Public nuisance is an offence punishable under the Penal Code and the
Code of Criminal Procedure Act. The Local Authorities have a statutory
duty to prevent and prohibit acts of nuisance caused to the public.
All Local Authorities, Municipal Councils, Urban Councils and
Pradeshiya Sabhas are empowered to prohibit, prevent and punish the
offenders under their powers. Election of members to many Local
Authorities in March this year and the members of the Local Authorities
have great responsibilities in educating their voters to abide by the
laws applicable to their areas.
The main functions of a Local Authority, inter alia, are charged with
regulation, control and administration of all matters relating to public
health, public utility services and public thoroughfares and generally
with the protection and promotion of the comfort, convenience and
welfare of the people within the area of jurisdiction.
With the advent of British administration in 1815, British Governors
in the first few years were bent on stabilising their power in the newly
acquired Colony, Ceylon. The Colerbrooke Cameron reform proposals and
the Municipal Council Ordinance and the Police Ordinance provided the
necessary authority for maintaining law and order and Governors such as
Sir Herculous Robbinson, Henry Ward, Governor Gregory Gordon and
Ridgeway in their administration of the country conferred many
privileges and benefits to the people.
The Nuisance Ordinance No. 15 of 1862, the Police Ordinance and the
Municipal Councils Ordinance were passed by the Legislative Council
between the years 1862 - 1865 which empowered the Local Authorities to
be aware of what their duties are towards the public and also the
functions of the State in regard to good governance.
The three Municipal Councils, Colombo, Kandy and Galle were given the
privilege of electing their representatives to the Municipal Councils in
order that their views and opinions could be taken into consideration in
the administration of cities.
The Secretary of State for Colonies has given instructions that if
the British want to stabilise retain their possessions in the Far East,
Ceylon should be given its representatives a greater share of
It is in this spirit that UK Government sent benighted governors
specially after 1848 rebellion. Local Authorities in particular have the
greatest share in the control and prevention of nuisance caused by
incursion by way of water, noise, smoke, smell, fumes, vibration, gas,
vegetation and animals.
The elected members of Local Authorities owe their status from the
people, the Electorate which they represent. In return they have a duty
to look after the welfare in common specially, public health and
Under the Ward electoral system whereby members were elected from a
Ward to a particular Ward, the contact between the member and voter was
very much closer and the Voter and the Member knew their requirements.
Under the P.R. System (Proportional Representation System) liasion
between the voter and the member is for a part and the member could
ignore, be indifferent and even refuse blatantly to consider the voter's
requirement, Sans Locus Standi.
The Central Environmental Authority Act No. 47 of 1980 and 56 of 1988
have made provision to take action under this law. This is a salutary
statute provided by the Government. Members of Local Authority, most of
them seek esteem as honourable members as a social status, as a step to
ascend in the political and social ladder.
Ability and competency in education, in wealth and social standing
are to some extent ignored in the selection by the political parties in
selecting and nominating their candidates which may help the party to
get a majority of votes but may not be beneficial and helpful to the
Granted that these requirements are necessary for a political party
the ultimate purpose of good governance is minimised or lost. In order
to overcome this situation it is necessary that the newly elected
members should be made aware by their party hierarchy to participate not
only in social functions but also in various committees participate with
people and administrative staff and act within the scope of the laws,
by-laws and regulations of the Local Authority.
Noise pollution, air pollution and dumping of waste materials on the
roads have the worst impact on the people. Nuisance being a health
hazard and injurious to the people the Medical Sections or Department,
the Public Health Inspectors have a great responsibility in inspecting,
investigation and control of the environment.
People's participation in the prevention and control and abatement of
nuisances, with advisory and people's committees from wards or suitable
areas within a Local Authority will be very effective in this sphere.
A true hero in all sense! A monument in Matale for this Corporal
would be very much appreciated. If bugs have exchanged hands in
billions, those traitors should be caught and exposed, 'cos they are our
true traitors in lions' skin!
