UNHRC. That’s United Nations Human Rights Commission. Key term, ‘Human Rights’. The UN system has all kinds of organizations mandated to deal with fairly well defined spheres of concern. ‘Human Rights’ does seem all-encompassing and that’s both good and bad. Good because it provides comprehensive cover. Bad because it makes for selectivity.
The politics look shrewd because politicians believe that without shrewdness survival in politics is impossible. If we are to go by what was witnessed during last week’s parliament sittings, one does not need to toil to find the shrewdest of them all among 225 members in the House for Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe had lifted the cup. The issue that…
The record of the Rajapaksa Government in the four years that have passed since the end of the civil conflict has not been great. It has dawdled on reconciliation and has sometimes done things that hurt the sensitivities of the minorities. Its members, including the male Minister in charge of women’s affairs, have expressed some peculiar ideas on the status
Opposition is weeping buckets that government is undermining Parliamentary supremacy. It was the other day that JVP’s newly appointed leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake told foreign journalists in Colombo that the two-third majority the government enjoys in Parliament was illegitimate. It was illegitimate, he said, as the people had never given the ruling
When do wars end? Do they end with surrender, with military annihilation of protagonist, the recovery of livelihoods, reconstruction of houses, hospitals, schools, return of the displaced, erasing off things with military signature, free and fair elections and a shaking of hands all around? Do wars end that way, ever, though? Isn’t it true that the wars that have truly
Main opposition party, the UNP, surprised everyone by handing over a No-Confidence motion against the government on the last sitting day of the parliament week. The motion, signed by 31 MPs was handed over to General Secretary of Parliament Dhammika Dassanayake on Friday by Chief Opposition Whip John Amaratunga. It was the day allocated for the vote of condolence on…
March is about ‘Geneva’ and has been for the past several years. March is also time for opinions from all quarters about how to handle ‘Geneva’. Naturally policy decisions and choices will be called ‘correct’ by some while others would use the word ‘folly’. The word in the street regarding ‘Geneva’ (which is, for those who might wonder, about human
The House sits this week from Tuesday (18) to Friday. There are two important debates listed for Tuesday and Wednesday. The debate on new regulations introduced under the Land Acquisition Act is scheduled for Tuesday while the debate on three regulations under the National Authority on Tobacco and Alcohol Act is scheduled for Wednesday.
People’s Liberation Front new leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake says that politics is a subject for the person who can see and understand aspirations of the people and not for those who limit themselves to photo opportunities. Speaking to The Nation he said that most known figures who left the JVP were not genuine and some of them were ‘hired traitors’.
The UNP missed the bus again on Friday. Last week’s parliamentary sittings were limited to two days – Wednesday and Friday. Friday had been allocated for a full day adjournment debate on the Norochcholai power plant and UNP stalwart Colombo District MP Ravi Karunanayake was to move the motion for the debate.
Assistant Secretary of USA for South and Central Asia Nisha Desai Biswal, currently visiting Sri Lanka, has issued a warning. The lady, sent here by President Barack Obama, says ‘if Sri Lanka doesn’t make meaningful progress in addressing the accountability issues, the patience of the international community on Sri Lanka will start to wear thin and urged Sri Lanka to
The Latin term Sub judice is used profusely in our Parliament. Whenever the government cannot continue answering questions on burning issues - it is natural that the majority of such hot issues are forwarded to courts and become pending cases. Under such circumstances the ministers can get away citing the issue is sub judice.
News reports out of New York highlight the arrest of an Indian consular official for allegedly underpaying her domestic servant, and for misrepresenting the salary on a U.S. visa application. The U.S. State Department assisted in the arrest, claiming for itself a “victory” in the war on human trafficking. Not paying a fair wage is wrong. What is also wrong
The big question, raised by the opposition, which went unanswered last week in parliament was, who stopped live coverage of sittings? The Nation readers know that live telecasting of proceedings in parliament had been a hot topic since it was commenced by Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa on October 23 last year. Unveiling a giant LED screen at the Jayanthipura public car…
India’s deputy consul general in New York Devyani Khobragade was arrested in New York. She had apparently lied on a visa application and tried to circumvent law designed to protect domestic employees of diplomats from exploitation. India was livid. India retaliated by withdrawing security to the US Embassy in Delhi, withdrew import licenses that allowed the commissary at the Embassy
The JVP is supposed to initiate its preliminary work of lobbying opposition and government MPs to muster their support for a motion addressed to the Speaker seeking the appointment of a Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC). This lobbying is aimed at investigating and recommending the removal of incumbent chairman of the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption (CIABOC),
I, Dr. Veerakanthipillai Shanmugarajah, Medical Superintendent, Mullaitivu General Hospital, being a Hindu, honestly, sincerely and solemnly swear and MAKE OATH as follows: I am Dr.Veerakanthipillai Shanmugarajah, presently Medical Superintendent ,Mullaitivu. I am a graduate of Jaffna University’s faculty of Medicine, and hold the qualification of Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery. I have had additional training in
All of a sudden the words no confidence motion is now heard. The government parliamentarians were considering last month to bring about a no confidence motion against the TNA Jaffna District MP S. Sritharan for violating the Constitution in an attempt to pay tribute to Velupillai Prabhakaran in Parliament during the budget debate. The Opposition expects the JHU to bring
Both the world and Sri Lanka most probably enter the New Year with a melancholy feeling. Of course we greet each other to the contrary, hoping that everything would go well. The formidable challenge before the world in 2014 or for the years to come would be the ‘global warming’ and the consequent or unrelated ‘natural disasters.’We lament on them…
Parliament released its latest Order book dated December 20, 2013 last week. It lists out questions to be asked and the motions to be presented. There are 123 Private Member motions and 21 motions for which no dates have been fixed. The latter is known in the common parlance as No-date motions.