SL Parliament to meet with JVP in opposition
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 June 2005, 00:29 GMT]
Sri Lanka's parliament is scheduled to meet Wednesday for the first time after the Marxist Sinhala nationalist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) withdrew its support to the 14-month-old United Peoples' Freedom Alliance government (UPFA). JVP, a major constituent of the ruling alliance, and Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) signed an agreement to form UPFA on 20 January 2004 in Colombo.
Secretary General of the parliament has already taken steps to allocate seats in the opposition benches for the JVP parliamentarians who are to cross over from the government side to the opposition ranks Wednesday, sources said.
Meanwhile speculation is rife in Colombo political circles regarding the tabling of the controversial Joint Mechanism proposal now renamed by the government as Tsunami Relief Council (TRC).
Some political observers said that the government is likely to table the proposal as a statement and not as a draft bill through Social Services Minister Ms Sumedha Jeyasena on Wednesday. Others said that the TRC would be tabled on Friday in parliament as a government statement after it has been signed by the LTTE on the return of Mr.Vidar Helgessen, Norwegian Deputy Foreign Minister from
Killinochchi Wednesday, after talks with the LTTE leaders.
In the meantime, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians met Tuesday evening in Colombo and discussed the current political situation and future course of action, sources said.
The main opposition United National Party (UNP) has already indicated its position that it will not support the JM proposal if it is tabled in parliament before signing with the LTTE. TNA has taken the stand that the JM proposal should be signed first before it is brought to the parliament, sources said.
In addition to JVP, four other parties, Mahajana Eksath Peramuna (MEP), National United Alliance (NUA), Sri Lanka Mahajana Party (SLMP) and Desha Vimukthi Janatha Peramuna (DVJP) signed a pact to join the alliance on 2nd February 2004.
In the 225 member Sri Lanka legislature, the seats held by different parties are: UNP (82), SLFP (58), JVP (39), TNA (22), JHU (9), CWC (8) SLMC (5) UPF (1) and EPDP (1).
02.02.04 Four Party Leaders sign pact with JVP-SLFP alliance
20.01.04 SLFP-JVP alliance signed in Colombo