1st October 2000
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Why us? 

With 9 days to go for the elections we continue our series on what each party has to offer


We cannot afford political instability

Dr. Jayampathi WickremaratneOn December 21, 1999, the people of Sri Lanka gave a clear mandate to President Chandrika Kumaratunga to govern the country for another six years. She now needs a Parliament supportive of her policies.

The main problem facing the nation is the ethnic conflict. As a result of this conflict, a large amount of money and resources, which could have been used for development, is spent on the war. While taking military action against the LTTE, the PA believes that the final solution to the conflict is a political one. We firmly believe that all communities should have their rightful share of political power. All communities need to be accommodated in decision making. 

When decision making is done at the centre and the periphery, the people at the periphery get an opportunity to make decisions that affect them directly. While devolving power, it is important to have arrangements for power sharing at the centre as well. A political solution must be attractive enough to draw the Tamil people away from the forces of separation.

"The PA has proved to the country that it is committed to finding a political solution to the ethnic conflict. The UNP's record in this regard is dismal. For the past six years, it has been dragging its feet. Finally it cried off at the last moment and a historic opportunity for a southern consensus was denied.

The other important issue is democracy and human rights. The human rights situation in the country has tremendously improved during the past six years compared to the situation between 1977 and 1994. 

The commitment of the PA to human rights was seen in the Chapter on Fundamental Rights in the Constitution Bill. The right to life, which was omitted from the 1978 Constitution, was brought back. The scope of civil and political rights was expanded and several new rights brought in. A remarkable feature is the inclusion of social and economic rights, women's rights and children's rights as enforceable fundamental rights.

Sri Lanka cannot afford political instability at this crucial juncture. A confrontation between the President and Parliament would be disastrous and will only strengthen the forces of separatism. This should be avoided.

Dr. Jayampathi Wickramaratne – PA National List Nominee

Liberal Party

Sense of disillusionment and disappointment

Javid YusufThe general feeling among people is that both major parties have not done their bit for the country. There is a sense of disillusionment and disappointment. The alternatives are extreme parties.

We offer a more moderate set of policies. Even if we have a few members in Parliament, we can act as a sobering influence on any government in power. Basically, we stand for a society where people get justice in whatever field- social, economic, political etc.

One of the major problems in the country is that State institutions are too powerful and do not act fairly in their dealings with the people. We want to reduce the power of State institutions and depoliticise government as a whole. 

We believe there is a lot of goodwill between members of all communities. If that goodwill is fostered all communities can live in harmony with each other. We also believe there must be a political solution to the ethnic problem. 

If we are elected to Parliament, we will support whichever government, comes into power, on issues that help the people of the country. We will oppose the government on issues that go against the people. Our main aim is to work for the good of the people and the country.

Javid Yusuf – Attorney -at-Law, Candidate for Colombo District under the Liberal Party


We will be a dynamic force-Vasu

We expect the people to vote against the policies of this Government, the UNP, and particularly against Sinhala chauvinism. 

The present state of the economy, which adversely affects a large section of the people should compel them to review the economic strategies that have been at work for the past 22 years. We have proposed an economy with State intervention and State direction in both marketing and distribution, regulating essential items of food and other requirements. We propose that the Government be directly responsible in guaranteeing reasonable prices.

We have also proposed that normalcy be restored in the North-East as a precondition for discussions with all parties concerned. 

We will also increase expenditure in areas of health and education to proportions that prevailed 20 years ago.

If elected to Parliament, we will act as a catalyst in intervening as a dynamic force in the affairs of Parliament to put pressure on the Government whoever it be, in the larger interest of the country and the people.

We will bring before the country the inner mechanism of present policies of Government and a probable future Government, which will be a combination of UNP and PA. We intend to mobilise the people against it. We will not join any side but act as a catalyst.

Vasudeva Nanayakkara-candidate for Ratnapura district


We have a proven track record of success

Tilak MarapanaThe UNP is the only party that has a proven track record of having developed the country, whilst at the same time looked after the poor. It is the UNP who introduced the Free Economy and in 1977 took the people from an era of shortages and starvation and made life better for them.

We did the collosal Mahaweli Project, the Free trade Zones, the Million Houses Programme, the Mahapola, Garment Factories and so on.

All the infrastructure development one sees today is what has either been done by the UNP or planned and finance obtained by the UNP.

As for the less affluent, it is the UNP that introduced free education, free health, free school books, free uniforms, Mahapola Scholarships, Janasaviya etc. We have done a lot though we don't brag about it.

Our promises for the future are therefore not empty words. We have already formulated our future Development Plans. Our economic policy is to increase productivity, develop effective distribution systems and create new income generating opportunities.

We will harness the co-operation of the private sector and attract foreign capital. Our aim is to infuse modern technology, improve human skills and equip the populace to cope with the global trends of the 21st Century. 

The UNP will set up five Economic Development Commissions each to promote Industry, Agriculture, Trade and Tourism in the five Regions to be demarcated in the country.

A team of disciplined and competent professionals will to manage and monitor the Development Plans so as to rapidly increase production and create more jobs.

The UNP is also committed to find a political solution to the ethnic problem by a consensus reached through broad based discussion. 

The UNP in Government has always upheld the Rule of Law and enhanced the quality of life.

Today, there is a complete breakdown of Law and Order. Government institutions, including the Police, are highly politicised. Public servants are harassed by political interference. 

As a result there is no proper management and administration, the decision makers remaining passive and silent due to fear. The UNP is committed to put this right. Our Leader Ranil believes in honesty, hard work and discipline.

