2ND LEAD

Pillaiyan elected Chairman of CM Forum, decides not to seek police powers

[TamilNet, Thursday, 05 June 2008, 21:03 GMT]
Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan, alias Pillaiyan, has been elected Chairman of the Chief Ministers' Forum, which decided not to press for police powers to the provincial council but sought powers pertaining to land and transport. The Forum also decided to take legal action to achieve this.

Eight chief ministers including Pillaiyan in the capacity of Chief Minister of the eastern provincial council participated in the conference. Pillayan was made the chairman at the twenty fourth annual conference of the forum held on May 31 in Badulla. He is to hold the chairman post until the 25th conference of the Chief Minister's Forum that is scheduled to be held in Batticaloa after five months.

Gamini Wijayamuni Soyza, Uva Provincial Chief Minister presided.

Pillaiyan speaking at the conference said lasting solution to the Tamil national question could be found only by devolving powers to provinces under the 13th amendment of the Constitution.

"Provincial Council system was introduced twenty years ago to find political solution to the Tamil speaking people through devolving powers. It was unfortunate that the sole purpose of the provincial council system to find political solution to the Tamil question had not been found even after twenty years. However, the people of eastern province today have been able to enjoy the fruits of the PC system because of the courageous and farsightedness of President Mahinda Rajapakse. But the people of the north are still not given the opportunity to enjoy the PC powers," Pillaiyan said.

Several chief ministers said the PC system is being given more importance today than earlier. Chief Minister Berty Premalal Dissanayake, (North Central Province), Sarath Ekanayake (Central), Mahipala Heart (Sabragamuwa), Reginald Cooray (Western Provincial Council) and Shan Wijelal (Southern Provincial Council) participated.


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