TNA rejects JVP's claimed right to nominate CC member
[TamilNet, Monday, 13 March 2006, 00:07 GMT]
As the dispute among the 'minority parties,' Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) and Tamil National Alliance (TNA) in selecting the sixth member of the Constitutional Council continue to stymie CC from functioning, the Speaker Mr.W.M.J.Lokkubandara has asked the Leader of the House, Mr Sripala de Silva, to speak to the leaders of the three parties to resolve the matter urgently, parliamentary sources said.
The JVP has already nominated Professor Upali Jayasekara of the Sabaragamuwa University to the CC claiming that it has the right to choose the nominee representing minority parties. The JVP has 39 parliamentarians.
But Mr. R. Sampanthan, TNA leader argues that the JVP could not be considered a separate minority party as its parliamentarians were elected on the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) ticket. Hence the TNA, JHU, Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) have the right to nominate a member to represent the minority parties, Sampanthan says.
The CC was established under the Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution. The Speaker is the Chairman of the Constitutional Council, which is the sole authority for constituting several independent commissions such as National Public Service Commission (NPSC), National Election Commission (NEC), National Police Service Commission (NPSC).
According to the 17th Amendment, the CC consists seven members, five are appointed by the President after nominated by the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition. The President appoints one member and minority parties select the other member.
All other members to the Constitutional Council have been appointed except the representative on behalf of the minority parties.