No con­grat­u­la­tory mes­sages from for­eign lead­ers

Sunday Times (Sri Lanka) - - FRONT PAGE -

No heads of govern­ment or state have so far sent con­grat­u­la­tory mes­sages to new Prime Min­is­ter Mahinda Ra­japaksa, the For­eign Min­istry has con­firmed.

How­ever, a spokesper­son also said it was be­cause the Cabi­net of Min­is­ters was only fi­nalised on Fri­day and, there­fore, a list had not been sent out to Sri Lanka’s mis­sions abroad for dis­sem­i­na­tion to host na­tions.

“The Cabi­net of Min­is­ters was only fi­nalised on Fri­day and Par­lia­ment was sub­se­quently dis­solved the same night,” the spokesper­son said yes­ter­day. “What we have at present is a care­taker Govern­ment. The new list will be sent fol­low­ing elec­tions in Jan­uary.”

The name of the Prime Min­is­ter is also nor­mally sent with the list of Cabi­net Min­is­ters, she said. “Since the list of Cabi­net Min­is­ters was not com­plete, it was not sent to mis­sions or cap­i­tals. They do not is­sue state­ments on care­taker gov­ern­ments.”

Mean­while, For­eign Min­is­ter Sarath Amunugama has writ­ten to heads of Sri Lankan mis­sions, in­struct­ing them to “per­son­ally” re­port back to the Sec­re­tary of For­eign Af­fairs “on a daily ba­sis, on any state­ments made in cap­i­tals and re­portage of events in Sri Lanka, in your coun­try/coun­tries of ac­cred­i­ta­tion...”

“Please make it ab­so­lutely clear to all con­cerned that this is a demo­cratic act so that the peo­ples’ wishes re­gard­ing the com­po­si­tion of the Govern­ment could be given ef­fect to. Sri Lanka has a long tra­di­tion of democ­racy and of hold­ing free and fair elec­tions,” the min­is­ter says.

In a Nov. 10 fax mes­sage to Sri Lanka’s mis­sions abroad, Min­is­ter Amunugama says the Pres­i­dent has dis­solved Par­lia­ment from mid­night of November 9.

“The rea­son for the Pres­i­dent’s de­ci­sion was the state of un­cer­tainty that pre­vailed re­gard­ing the an­tic­i­pated be­hav­iour of the Speaker of Par­lia­ment. The at­ten­tion of the Pres­i­dent was drawn to the in­for­ma­tion that, con­trary to the Con­sti­tu­tion and Stand­ing Or­ders of Par­lia­ment, the Speaker, with­out due author­ity, was at­tempt­ing to change Par­lia­men­tary pro­ce­dures and not pro­ceed with the state­ment of Govern­ment Pol­icy that was to have been de­liv­ered by His Ex­cel­lency the Pres­i­dent on the 14th of November, 2018, on which date Par­lia­ment was sched­uled to be re­con­vened by Gazette No­ti­fi­ca­tion,” the min­is­ter adds.

“There have been sev­eral re­quests to call for a gen­eral elec­tion so that the wishes of the peo­ple who are the ul­ti­mate repos­i­to­ries of the sovereignty of the coun­try, could be ad­dressed,” he says. “Ac­cord­ingly, the nom­i­na­tion pe­riod for the forth­com­ing gen­eral elec­tion has been gazetted as 19th to 26th November, 2018. The Elec­tion Com­mis­sioner has been in­formed of this no­ti­fi­ca­tion and it is an­tic­i­pated that he will now pro­ceed to act ac­cord­ingly.

“The elec­tion for new Mem­bers of Par­lia­ment will take place on the 5th Jan­uary 2019 and the new Par­lia­ment will meet on 17th Jan­uary, 2019. In the com­ing days, we will fol­low up with fur­ther in­for­ma­tion re­gard­ing the pro­ce­dure which will be set in mo­tion by the Na­tional Elec­tions Com­mis­sion, through the Elec­tion Com­mis­sioner.

“Pub­lic opin­ion in Sri Lanka is very much in favour of an elec­tion which will re­solve the po­lit­i­cal cri­sis which ham­pered ac­tiv­i­ties in the coun­try dur­ing the last few months. Please en­sure that this in­for­ma­tion is con­veyed to State and nonS­tate ac­tors in your coun­tries of ac­cred­i­ta­tion,” the Min­is­ter says.

There have been sev­eral re­quests to call for a gen­eral elec­tion so that the wishes of the peo­ple who are the ul­ti­mate repos­i­to­ries of the sovereignty of the coun­try, could be ad­dressed

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Sri Lanka

© PressReader. All rights reserved.