Written by Staff Writer
24 May, 2019 | 8:02 pm
Colombo (News 1st): MP Kavinda Jayawardena stepped down from the special parliamentary select committee appointed to look into the 04/21 attacks.
The speaker today informed parliament that Dr Rajitha Senaratne will take MP Jayawardena’s position in the committee. He also informed that Dr Nalinda Jayatissa will also be appointed to the committee.
Speaking to News 1st MP Kavinda Jayawardena noted that the committee will convene daily and more than the people who lost their lives and injured what is important is to restore the livelihoods of these victims and restore their mental and physical health. He noted that he will dedicate all of his time for this.
When questioned, if he believes that the people who were affected by these attacks will receive justice through this committee, he noted that a just investigation should be conducted into this and the people must receive justice and we are mindful of that. He noted that they are raising their voices for this and will stand up for this.
MP Jayawardena said this committee should deliver justice to the people as that is what the people of this country expect.
Meanwhile, the United People’s Freedom Alliance officially announced yesterday (May 23) that they will boycott the special parliamentary select committee.
However, the governing faction alleges that UPFA MPs have signed the proposal to appoint the select committee. The matter was debated in parliament today (May 24).
MP Dayasiri Jayasekara said they do not have an issue with the committee functioning, however, the issue is that the committee was formed during a time a no-confidence motion has been presented against Minister Rishard Bathiudeen. He added that if matters pertaining to this motion is discussed at this committee and if he is exonerated of all these allegations, and if the motion of no confidence is taken up after that, then they have an issue with the committee.
Responding to this Leader of the House Minister Lakshman Kiriella noted that they changed the duties assigned to the select committee. He added that Jayampathi Wickremerathne brought an amendment and it states that allegations against any parliamentarian, or governor or anyone else can be examined. He requested the UPFA to hand over any evidence they have in this regard.
However, MP Nimal Lanza pointed out that they signed the proposal to appoint a select committee in hope of getting justice for the victims of the04/21 attacks. He added that without even informing the MPs who signed this proposal that an amendment was made. He said this is a very bad precedent.
The speaker pointed it out to the MP that this was presented to the house and carried out after it was approved by the house. MP Nimal Lansa disagreeing on this fact noted that they did not endorse or sign for this. He added that the proposal was signed not for the government but for the Catholic people.
Adding to this MP Dayasiri Jayasekara said there are 5 main duties of this committee, however, he noted that they have no proposal to hold discussions on a Parliamentarian, or governor or any other MP at the select committee.
Making a statement regarding the matter UNP MP Ashu Marasinghe noted that the main accused in this is the Minister of Law and order and Defence, therefore, he should be summoned.
UNP MP Harshana Rajakaruna stated that what they are requesting for is a proper investigation by the Police and the Army and he noted that if there is a requirement to arrest anyone they must be arrested. He questioned; “Does anyone from the government or the opposition have any knowledge on how to identify these terrorists properly?”
Responding to this MP Dayasiri Jayasekera noted that the three arms of the state the legislature, executive and the judiciary of the country are functioning and according to ordinary traditions they do not work towards questioning a president in this parliament or speaking against a president in this parliament.
He said it would be better if these MPs who were elected in 2015 learn that and added they are ready to support a process that will look into the matter justly, but they are not ready to support any other matter.
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