Poor response to President’s call to nominate reps for PSC

Key player TNA’s participation subject to Govt. fulfilling pledges made at bilateral talks
By Chandani Kirinde

President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s decision to call a meeting of all political party representatives to persuade them to nominate members for the proposed Parliamentary Select committee (PSC) to find a solution to the national problem has not been received with much enthusiasm by Opposition political parties including the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), a key player in any such process.

The President told a group of Editors he met last Monday that he has decided to hold a meeting with party representatives in order to kick start the PSC process, which should decide on a solution for the problems faced by different communities in the country.

TNA National List MP M.A. Sumanthiran said his Party’s participation in any such process would be only after the Government fulfils its side of the pledges made during the bilateral talks held between the two sides, which is, that the consensus arrived at the conclusion of these meetings, be placed before the proposed PSC.

Mr Sumanthiran reiterated that the nomination of its members to the PSC must “await substantial consensus being reached at the bilateral talks”, as was agreed during the last round of talks held between the two sides in early December.

The TNA MP added that there was a great deal of inconsistency in the public statements made by the Government with how it hopes to move forward on the issue. “The Government must act more responsibly and first honour the agreement we have reached,’ he added.

Chief Opposition Whip UNP MP John Amaratunga said that its decision to appoint members to the PSC and its participation in an APC, still hangs in the balance. “The TNA, the main player in the process, has refused to nominate members, so, without their participation, the process will be futile,” he said.
The JVP too has dismissed the APC move, saying that it’s a time-buying exercise, and not a genuine effort to find a solution to the country’s problem.

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