HAKEEM calls for revision of SJB constitution | Sunday Observer
Coalition must be fine-tuned to address : multiplicity of policies and programs :

HAKEEM calls for revision of SJB constitution

23 August, 2020

SLMC leader Rauff Hakeem called for the revision of the Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) constitution which he said was drafted hurriedly before the parliamentary election on August 5.

He said that this has already been taken up with the SJB leadership.“The constitution of the coalition must be fine-tuned to address the multiplicity of policies and programs of all parties that there might be a unified vision for the country, taking into consideration the views of both the majority and the minority,” the SLMC leader told the Sunday Observer.

He said that the coalition must have a proper leadership council so that the decisions taken will be collective and by consensus while these decisions must be practical.

We are a constituent of the SJB, therefore, we have a pivotal role in the coalition, he added.

In the past, minority parties such as the SLMC were always invited to join the winning party to ensure the majority in Parliament. However, this time the SLPP-led coalition won a landslide victory and secured a two-thirds without the help of minority parties.

The national list nomination has also become a contentious issue between the SJB leadership and the SLMC. “ We can’t say it is settled. There are misgivings about the national list nominees of the SJB,” Hakeem said when asked if the matter has been settled by now.

“Promises are promises, they just can’t be forgotten, but it has to be made good some way or the other,” he said adding that the party members will continue to discuss that matter with the SJB leadership.

According to the Memorandum of Understanding signed with the SLMC, the party had been assured one national list slot by the SJB. However, when the list was finalised Ranjith Madduma Bandara, Tissa Attanayake, Harin Fernando, Imthiaz Bakeer Markar, Eran Wickremaratne, Mayantha Dissanayake and Diana Gamage were appointed to Parliament under the list.

The rationale of dividing the national seats had been, according to SJB General Secretary Maddumabandara, either all three minority parties in the coalition should get a seat each or else no one should be considered.