Tilak Marapana – President's Counsel, UNP National List Nominee

Independent Group 3

We must all meet the challenge to freedom 

Srimani AthulathmudaliI am contesting Colombo District as Independent Group 3, under the fish symbol.
Despite the many difficulties I have faced since I entered politics, I have worked with determination to convey the principles by which I work. I have not swayed from my beliefs for political gain.
In the future I will urge all political parties to meet the challenge to freedom.
-Urge for greater cooperation and understanding between our politicians and intellectuals.
-Urge for the promotion of an outward looking economy to meet the competition in the world market.
-Urge for long term solution to agriculture and fisheries problems.
-Urge for a Government which is honest, dedicated and efficient and one that is committed solely to the welfare of the public.

Independent Group 3 –Colombo District
Srimani Athulathmudali


The people are with us

Douglas DevanandaThe people of Jaffna think they should vote for the EPDP because its policies and approaches are sound. 

If elected, we will support the party in power and the party that is prepared to solve the important issues.We feel that the PA Government is doing that. Our manifesto consists of our political approach to find a solution to the ethnic problem and day to day issues of the Tamil-speaking people. We will continue working in Parliament according to our Manifesto. 

For the past 10 years, we have been working with the people and they are with us. 

Douglas Devananda – Candidate for Jaffna under the EPDP

DPL pressure to prevent EPDP hegemony

By Chris Kamalendran
The TULF yesterday sought intervention of diplomatic missions to bring pressure on the Sri Lankan government to take action against the EPDP which is allegedly flouting election regulations in the Northern Province.

TULF's Senior Vice President V.Anandasangari in a letter addressed to all diplomatic missions said action should be taken immediately to prevent the EPDP dominating the Kayts and Delft islands adding that no other political party or group had access to the islands.

He claimed that civilians in the two islands were being harassed and deprived of exercising their democratic rights.

The letter said all political parties and groups trying to visit the Kayts island had been threatened and turned away by the EPDP.

EPDP leader Douglas Devananda speaking earlier to The Sunday Times, denied the allegations and said 'anybody is free to visit the islands of Jaffna'.

However, other Tamil parties have also confirmed that they were not allowed into the islands and thereby deprived of carrying out their campaigns.

Mr. Anandasangari said in his letter 'There is no police, army or navy in Delft island. Can't the people be liberated from the EPDP by taking over the island from them and leaving it in the hands of the navy? Further, the government should be requested to send as many observers as possible from the various monitoring teams that have arrived or are due to arrive shortly'.

Who's hitting the UNP?

Police have made little headway in probing the attacks on UNP frontliner Anura Bandaranaike's office in Attanagalle and Rajitha Senaratne's office in Kalutara.

Nittambuwa Chief Inspector Vijitha de Coomasaru said the probe was continuing but no suspects had been arrested. 

Mr. Bandaranaike said it was surprising how the attack took place when the area was under special security for the Horagolla commemoration ceremony on Tuesday.

In Kalutara on Friday UNP candidate Dr. Senarhna's office was allegedly set on fire by an armed gang dressed in camouflage uniforms and carrying Uzi machine guns.

Luxury vehicles with bogus number plates

By Nilika de Silva
While the LTTE threat to Colombo and the suburbs is always present and the movement of suspicious people and vehicles has to be continually monitored, an Intercooler Turbo with a fraudulent number plate was seized at Maradana on Wednesday by the Traffic Police. 

The Intercooler with tinted glass windows is the third such vehicle seized in the Western Province. The vehicle which belonged to a businessman in Kiribath-goda had a blue garland hanging inside the windscreen. 

The Intercooler was spotted by S.I. Janaka Senadheera of the Traffic Police, when he was off duty. 

However, the suspicion of the officer was aroused as the vehicle was carrying the number plate of a jeep. The officer then checked with the RMV and found that the misuse of a registration number had occurred, which led him to seize the vehicle. 

The number sported on the Intercooler Turbo, 64-3689, had originally been allocated to a jeep registered in 1978. The number of the jeep had been changed to 64- when it was converted to run on diesel. 

The method followed by the fraudsters is to use the number of another vehicle on the new vehicle which has been assembled in the country and not registered with the Registrar of Motor Vehicles. 

The other two vehicles seized by the Traffic Police and handed over to the Customs were a Pajero and a Nissan Safari luxury jeep. 

The Pajero was seized on August 8 in the Wattala police area while the Nissan Safari luxury jeep was seized on August 10 in the Ja-ela police area. 

The Safari luxury jeep had the chassis number of an old petrol jeep taken from the police vehicle auction, 32-1024 carved on to it, SI Senadheera said. The Pajero, Turbo Wagon 41-1716, had an Isuzu lorry number. 

Traffic Police sources emphasised the dangers involved in the use of fraudulent number plates by vehicle owners. 

Marking day of world children

The management of Hapugastenne Estate, Maskeliya has arranged a programme today to mark the World Children's Day.

The programme to be held at Hapugastenne Tamil Vidayalam will include dance items and speech and drama competitions. 

No liquor day

All liquor shops will be closed on Tuesday in view of World Temperance Day, a statement from the Excise Commissioner's Department said yesterday.

Police arm being twisted - Keheliya

The UNP has charged an influential PA candidate in the Kandy district has named a number of police personnel to be stationed in particular polling booths suggested by him at the parliamentary elections. The UNP's chief candidate Keheliya Rambukwella said the candidate had listed out 35 policemen and sent the list through his co-ordinating secretary to the police. Mr. Rambukwella said they were strongly protesting against the move and they had found that of the 35 policemen, 20 were from the traffic branch in Kandy. The co-ordinating secretary who had allegedly sent the names to the police was not available for comment.
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