EPDP wants interim administration for North and East

[TamilNet, Saturday, 24 November 2007, 02:15 GMT]
The Eelam People’s Democratic Party (EPDP), a pro-government paramilitary group-cum-political party, has proposed setting up an Interim Administration for the North and East as the way forward to resolve the ethnic conflict, the Daily Mirror reported. An interim administration for Northeast capable of effecting self-rule, especially towards restoring civil normalcy and the resettlement of hundreds of thousands of displaced people was the primary demand of the LTTE when it began the Norwegian-brokered negotiations with the then UNP government in 2002. The UNP rejected the notion, saying it would encourage then President Chandrika Kumaratunga to sack its Parliamentary government.

Douglas Devananda
Leader of EPDP, Douglas Devananda (Photo: Hinduonnet)
Instead the UNP supported negotiations on a permanent, federal solution. When the LTTE “temporarily” suspended its negotiations in 2003, demanding the government implement agreements already reached on rehabilitation, the movement also proposed the resumption of negotiations based on an interim administration.

After rejecting as unacceptably weak, proposals by the government, the LTTE then drafted its own proposals, titled the Interim Self-Governing Authority (ISGA).

But president Kumaratunga seized ministries from the UNP government, and then dissolved parliament, triggering elections in which the UNP was defeated.

EPDP leader Douglas Devananda, in a statement said it could be felt by all communities that a permanent solution to the Tamil speaking people would neither lead to separation nor endanger the rights of another community, the Daily Mirror reported.

The EPDP is “stressing that the more the power between the communities is devolved the more they would be united,” the paper said.

The EPDP has suggested the appointment of an Interim Council consisting of representatives of the people in the North and East for a limited period of time since there is no political leadership in the two Provincial councils.

The party proposes the appointment of an expert Committee to advise the Interim Council consisting of intellectuals, professionals, religious dignitaries, community leaders, eminent people from expatriate community, renowned writers etc.

“Since it is not possible to hold elections in the north and east provincial councils an Interim Administration should be immediately established by exercising the power of the Chief Minister and the Board of Ministers to take all steps necessary to ease the sufferings of the people,” the EPDP leader said.

“Such an exercise would instill confidence amongst the people. Once normalcy is restored and the people are relieved of their sufferings, elections can he held to the Provincial Councils.”

He also said the Provincial Councils should be able to excise fully all the subjects and powers to the extent provided in the amendment to the constitution and action should also be subsequently taken to initiate asymmetric devolution of power to the Northern and Eastern provinces.

“Once these stages are implemented, we can easily create a condition politically conducive to rid of the hurdles in reaching a final solution. At this stage, the stumbling blocks could be easily removed through exemplary acts and political debates,” he said.

Related Articles:
04.11.03   LTTE's proposals significant - Armitage
01.11.03   Tigers release proposal for Interim Self Governing Authority
31.10.03   LTTE submits IA proposals to Norwegian Ambassador


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