President Sirisena addresses OGP summit

President Sirisena addresses OGP summit

Written by Staff Writer

19 Jul, 2018 | 1:58 am

COLOMBO (News 1st) – President Maithripala Sirisena says, during the last three years, Sri Lanka has taken several important steps to break the link between power and corruption in the country.

The Head of State made this statement today (July 18), while addressing the “Open Government Partnership Global Summit” held in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. The Global Session, chaired by Georgian Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze, began this morning, with the participation of Presidents, Prime Ministers, Speakers, Ministers and other representatives from 75 member countries.

President Sirisena spoke at the Session on the theme, “How the decisions taken at the OGP could be used for the welfare and benefit of the people of the member countries.”

Speaking at the session President Sirisena stated that following;

“When we talk about Open Government Partnership, we have to break the link between power and corruption to completely eliminate fraud, corruption, wastage, and theft. Power and corruption are moving at parallel levels. When I was elected the President of Sri Lanka, the Executive Presidency in Sri Lanka, had absolute power unlike any other Head of State in the world. Corruption went ahead along with these unlimited Executive Powers. So within 6 months of coming into power, I devolved the powers vested with the Executive Presidency to Parliament, through the 19th amendment to the Constitution. Through this Parliament was strengthened. I strengthened the powers of the independent commissions relating to bribery and corruption in a way that no politician or state official can ever interfere with its proceedings. Politicians, state officials, citizens of the country as well as businessmen are answerable to these independent commissions. Several more programmes and conferences are being held for politicians and state officials. The general public is also being educated on fraud and corruption and how they use these powers. The people are being educated via the media on how they can lodge complaints.”

Sri Lanka was offered membership of the Open Government Partnership in 2015, following the election of President Maithripala Sirisena.

Sri Lanka is the first South Asian nation to receive membership of the Open Government Partnership. The summit is set to conclude tomorrow (July 19).

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