War ends but ethnic problem continues, witness tells LLRC

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 29 March 2011, 02:58 GMT]
"The stand taken by extremist Sinhala elements that there is no ethnic problem in the country cannot be accepted any more, said a senior Attorney-at-Law F.M. Ammerul Anzar Mowlana, the additional national propaganda secretary of the National Congress, while giving evidence at the hearings of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) held at the auditorium of the in Kalmunai Tamil Division DS Secretariat Sunday, sources attending the hearing said. LLRC Chairman Chitta Ranjan de Silva presided over the sittings.

"The war has come to an end but the ethnic problem has not been solved. Ethnic problem has become intertwined in the country’s politics. Several thousands of valuable lives and million rupees worth of properties have been lost in the war. Those arrested during the war still remain in the detention centres. We cannot bring reconciliation while promoting “one country-one people." The majority community should abandon its hardened chauvinist positions to resolve festering ethnic problems. Failure to do so may lead to another major disaster for Sri Lanka, he said.

"The minority communities are not given their due place in the spheres of politics, education, economy and employment. Vacancies in minority dominant areas are being filled with members from the majority community. This situation should immediately change.

"Under the present constitution powers are concentrated in the Presidency. This has been against the fulfillment of the aspirations of minority communities. Provincial council system that has been described as “white elephant” has come under the direct control of the President who has been empowered to appoint Governor for each province thus imposing President’s rule.

"The fate of reports of several Presidential Commissions held in past should not be repeated to the LLRC report. The LLRC should take appropriate steps to implement its report, Mowlana said in his evidence.

 

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