Minority participation for the first time: Kiriella

Since the co-operation of the minority communities have been received for the Constitutional reform process for the first time in the country’s history, the government’s objective is to bring in a new Constitution which will enable people of all communities to think as Sri Lankans,” Higher Education and highways Minister Lakshman Kiriella said.

He said the minority communities were not involved when late Prime Minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike and late President J.R.Jayewardene introduced two new Constitutions. Since 70 percent of the population were Sinhala Buddhists and the balance 30 percent constituted minority communities, such Constitutions could not promote unity and harmony.

Addressing a meeting in Kandy, Kiriella said the country was driven towards a cruel war because the Constitution had been framed without taking the ideas and views of the minorities into consideration. “Today, a golden opportunity had dawned to introduce a new Constitution which would not give rise to communal disunity,” the Minister said.

He said what countries such as Singapore and Malaysia did after gaining independence was to frame a new Constitution in consultation and the agreement of minority communities. It was due to this reason that they were achieving rapid progress without any crisis situations,” Minister Kiriella said.

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