I must commend Malinda Seneviratne for his article titled 'Revenge,
as an article of faith' (DN of March 8).
It is high time that an intelligent analysis of Lasantha
Wickramatunge's malady is analysed and why he is so virulent in his
attacks on the former President and the PA in general. What ails this
editor of the Sunday Leader and the Morning Leader?
We all know the shortcomings of the former President, but the manner
in which this Editor tried to humiliate her and the language he used is
hardly journalism. Certainly, if he was playing to the gallery, hurrah!
Lasantha should know by now that there is a sizeable section of the
population which treats its leaders with a modicum of respect.
There was a time when many of us looked forward to receiving the
Sunday Leader for the expose's of corruption and we admired the editor
and its writers for their gustiness. However, I think this has gone to
the head of the editor and he thinks that we will approve everything he
writes or permits to be written.
Unfortunately, his journalism is selective in that he hardly berates
the UNP or its Leader who has proven to be a weak failure-prone leader
who has consistently lost almost every election. There is no criticism
of his leadership, just a slap on the wrist, if ever.
Where is the criticism of the LTTE for its barbaric murders, child
abductions, violations of the CFA thousands of time? How come this
editor suddenly lost steam on his attacks on Tiling Sumathipala, whom he
labelled 'bookiepala' and attacked him for months? He stopped all
attacks on Sumathipala as soon as Ranil made him organiser for
Anuradhapura. Shame on you Lasantha!
At the talks in Geneva between the Sri Lanka Government and the LTTE,
who was that woman journalist who tried to crash the meeting? Why didn't
Lasantha expose her identity? How did a woman journalist get a copy of
the Government's statement even before it was read out and who was she?
Lasantha who knows every detail of what someone ate and the amount paid
and who paid, suddenly has lost his pen!
On the same day the above article by Milinda Seneviratne appeared,
the Morning Leader had a front page headline that the UNP has plans to
wrest control of the Government after the Local Government Polls.
Hello Lasantha, the UNP has acted in a childish fashion and couldn't
even get their nomination list approved for the CMC.
And still the feuding and accusations are going on. Tell us Lasantha,
how the UNP (read RANIL) is going to achieve this miracle? From the time
the UNP was defeated, Lasantha has been like a doomsday prophet,
forecasting war, fall of the Government, crossovers to the UNP.
Unfortunately for Lasantha he must be going to the wrong astrologer.
As Malinda Seneviratne says, we are all free to have our political
opinions, but the Leader paper need not be a mouthpiece of the UNP or of
any other party. We all know that in many democratic countries, some
newspapers do show some partiality to one party but not in such an
obvious manner as the Leader newspaper. It might as well be printed at
We hope even now, Lasantha will remove his tinted glasses and see the
political spectrum more clearly. This country is being held to ransom by
the LTTE. It is the bounden duty of every citizen of this country, if
he/she values fair play and wants peace in this country, to expose the
LTTE for what it is - a barbaric terrorist organisation. There can be no
kid glove treatment for the Tigers.
If all media expose their atrocities and duplicity to the
International community, then the LTTE will become more amenable to
negotiation. Newspaper editors need not suck up to the Tigers, unless
of-course there is some benefit to them. We hope that Lasantha will
change his biased newspapers to a more balanced one, criticize, expose
and laud when required.
We appeal to the President to use his good office to bring the
barbaric act of using a pregnant woman to commit as a suicide bomber, to
the notice of the whole world and highlight their propaganda machine to
take stern action against LTTE Leader who had given specific
instructions to use this type of barbaric act.
They should not get away like they got away from all other crimes
they committed such as killing innocent babies, pregnant women, poor
farmers etc. It is our duty to highlight this act to the notice of
International Community, all Human Rights agencies.
Today in Sri Lanka all pregnant ladies are facing embarrassment as
the people are looking at them in a suspicious manner. This concept was
a creation of brainwashed LTTE.