"CBK has violated JJ's rights"

The Premier added that though Minister Jayawardene opted to be a politician to serve the people he is recognised as a distinguished medical practitioner.

"As a medical practitioner he uses the electronic and print media comprehensively to educate the people of the entire country on good health practices. He has also pioneered the Parliamentary Lobby for Child Rights in Sri Lanka. In all such efforts he has initiated action-oriented programmes going beyond caste, creed, race and politics. In order to make him continue the work that he has started specially in the North and East of the country, I have entrusted him with the portfolio of rehabilitation, resettlement and refugees"

Premier congratulates Prof. JJ
Congratulating Minister Jayalath Jayawardene on being awarded an honorary Emeritus Professorship by the Irish International University (IIU) Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe states that inspite of personal threats to his life the minister reached the needy people in the North and East.

" Under my guidance, even as a Member of Parliament in the Opposition, he travelled to the North and East in the thick of war. The goodwill that was established helped to open avenues for continued negotiations for peace" he said.

"In his chosen path, he has taken bold strides towards peace and reconciliation between the people in the North and South of Sri Lanka and had made pioneering efforts in the midst of numerous challenges in bringing the North and the South together. Accordingly, I should say he is recognised as a harbinger of peace who paved the way for greater understanding and fellowship between different ethnic groups in the country" he said.

The UN Human Rights Committee which inquired into a complaint made by Dr.

Jayalath Jayawardena on allegations made against him linking him with the LTTE, has concluded that President Chandrika Kumaratunga has violated his civil and political rights and recommended remedial action.

The Committee in a report released recently after hearing submissions by both parties involved, upheld that Dr. Jayawardena's civil and political rights have been violated under the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights (CCPR).

Submitting its views the Committee held that Dr. Jayawardena was entitled to an 'appropriate remedy' and called on the 'state party' (the President) to submit information about the measures taken to implement its views within 90 days.

Dr. Jayawardena filed a complaint with the CCPR in February 2000 alleging that President Kumaratunga made blatant accusations against him publicly since 1998 linking him up with the LTTE to which wide publicity was given through the state media. He complained that allegations by the President over state owned media, put his life at risk while also causing psychological pain to his family.

s life despite impending threats and several requests made to her by the international organisations and local authorities to provide him with sufficient security in her capacity as the Defence Minister. Complaints made to the police to investigate into death threats also fell on deaf ears, Dr. Jayawardena alleged.

According to Dr. Jayawardena, he approached the UN Human Rights Committee, because he had exhausted all domestic remedies and was incapable of taking legal action against the President because she enjoyed Presidential immunity.

However, the President, referred to as the 'state party' making submissions to the Committee refuted claims by Dr. Jayawardena that he did not avail of domestic remedies.

The state party questioned as to why Dr. Jayawardena did not institute legal action against the media organisations, restraining it from publishing or broadcasting/televising material that infringed his rights.

The fact that he received death threats and was being followed by unidentified persons was also denied on the grounds that no complaints were made to that effect.
Dr. Jayawardena had presented to the Committee proof of complaints made to the police regarding the death threats and held that his complaint to the UN Human Rights Committee did not relate to the media or the police, but to the allegations made by the President. He stressed that the President herself should be accountable for the statements made against him.

Accordingly, the committee concluded that the President was responsible for violating his right to security and failure to investigate complaints made in respect of death threats.

The Committee had also requested the state party to publish the views expressed in the report.

Beira Lake soon a leisure centre
With the restoration of the South West Lake near the Gangaramaya Temple being almost completed under the Beira Lake Restoration Project, the Urban Development Authority is soon to call for private sector investment to develop the area into a fun park for leisure and recreational activities.

The UDA has already negotiated with several private companies and is hoping to call for private sector investment to implement its business plan. Fifteen sites have been identified for development under the business plan. Private sector participation is also sought in environment improvement activities in terms of sponsorship.

The UDA would make available about 54 acres of land for private sector investment under its business plan. The income thus generated is to be invested in lake restoration.

