'Mamanithan' award for Ponnambalam
[TamilNet, Saturday, 08 January 2000, 12:27 GMT]
Mr. Kumar Ponnambalam, the assassinated Tamil political leader, has been bestowed with the Most Eminent Person (Mamanithan) award by the Liberation Tigers' leadership, the organisation said in a statement from its London offices Saturday.
The LTTE said the award was for Mr. Ponnambalam's "dedicated patriotism and for his outstanding contribution to the cause of Tamil liberation".
"Conferring this highest national award for extra-ordinary services on Mr. Ponnambalam, the LTTE leader Mr. Pirapaharan praised him as a great patriot who courageously championed the freedom of the Tamil nation," the LTTE said.
In a special statement issued Friday Mr. Pirapaharan categorised Mr. Ponnambalam as "a revolutionary political leader who fought for human justice with sincere determination and commitment," the LTTE said.
Living in the heart of the Sri Lanka capital and disregarding the dangers that threatened his life, he challenged the evils of Sinhala chauvinism, the LTTE leader had observed.
"Mr. Ponnambalam was an outstanding patriot who deeply loved his Tamil homeland. He supported the formation of an independent Tamil state based on the right to self-determination of the Tamil people. He firmly believed in the armed revolutionary struggle as the authentic political mode for the emancipation of the Tamils," the LTTE statement quoted Mr Pirapaharan as saying.
"Therefore, he openly and courageously supported the LTTE and its political ideology. He defended the cause of our liberation movement in the international arena. His courage, dedication and the deep commitment with which he contributed to the cause of freedom is highly commendable," Mr. Pirapaharan had declared.