SLFP opposed to Federalism - General Secretary
[TamilNet, Tuesday, 24 December 2002, 18:53 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Freedom Party will remain implacably opposed to the federal system in the North-East as agreed between the United National Front government and the LTTE, said Maithripala Sirisena, the SLFP general secretary and a member of parliament, speaking at a meeting of the party’s youth wing in Pollanaruwa, today.
He said, “Sri Lanka is a unitary country. We will never allow the federal system in this country. Under the guise of peace, federalism is just an attempt to divide the country and allow the North-East to separate.
“Currently, there is a separate government in the North-East. A separate Army, Police, Courts and Banks are operating there. The judicial administration of that part of the country is under the control of the LTTE. What else is needed? In such a situation, the current proposal for federalism is just to facilitate separation. Our party will never accept this. This will only lead to the division of the country. The UNF government is trying to change the unitary state that has been maintained for many years and is helping the LTTE to create a separate country.
“In the past, the president had many executive powers. But currently many of them are powers in name only. In the future, the president may have to use her authority, otherwise the division of the country will become a dangerous reality."
Many prominent members of the party, and members of the party’s youth wing were present at this meeting.