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 PARLIAMENT

House remembers four MPs

Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa presided when Parliament met at 1 p.m. Yesterday. After presentation of papers and oral questions House took up condolence motions of ex-MPs P D Weerasinghe de Silva, V Navaratnam, E Ratnasabapathy and H Chandraman de Silva.

Water Supply and Drainage Minister and Chief Government Whip Dinesh Gunawardena:

I present the condolence motion of late MP P D Weerasinghe de Silva to the Parliament. He was born January 25, 1935. He represented Balapitiya seat in Galle. He had five brothers and sisters in the family. He had his primary education at Balapitiya Siddhartha Vidyalaya and secondary education at Nalanda Vidyalaya, Colombo. Then he entered the Law College and passed out as a senior Counsellor.

He received a training under Dr Colvin R de Silva. He mostly appeared in Court cases on behalf of ordinary people.

He engaged in left politics.

He contested 1970 General Election under United Front and entered Parliament. He contributed to develop transport, health and education in the country. He lived with the people. He dedicated his time, wealth and labour towards economic, social, political and religious well-being of the country.

He served 71 years and expired November 29, 2006. We got to know that his wife who was to visit Parliament to see the debate today has also passed away accidentally. I propose to sent this motion to express grievances to be sent his children and relations.

Joseph Micheal Perera (UNP):

I have worked with him for a short period. He was a member of the left movement and followed leftist ideology.

The exemplary life he led gives us several examples. During Parliamentary debates he presented his ideas to the point.

Even though the ideologies were different, we were able to work in harmony.

Justice Minister Athauda Seneviratne:

He hailed from an educated and respectable family in the area. He was the eldest of the family. All the members of his family entered politics.

He was a humble person. He worked for the betterment of ordinary people in the area.

Today the country is moving forward with the changes they brought to the country with the left movement.

Vasudeva Nanayakkara (UPFA): He was another strong member from Lanka Sama Samaja Party. Both he and I entered the Parliament together in 1970. During the time he spent at the Law College he joined the left movement on behalf of people.

He was a very honest person and worked according to his conscience. Weerasinghe was a very sensitive person, but when facing challenges he was very strong. He intervened to achieve rights of the ordinary people. We salute him and express our condolences to his family members.

Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms Deputy Minister Gamini Wijith Wijithamuni de Zoysa: As schoolboys we worked together in youth activities. He dedicated himself to usher a new era to the country through the left movement.

Today there is no MP in this Parliament from Balapitiya. This is an unfortunate situation. He made an enormous effort to develop regional productions such as handlooms.

Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms Minister D E W Gunasekere: First we express our condolences over his death. Often we met him at Dr Colvin R de Silva’s house.

When 1970 United Front Government was established, many youth entered Parliament including Weerasinghe.

He had been close to poor. During social changes took place, he contributed a lot.

We extend our condolences to his relatives through the Speaker.

Gunaratne Weerakoon (UPFA): Weerasinghe was a giant who contributed towards changes made by the left movement.

He supported cinnamon cultivation in the area to reduce poverty. I express my condolences to his relatives.

Technology and Research Minister Tissa Vitarana: Today we recall a hero that joined Lanka Sama Samaja Party during his youth. He came forward to fulfill the wishes of ordinary people and gave leadership to their struggles.

He married the daughter of Colvin R de Silva and practised as a Senior Counsel. He contributed a lot for the development of the country.

By representing Balapitiya seat he developed facilities in schools in the area.

Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa said he will order to send copies of this motion to the relatives and the family members of Weerasinghe.

Water Supply and Drainage Minister and Chief Government Whip Dinesh Gunawardena: I present the condolence motion of ex-MP V Navaratnam to this House. He passed away in Montreal, Canada. He was an Attorney-at-Law. In 1961 he became the General Secretary of the Federal Party and was a close associate of S J V Chelvanayagam.He organized a march from Trincomalee to Jaffna to voice for the problems of the Tamils in 1956. In 1963 he entered Parliament receiving 10,000 votes. In 1965 he was reelected to Parliament. He was expelled from the Federal Party in 1968. He formed Tamil Arasu Kachchi Party as a result. He had five children and later settled in Canada. He expired in December 2006. I propose the condolence motion to be sent to his family members.

Mavai Senathirajah (TNA): He started the Tamil Arasu Kachchi Party. He was a very talented lawyer. He played a vital role in his party. As a young boy I have observed he was taking part at Parliament debates and speaking at various rallies.

He talked on behalf of the Tamil people. Chelvanayagam’s house was close to my house and I had the opportunity to hear and see the activities going on there. We saw how Navaratnam joined in them. Even being in Canada, he was very keen on Tamil people’s problems.

Chandra Kumar Murugesu (UPFA): Even though our political idealogies were different, I admired him a lot.

