Parties call for abolition of presidential government

[TamilNet, Monday, 12 July 1999, 23:01 GMT]
Four political parties the JVP, MEP, NSSP and the MULF have planned to hold a fast in front of the Fort Station in Colombo on Friday to protest at the continuation of the Presidential system of government by the PA coalition government.

Similar protests have also been planned in other districts. Sources said that protests will be held in the district of Galle on July 16, in Kandy on July 19 and in Kurunegala on July 20.

The main opposition party, the UNP said that it would also hold a protest on July 15.

Following independence from Britain in 1946 Ceylon was governed through a "Westminster style" parliament.

The system lasted until 1978 when the newly elected UNP government introduced a constitution that provided for executive presidential government with a cabinet of ministers responsible to parliament.

Opposition parties argued that the constitution concentrated power in the hands of the President and the present government won the 1994 election on a mandate that included abolition of the executive presidency.


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