implementation of 13th Amendment
A top government
minister appears to be blocking government moves to implement
the 13th Amendment, The Nation learns.
The minister, a senior Tamil politician, has voiced his
disapproval against President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s decision to
appoint seasoned former Parliamentarian V. Anandasangaree to
head the Northern Council.
“The Tamil minister has objected to the appointment and has
instead demanded that he be given control of the council once it
is established,” sources said. According to the sources,
objections raised by the minister have caused the delay in
implementing the provisions of the 13th Amendment to the
Constitution, and to gazette the setting up of the Interim
Councils for the North and East Provinces.
“This politician cannot head the Council for the simple reason
that when you are a minister, the Constitution does not permit
you to get into the provincial set up,” they noted.
The Nation reliably learns that India has expressed support
towards the Northern Council being led by a non-LTTE moderate
politico, who is neither a pro-LTTE nor anti-LTTE. Supporter,
but maintains a moderate outlook.
The Nation early this month, reported that President Rajapaksa
is likely to announce the full implementation of the provisions
of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution shortly.
Rajapaksa is expected to implement this before the scheduled
visit of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Sri Lanka.
Prime Minister Singh is expected to attend Sri Lanka’s Diamond
Jubilee of independence on February 4 next year as chief guest.
Successive governments failed to implement the provisions of the
13th Amendment fully, enabling the provinces to administer their
areas as separate entities.
The government is now planning to devolve the areas of law and
order to the two provinces, which have hitherto been under the
control of the central government.