The Sunday Leader

Sri Lanka Needs To Deliver On Its Promises

As President Mahinda Rajapaksa participated in the swearing-in ceremony of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Rajapaksa had given certain assurances and welcomed the views of the new Indian Premier.  Modi had in depth talks with Rajapaksa on expediting “the process of national reconciliation in a manner that meets the aspirations of the Tamil community for a life of equality, justice, peace and dignity in a united Sri Lanka” – and Rajapaksa had assured Modi that he would keep his promises.  

However, some Sri Lankan politicians have expressed doubts about Mahinda Rajapaksa honouring his promises, as he has been unable to implement the 13th Amendment and 13+, which many see as an important factor in addressing the national issue.


I Don’t Think He Can Go Back On His - Hasan Ali General Secretary, Sri Lanka Muslim Congress 

I can’t predict what is on the President’s mind, but the only way peace can be brought to this country is by fully implementing the 13th Amendment.

Until then the minority communities will never ever be satisfied. The President had previously promised the international community that he would implement 13+. So he should keep his word as this is not something new.

This is a promise he has made before. The current implementation of the 13th Amendment is far below our expectations. In its present form, the 13th Amendment is basically non existent. The minority communities in this country have been expecting more.

The international community also helped this country to eradicate terrorism, thinking that once the war is over there will be reconciliation and other peace building measures, but that has not been the case.

The next stage should be to bring peace to the minds of the people, but it is not happening. Instead they are trying to meddle with the system. Since he has given this promise before, I don’t think he can go back on his word.

Politics Interferes In Everything In Sri Lanka -
Asad Sally 
Leader, Muslim Tamil National Alliance

On the day of his swearing-in, Premier Narendra Modi was very clear that the promises given to Manmohan Singh need to be fulfilled with immediate effect. whatever President Rajapaksa had promised Ban Ki-moon and the Indian government has to be fulfilled.

I have been saying that for the last one and half years now. What they want is for the Sri Lankan government to implement 13 Plus – since that is what President Rajapaksa promised India. So he has to deliver on that promise.

It is good that the Chief Minister of the Northern Province C.V Wigneswaran did not join President Rajapaksa to go to the swearing in ceremony of Modi. Wigneswaran was smart to refuse the invitation.

The Indian government can change but their policies and bureaucracy does not change. On the contrary, when the Sri Lankan government changes the policies change.

At present, politics interferes in everything in Sri Lanka. At the swearing-in ceremony, President Rajapaksa discussed the progress he had made on the LLRC whereas in the actual context there is no progress.


It Is Unlikely That Anything Substantial Will Be Done
– Dr. Vickramabahu Karunaratne Leader, Nawa Sama Samaja Party (NSSP)

The President has been promising so many people and leaders that he will fully implement the 13th Amendment.

He will probably do something related to the LLRC and then only do some construction, build some bridges or donate money to someone for social welfare to make people forget the real issue – but he will not take any serious steps to address the issues of the Tamil people and will not consider any serious political reform to address the national issue.

He has been challenged by Wimal Weerawansa and Champika Ranawaka and there are claims that President Rajapaksa has made agreements with the International Monitory Fund (IMF) and is following P.B. Jayasundera.

In addition to that they have demanded that the President should not do anything to violate the Constitution and the unitary nature of the Constitution. So then their pressure is also there. It is unlikely that anything substantial will be done to satisfy Tamil expectations.

Modi Has Surprised The Government
– Mano Ganesan Leader of the Democratic People’s Front

When considering history, we are not certain that the President will keep his promise to Modi.

The Presidential delegation went to New Delhi with great hopes, believing that Modi would not raise issues about the 13th Amendment.

Modi had surprised the government by bringing up this issue.

In the report issued by the Foreign Secretary of India, Modi had brought up the issue of reconciliation in the country; as well as equality, dignity, and the aspirations of and justice for the Tamil people.

Modi has made it clear that these objectives can only be achieved by implementing the 13th Amendment.

The Sri Lanka Government has tried to hide what Modi spoke about during the visit, saying that the talks were about cooperation between SAARC countries.


Nothing is being done -
Suresh Premachandran 
MP, Tamil National Alliance

We hear from the media that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had asked President Mahinda Rajapaksa to promise to implement certain things and the President had agreed.

Previously also President Mahinda Rajapaksa had promised India that he would implement the 13th Amendment and go beyond that to implement 13 Plus and certain other things as well – but nothing is being done.

Implementing the 13th Amendment involves granting powers to the Provincial Councils to function on their own. Therefore we do not know how the government expects to keep its promises as they have been reluctant to do so in the past.

6 Comments for “Sri Lanka Needs To Deliver On Its Promises”

  1. We all want permanent and long lasting peace. We all want to live in united Srilanka. There is no problem with Sinhala and Tamil people. The problems are created time and time again by our politicians for their own benefit. If Srilanka wants to prosper and do very well the President has to implement the 13th amendment to the constitution without further delay. Our President promised this many times and I wonder why he is keep on denying. There is no point in telling the world that this has to be done thorough PSC. President has made lot of decision without referring to parliament. If that is the case what is the problem in implementing the 13th amendment.


  3. Fernando

    Who, which government, which prime minister or any other ministers has, indians or SL have fulfilled promises. You tamil, mmuslim ministers have[you too ever fulfilled the promises you made to your tamils and muslims during election campaigns? Then what the hell you want that SL president must fulfill the promise to implement the 13th?

  4. gamarala

    Remaining president for as long as possible is the only aim of Mahinda Ralapakse.
    Giving their rights to tamils in the north,will decrease the vote-bank of the Sinhala Buddhist nationalists.He has to be careful.

  5. karolis

    Do not give Land powers and Police powers to North and East. This is not any body’s country to promise Tamils to give them what they want..

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