President addresses the nation following election

President addresses the nation following election

President addresses the nation following election

Written by Staff Writer

16 Nov, 2019 | 10:44 pm

Colombo (News 1st): President Maithripala Sirisena made a special address to the nation soon after the end of the casting of votes for the presidential election.

“A new president will assume office tomorrow. The first challenge this new president will have to face is to appoint a cabinet free from corruption from the 225 members who are currently in parliament. I believe that we were able to hold such a peaceful election because I remained independent. What is the difference between the election that I contested in 2015 and the presidential election in 2019? The difference between the two elections is a good indicator of how far democracy in society has progressed. You and I both know that the new president will have many duties to fulfill. For the welfare of the general public of the country and for the sustainable development of the nation, the newly elected president will have to strengthen the democracy in this country and build on the foundation of democracy that I have set during my tenure, and also to strengthen the unlimited media freedom that I gave and build on that as well. I believe and I hope that the new president will continue the campaigns launched by me including the campaign against drugs, the local food production programs, the programs launched to reduce kidney diseases in the country, the Gramashakthi program, and the Daruwan Rakimu national program. I hope that the new president will implement these programs even better in the future. No matter the challenges that I faced during my tenure I worked towards creating a democratic framework in the country. Certain decisions I took as a president are controversial. Some people said that although I took the sword out from the scabbard I did not use it. But I used that word. I sacked my own prime minister and I appointed a new prime minister. I signed a controversial gazette notification dissolving the parliament that stirred debate among the general public. I took stern decisions to curb the spread of drugs and the underworld in the country at a time when these things were severely affecting the general public. It has been 11 months since the police department was taken under my purview. There were many problems that had accumulated at the police department. During these 12 months, we amended the laws required by the police. We formulated new laws. As the management and administration of the police department and the lack of resources at the department severely affects the ensuring of peace in the country during those 11 months I brought about change within the department. It is important for us to consider the law and order in the country, democracy, the unitary status of the country, territorial integrity of the country. Unity among the Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim, Malay and Burgher communities is important. One of the most sorrowful incidents that you and I both faced during my tenure was the brutal April 21st attacks. I respectfully call to memory the victims both Sri Lankan and foreign who suffered and lost their lives in the attack. That was an incident that could have been prevented. Especially if a person asks me as to if I am happy and content about my tenure as president of this country, without any hesitation I would tell that person that I am happy and content about my tenure as president. The reason I would say this is because I have given many things to the general public during my tenure. The people of this country would not feel this too much. But freedom and democracy were strengthened, steps were taken towards creating a state service free of corruption, I fulfilled my duties towards creating a pious society. At this moment that I am stepping down from the office of the president after serving the general public of this country for 5 years, I would like to wish the new president of the country and I hope that he can serve the country with strength, honesty, and confidence. Although I step down from the office of the president today I will continue to serve the loving people of this country and make the necessary sacrifices in the future. Justice should be our strength. Social justice should reign supreme.”

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