JHU defends Ranawaka; says he is more suitable for presidency

Thursday, 2 April 2015 00:36 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

By Chamodi Gunawardana The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) yesterday said that JHU Parliamentarian and Power and Energy Minister Champika Ranawaka was more suitable for the post of President than any of the other individuals who had been spreading rumours about Ranawaka opposing the 19th Amendment because he harboured ambitions of becoming the President in 2020. JHU Western Provincial Councillor Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe, addressing a news conference yesterday in Colombo, said: “The JHU will decide when to field Champika Ranawaka as the President or whether to nominate him. It is a decision for the party to take. And it will not be Professor Nirmal Ranjith Dewasiri, Author Gamini Viyangoda or the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) as they are claiming that Minister Ranawaka is aspiring to become the Executive President in 2020 and that was why the JHU was against the 19th Amendment,” Warnasinghe said. Speaking further, he explained that the JHU opposed the 19th Amendment because there were many contradictions between the responsibilities and powers of the Executive Presidency in the 19th Amendment and these would create public criticism and confusion. “There are many mistakes regarding the Sinhala translation of the 19th Amendment. At some point of this draft bill it is stated that the Executive President is the Leader of the State, Government and Executive and the Commander-in-Chief, while in some other places of this document it is stated that the Prime Minister is the Leader of the Government and that the Cabinet will be under the purview of the Prime Minister and in the 19th Amendment draft bill it has also not been clearly stated who the representatives of the Independent Commissions should be accountable to. These are the reasons why we went to the Supreme Court and filed a petition against the 19th Amendment,” Warnasinghe added. He also said that to pass the 19th Amendment in Parliament the Government needed a two-thirds majority and for it to obtain this a better amendment should be introduced.