Sri Lanka’s UNP compromises on independent constitutional council: PM

COLOMBO (EconomyNext) – Sri Lanka’s ruling administration has compromised on establishing ade-politicized public service by allowing a majority of a constitutional council to be made up of politicians, as demanded by the opposition, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe said.

The Constitutional Council will have seven politicians and three independent members. Wickramasinghe said he had to give way to the opposition, because he did not have a majority in parliament.

Wickremasinghe said he did not agree that the constitutional change went far enough. After the next election, it should be re-constituted, he said after making the parliament into a constituent assembly.

M A Sumanthiran, a legislator representing Sri Lanka’s Tamil National Alliance, said the attempt to make all members of the Consitution Council parliamentarians would nullify the objective of the Constutional Council.

"So the whole process, the whole objective of depoliticizing this body will be totally lost," he warned parliament ealier on Tuesday.

A clause relating to the President taking advice from the Prime Minister to appoint minister will also be retained.

The constitutional amendment will also have provisions to restore a two-term limit for the President. It will extend the time the President can dissolve parliament to 4.5 years from the current one year after election.

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