APRC proposals postponed again

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 22 January 2008, 13:47 GMT]
Rajitha Senaratne, the Sri Lankan minister of construction and engineering services, on Tuesday said that the proposal by the All Party Representatives Committee (APRC), scheduled to be handed over to Sri Lankan president on Wednesday, would be delayed as the People's United Front (Mahajana Eksath Peramuna—MEP) and the extremist all monks Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) have demanded to reduce the level of devolution of provincial power in the draft proposal.

The proposals would be delayed till the independence day of Sri Lanka on February 04.

The main opposition UNP and the extreme nationalist JVP, have already withdrawn from the APRC. As a consequence, the APRC proposals would lack two-thirds of majority in the Sri Lankan parliament.

The MEP, led by Dinesh Gunawardene, is a nationalist party in Mahinda Rajapaksa's UPFA government.

The JVP, the extreme nationalist party, which has been opposed to the CFA and the P-TOMS, succeeded in October 2006 in getting the five-bench Sri Lankan Supreme Court to declare the 18-year-old merger of NorthEastern Province (NEP), constituting the Northern and Eastern provinces as one unit, was invalid. Rajapaksa government de-merged the NEP following the Supreme Court judgement.

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