Retain Executive Presidency - Samarasinghe

The Executive Presidency should be retained for the country’s defence and to protect its unitary status, Ports and Shipping Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said in Parliament yesterday.

He also said that the powers of the governors’ who are representatives of the President should not be reduced too. “The Northern Province Chief Minister has refused to hoist the National Flag at a ceremony at a school in the North,” Minister Samarasinghe said.

“That is wrong. We should not give all the powers to Parliament, because the heads in the House can be changed.”

Minister Samarasinghe was speaking during the Committee Stage debate on the budget proposal for the fiscal year 2018, under 24 Financial Heads including the President, Prime Minister, Supreme Court Judges and Cabinet of Ministers which was taken up in Parliament yesterday.

“The inflation rate cannot be reduced because we have given a salary increase. In the past, we gave a Rs 10,000 salary increase to the public,” Minister Samarasinghe said.

“President Maithripala Sirisena is the only President in the country’s history who dared to curtail his own powers,” the Minister said.

He said that the President has neither betrayed the War Heroes nor has he allowed racism to spread.

Minister Samarasinghe added that some Opposition members charged that the President had attempted to conceal the Treasury Bond issue. He also added that finally they have been proved wrong. The Commission has been open to the media.

“President Sirisena has instructed that the report be submitted before December 8,” Minister Samarasinghe added.



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