- Published on Sunday, 11 November 2012 01:08
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Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa invited the main opposition parties in Parliament to extend their co-operation to solve the problems confronted by over 20 million people of the country.
Presenting the Budget proposal for next year in Parliament, President invited the main opposition United national Party, the Tamil National Alliance and other parties to cooperate with the his government.
"I wish to extend a warm invitation to the Leader of the Opposition, Leader of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) to cooperate with us constructively to solve problems confronted by our people" said the President Concluding his two and half hour long budget speech amidst applause by the ruling coalition members
"That will be an effort which ensures greater self-respect than having to lobby foreign countries to interfere in our internal problems." Emphasized President Rajapaksa
The President who commands a two third majority in the legislature said that the Leader of the
Opposition, the Leader of the TNA and me (referring to President), are experienced enough in life and politics, to spearhead this task.
The Government has accorded highest priority towards poverty reduction and uplifting the lower income people. But he said this has become rough with the Parliament being dragged into a long process in passing the Bill to establish Divi Neguma Development Department.
This amply demonstrates that we still have not reached the mile post that permit us to rest as a nation free of risks. There will be more political, economic and natural Tsunamis.
They will remain to be unpredictable. Yet, our resolutions to alleviate poverty and uplift the living environment of the poor remain an un compromised goal. Let’s commit to create a poverty free Sri Lanka by 2015. Appealed Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa justifying his call to opposition party leaders to co-operate with him to solve the problems faced by the people of Sri Lanka.
The concluding remarks made by the President in Parliament last Thursday is as follows
Members of this Parliament, both in the Opposition and in Government have demonstrated that we can work together in the national interest. With the maturity gained through longstanding political experiences, influenced by traditional rural norms and nurtured by family values, you gave the leadership to this august Parliament to host the Commonwealth
Parliamentary Conference which reminded me of the silent leadership that was given by my farther, late D A Rajapaksa, at a time when we were children. We all should work with a similar spirit when we address our nation’s problems as well. If we are able to do so, no one will be able to undermine the sovereignty of our nation.
A change in the prevailing Provincial Council system is necessary to make devolution more a meaningful to our people. Devolution should not be a political reform that will lead us to separation but instead it should be one that unifies all of us. It should not involve high spending and complex governance structures that will impose further burden on people.
Everybody who met me from all corners of Sri Lanka whether they were Tamils, Muslims or Sinhalese, asked for greater access to education, health, employment opportunities, better living and equal standards across the nation.The elimination of provincial disparities using national standards is the main weapon through which national reconciliation can be promoted. This Government remains committed to ensure that these aspirations of our people will be fulfilled.