Written by Keshala Dias
06 Apr, 2017 | 8:49 pm
Yet another sitting of Parliament ended prematurely on Thursday April 06, with the House of Legislation descending into chaos.
Tensions flared when members of the Joint Opposition raised the issue of not being allocated adequate time during the adjournment motion debate.
The House was to debate the UN Human Right’s Council’s Resolution on Sri Lanka.
MP Dinesh Gunawardena: “The parliamentarians of the Joint Opposition have been allocated only 31 minutes. It is the Joint Opposition that speaks about the dangers that this country faces. 210 minutes have been given to speak about the matter, and we have only 32. They are prepared to talk good about the bad things that are going to happen to the country for 180 minutes”.
MP Gayantha Karunathilaka: “You cannot take all the time. As an act of respect to the Late Maha Nayaka Davuldena Gnanissara Thero we have decided to end the proceedings by 3 p.m. and attend the final rites ceremony”.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya: “Can’t we talk about this and reach a fair consensus?”
MP Dullas Alahapperuma: “The adjournment motion is being moved by the Joint Opposition. In the past, the person who moved it received more time”.
MP Lakshman Kiriella: “There will be no problem if they speak to the Leader of the SLFP and resolve this”.
MP Dinesh Gunawardena: “Please resolve this”.
MP Anura Kumara Dissanayaka: “Parliamentarians should not be recognised as leaders based on where they sit in the Chamber. If that happens, the ruling Party has the ability to make a Party sit on the other side and get hold of the position of the Opposition Leader as well. The traditions of the Parliament should be preserved”.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya: “I don’t hope to hold a debate. This can be discussed at the party leaders meeting. This is a problem for me as well. The approval of the alliance is required”.
MP Dinesh Gunawardena: “We have not joined the government even though the SLFP and UNP have joined together”.
MP Bandula Gunawardena: “Be kind enough to at least provide us with 100 minutes. We are moving the motion. We are the people on the side of the war heroes”.
MP S.M. Marikkar: “The statement made by MP Bandula Gunawardena is an insult to us. The people who robbed the country hiding behind the cloak of patriotism are trying to sell the war heroes to come back to power and betray us. Please withdraw that statement. Ask him to withdraw it”.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya: “Shall we commence the debate MP Nanayakkara?”
MP Vasudeva Nanayakkara: “You cannot bury reality using the rules. Let us make the rules allowing for reality”.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya: “Let’s discuss it now. Honourable Dinesh Gunawardena”.
MP Dinesh Gunawardena: “52 parliamentarians have only received 32 minutes. Declare your decision on this first”.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya: “I am acting as per the approval of the Alliance. I granted time with the approval of the Alliance. No matter how much you deny it, you were allowed to join the Party leaders meeting with the approval of the Alliance”.
MP Dinesh Gunawardena: “You can keep that. You do not need to admit me there”.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya: “Resolve it separately”.
MP Dinesh Gunawardena: “This is not a fishmongers…………….., is it?”
MP Lakshman Kiriella: “We have given them the opportunity allowed to us. If they do not want it, then I seek that the parliament be adjourned”.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya: “Then I will have to adjourn the Parliament. You have wasted 28 minutes of the 30 minutes that you received. You did not provide me with any cooperation during this debate. I am disappointed. Parliament is adjourned”.
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