Even today, I respect him. Some member had the practice of criticising the Government always, but he did not do so. He was keen on winning the rights of the people.

Deputy Chairman of Committees Murugesu Chandrakumar takes the Chair.

S. Adeikalanathan (TNA): V Navaratnam’s thoughts and feelings are respected by us as members of TNA. Today our Party TNA is following his footpath.

Murugesu Chandrakumar (Deputy Chairman of Committees): I also join the condolence motion and instruct the General Secretary of Parliament to send the copies of the motion to the family members of V Navaratnam. Now we take up the condolence motion of ex-MP E Ratnasabahpathi.

Douglas Devananda (Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Development Minister): E Ratnasabahpathi passed away in 2006. He represented the people of Jaffna District.

Ratnasabahpathi always believed that the power of words are more powerful than the bullet. He guided his people and always fought for the rights of Tamil people.

He respected all the communities alike.

When the struggle for the rights of the Tamil people became a terrorism of single person Ratnasabahpathi worked in the opposite way.

He maintained that the war will bring only the destruction to the Tamil people and stated the only way for peace was democracy.

Mavei Senadhirajah (TNA): He was born in Inuvil area in Jaffna and was a good orator. He had left ideas and later established EROS.

I knew him and his family very well. His father was a school principal.

Murugesu Chandrakumar, (Deputy Chairman of Committees): I instruct the General Secretary of the Parliament to send copies of the condolence motion to the family members of E Ratnasabahpathi. Now the condolence motion of ex-MP H Chandraman de Silva is taken up

R Yogarajan takes the Chair.

Maithripala Sirisena (Health Minister):

I move the condolence motion of ex Kandy Parliamentarian H Chandraman de Silva. He was born in 1949 in Gampola area. He received his primary education from Andrew’s College. He joined his family business when he grew up and held the post of Secretary of the Gampola UNP Youth Association for nearly 20 years. He later became a Member of Parliament in 1988 through the list. In 1989 he was elected to the Parliament from the Kandy District. He married Anula de Silva and had four children. He also represented Sri Lanka in an international conference in Barbados.

He passed away at the age of 58 on January 20, 2007.

Ranjith Madduma Bandara (UNP): Chandraman de Silva joined politics from the UNP and rendered a great service to the party for its success. He entered Parliament in 1988 from the UNP list and later elected to the Parliament in 1989 from the Kandy District. He raised his voice to solve problems in the Gampola area.

Murugesu Chandrakumar (Deputy Chairman of Committees):

I instruct the Secretary General of Parliament to send copies of the condolence motion to the family members of H Chandraman de Silva.

The Parliament was adjourned until October 5.


Election Commission will be established

President Mahinda Rajapaksa will establish the Election Commission, once the members were appointed to Parliamentary Council according to the 18th Amendment to the Constitution, said Water Supply and Drainage Minister Dinesh Gunawardena at Parliament yesterday.

He said that the Election Commission can be established only after the appointment of Parliamentary Council.

He mentioned that the Elections Commissioner has retired from his post on January 28, 2002. He rejected the fact that there was a human rights violation in retaining the Election Commissioner in his post further. According to a letter of Presidential Secretariat the Elections Commissioner was re-appointed to the post from January 29, 2002 onwards.

The Minister was replying to a question raised by UNP MP Dayasiri Jayasekera.


Speaker defends MP’s privileges

Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa told Parliament yesterday that he will take action against anyone who violates MP Sarath Fonseka’s privileges by preventing him from attending Parliamentary Sessions.

The Speaker made these remarks in response to questions raised by Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe, UNP MP Dayasiri Jayasekera and DNA MP Vijitha Herath with regard to preventing Fonseka from Parliament proceedings.


[ At adjournment]

Malaria will be eliminated by 2014

Deputy Health Minister Mahinda Amaraweera told Parliament yesterday that the Health Ministry is taking measures to control the Tsunami-fly menace in Matara District while controlling the Dengue and Malaria in the country.

He was responding to an adjournment motion moved by UNP MP Buddhika Pathirana. Amaraweera said that the Health Ministry has taken measures to control this menace. This fly is identified as “minjans”. It is 3mm to 4mm long and black.

The Health Ministry expects to eliminate Malaria from the country by 2014. We imported BTI bacteria from Cuba. It will be further investigated and carefully analyzed by the MRI to check whether it would cause any damage to the environment.

After completion of investigations, we will utilize it to curb the Dengue.

Buddhika Pathirana (UNP): I think the House should pay attention to the tsunami flies plague in the Matara District.

It is reported that these flies are abundant in Rakwana area in Ratnapura as well.

In Matara District it has become a serious menace. It has spresd to Akuressa, Pitabeddara, Veherahena, Kotapola and Deniyaya etc.

Ranjith Madduma Bandara (UNP): This menace will affect public health and children’s education.

 

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