MP Pavithra Wanniarachchi said UPFA would take a decision on their nominees to the Constitutional Council (CC) after talks with members. She noted nominees for working committees on behalf the opposition would also be named in the coming weeks.

The 10-member CC is the apex decision making body that recommends the appointments to the independent commissions and high-ranking positions such as the Attorney General, Auditor General, Parliament Secretary General, IGP, Chief Justice and Superior Court Judges. 


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