The restoration of the South West Lake-the first to be restored under the Beira Lake Restoration Project-is expected to be completed by the end of this year, Planning Assistant of the UDA Project Management Division, E.A.C. Priyashantha said.

Accordingly, the South West Lake will have boat terminals, restaurants with parking facilities, linear parks and an island with a restaurant and a park for leisure activities.
A shopping arcade is also to be built at one end of Sir James Peiris Mawatha where it joins Perahera Mawatha. However, this project has been temporarily suspended due to the inability to relocate ongoing activities in the area.

Work on the East Lake on D.R. Wijewardene Mawatha has already begun according to Mr. Priyashantha, who said dredging of the lake has now started. The UDA has also proposed the construction of a new road connecting Galle Road with Pettah over the East Lake. Funds for this project are expected from foreign sources or private investors.

The restoration of the Beira Lake is taking place in two phases. Phase I involves reduction of pollution and Phase II involves in-lake restoration, shoreline beautification, lake catchment development and provision of recreational facilities. On completion of the project, a significant boost to the economic development of the city is anticipated.

Meanwhile, the UDA has also identified locations for relocating settlements around the Beira Lake. All low income settlements bordering the lake are being relocated to make available land to private sector investors for a variety of purposes such as hotels, restaurants, parks and other recreational facilities.

At least 800 families have been identified living around the Beira Lake while a few new unauthorised structures are now coming up with their occupants hoping to obtaining alternate premises when families are relocated.

Sinhala MPs agitate against 19th Amendment
By Shelani Perera
The Sinhala MPs Group are to carry out an agitational campaign requesting Government and Opposition MPs to vote against the proposed 19th Amendment when Parliament commences sittings and debates it in the second week of October.
The Group is due to meet this week to finalise its campaign strategy. The MPs are planning to explain to parliamentarians the consequences that would flow if the amendment is passed in Parliament.

Convenor of the Sinhala MPs group MEP Leader Dinesh Gunawardena told The Sunday Times that they will explain to the MPs the Government's motive for presenting the amendment.

"The People's Alliance has already opposed it but we will also meet the MPs and explain to them why they should not vote for the amendment. We will also carry out the agitational campaign outside Parliament", he said.

Meanwhile when the 19th Amendment was being tabled in Parliament on Thursday, members of Sinhala organisations including the Jathika Sangha Sammelanaya delivered leaflets to Opposition MPs calling on them to vote against the amendment.
The leaflet stated that the amendment would divide the country.

The amendment is aimed at setting up the interim administration which would mean that the LTTE is to take over the administration of the North and East, it said.

The leaflet had also highlighted the fact that the amendment which is aimed at stripping the powers of the President may even lead to the removal of the President facilitating the setting up of the interim administration.

The Sinhala MPs' group has called on the Opposition to join together to prevent the Government getting a 2/3rds majority to pass the amendment.

The MPs have been asked not to be bought over by the Government and not to betray the country by voting for the amendment.

Consider opinions of smaller groups in peace talks urges Jaffna MC
By S.S. Selvanayagam
The Jaffna Municipal Council on Wednesday adopted a resolution to urge the international community to consider the views of the splinter Tamil parties in talks to resolve the North-East crisis, an official source said.

The resolution was moved by councillor T. Subathiran of the EPRLF (Varathan faction). The meeting was chaired by Mayor Sellan Kandhayan who represents the TULF, one of the constituent parties of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) which accepts the LTTE as the sole representative of the Tamils in the North-East, the source added.

The resolution was moved with the intention of ensuring that the views of all sections of the people in the North-East, including the Muslims, are reflected in future peace talks.

The composition of the councillors in the Jaffna Municipal Council is as follows: TULF - 9; EPDP - 6; PLOTE - 6; and EPRLF (Varathan faction) - 2. The EPDP, PLOTE and EPRLF (Varathan faction) do not consider the LTTE as the sole representative of the Tamils in the North-East.

Councillor T. Subathiran also moved another resolution condemning the alleged forcible taxation of the general public by the LTTE which was adopted by a majority vote, the source said.

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