PA-JVP talks continue

[TamilNet, Friday, 31 August 2001, 18:22 GMT]
The first round of crucial talks between President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge and senior leaders of the Marxist-Janata Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) which began Friday around 3 p.m. concluded late in the evening. JVP's Propaganda Secretary and Parliamentarian Mr.Wimal Weerawansa said another round of talks between them and the President is now being held at President's House.

Ministers Mangala Samaraweera and Nimal Sripala de Silva are participating in the talks now being held at the invitation of President Chandrika Kumaratunge sources said. The delegation of the JVP comprises General Secretary Tilvin Silva and Mr.Wimal Weerawansa, Propaganda Secretary.

The talks centered on the proposals submitted by the JVP. The proposals included the reconvening of parliament, cancellation of the referendum, the establishment of five independent commissions for police, elections, judiciary, public service and media, the reduction of ministers to twenty and the general election under a probationary government, after one year, government sources said.

The senior leaders of the JVP earlier had two rounds of talks with President Chandrika Kumaratunge. The President accepted some of the proposals of the JVP and promised to send her response as regards the rest of the proposals after consulting with constituent parties of the ruling People's Alliance.

When the ruling PA opened talks with the main opposition United National Party last Saturday in a bid to form a national reconciliation government, the JVP issued an ultimatum to President Chandrika Kumaratunge to decide on their proposal for a 'probationary government' before 31 August.

The Prime Minister on Wednesday replied to the JVP high command seeking more explanation to their controversial proposals. The JVP Thursday submitted their written explanation to Prime Minister Mr.Ratnasiri Wickremanayake.

Meanwhile President Chandrika Kumaratunge is expected to address the golden jubilee celebration meeting of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party scheduled to be held at Henry Peiris grounds, Thimbirigasaya in Colombo Sunday September 2. Political circles said her address as the President of the party, would reveal her steps she proposes to take during the course of next week before prorogued parliament is reconvened on September 7 Friday.

The Sri Lanka Freedom Party was founded by the late Prime Minister S.W.R.D.Bandaranaike fifty years ago on September 2, 1951 and later led by his wife late Ms Srimavo Bandaranaike after the demise of S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike President Chandrika Kumaratunge took over the mantle of presidentship of the SLFP following the demise of her mother late Prime Minister Srimavo Bandaranaike last year.

Next week is considered by political analysts as a crucial week for the country to determine its future and stability. The decision-makers are now the only son Anura Bandaranaike and one of her daughters Ms Chandrika of the late two Prime ministers who are now at the helm of parliament and executive presidency respectively.

Speaker Anura Bandaranaike has sought advice from constitutional experts regarding resummoning parliament if the government prorogues for a second time, when the power struggle between the two main political parties expected take place in parliament next week, authoritative sources said.

In a separate development, the Central Working Committee of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party Thursday night decided to dissolve parliament and go for a fresh general election if the talks with the Marxist-Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna failed to reach an agreement to solve the present crisis, party sources said. It further decided to conduct the general election under the existing system of election.

"There won't be any independent commission for election as proposed by the main opposition United National Party and the Marxist-Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP). This decision was taken at the central working committee of the SLFP," party sources said.


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