National Movement for a Just Society calls for wide consultations on new Constitution

Opposition Members protest the 20A in Parliament

ECONOMYNEXT- Prof Rohan Samarajiva is saying that process of making a new constitution to the country is not something that is owned by a party which won an election.

Speaking at a special press conference held this morning by the National Movement for Just Society (NMJS), Samarajiva said that the party which won an election has the right to approve some laws and regulations but they don’t have the right to own a constitution.

He said that the NMJS wrote to the committee which advertised through media calling for suggestions from the members of the public for drafting a new Constitution asking about the legal status of the committee, who appointed it and what is the exact role played by them as there were certain uncertainties.

Taking examples he said that in 1972 and 1978 constitution-making involved everyone even though the latter was criticized from the outside.

He also added that a committee similar to the committee appointed after 2015 to hear public suggestions under the leadership of Lal Wijenayake which documented and reported after going all around the country gathering suggestion from people or an all-party committee or a parliamentary select committee should be established to make some reference to this process.

He said otherwise putting forward a lawyer by the President who appeared for his personal court cases makes it a process which involves in making simple laws, “even making simple laws has broader context,” he added.

He also said that NMJS hopes that the government will do as mentioned in Vistas for Prosperity and Splendour appointing a select committee which will gather suggestions from the people and the society.

Further, Samarajiva said that making the new constitution through authoritative and forced processes will make it like the 18th Amendment had a very short life span and to which no one spoke in favour when it was abolished. (Colombo/Nov13/2020)

Reported by Imesh Ranasinghe

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