In democratic countries it is presumed that the sovereignty rests
with the people and it is inalienable. People use their sovereignty to
elect their rulers and subsequently these elected rulers draft a
Constitution which is an instrument that is being used as a guideline to
rule the country.
But the inalienable sovereign right of the people that is enshrined
in the Constitution has been robbed by the Constitution makers in a
subtle manner by restricting the wishes of the people by not allowing
them to elect a person as President for more than two terms. But in the
case of persons who contest for the post of Prime Minister this
restriction is not imposed against them.
It should be stated that the Constitution should prevail for the
sovereign people and the sovereign people do not prevail for the
Constitution. Therefore the sovereign people are supreme when electing
their rulers. The Constitution cannot in any manner restrict the choice
of the people when they elect their rulers.
If the sovereign people wish that they should have the services of a
particular individual to rule them for any number of terms as President,
the Constitution cannot restrict the sovereign wish of the sovereign
people because the sovereignty which is inalienable rests with the
people in the election of their rulers.
Therefore this sovereignty which precedes the Constitution could be
exercised by the Sovereign People only at an election to elect their
rulers. Sovereignty of the people ends after an election and the
Constitution and the rulers usurp the sovereignty of the people and rule
the country until the next election.
In the above context the Constitution makers and the Constitution
itself have no right to block or restrict the sovereign wish of the
people by restricting or impeding the right to elect a leader of their
choice for any number of terms.
In the case of Parliamentary Elections the sovereign people can elect
a single party (in a democracy a party is considered as an individual)
for any number of terms. Also the leader of a particular party could be
elected as the Prime Minister for any number of terms. The Members of
Parliament too could be elected for any number of terms even until they
As above it proves that no single person, any institution or a
document could restrict the freedom of the sovereign people in electing
a Prime Minister, Members of Parliament, Provincial Councilors etc. This
sovereign right has not been restricted nor blocked by the ‘term
In the case of the Presidential Elections, the term of an incumbent
President is restricted to two terms and sovereign people are denied the
election of their choice for more than twice if they wish to do so. It
appears that the Constitution has subjugated the sovereignty of the
people and has adopted a double standard in respect of the sovereign
people’s right of choice in electing a President for more than two terms
to serve them compared to the election of the PM and other people’s
Therefore to safeguard the sovereignty of the sovereign people who
enjoy the supreme power in a democracy the ‘term principle’ in the
Constitution should be abolished or rescinded to make people’s
The inalienable sovereignty of the people which has been alienated
surreptitiously by the Constitution should be expressly made inalienable
and meaningful by allowing a President who has completed his two terms
to continue further if the people wish to vote him in.
Ranjith Jordana - Dehiwela
Recently I travelled towards Hambantota along with some friends to
see the New Harbour development project. It was my good fortune that I
am still living to write on this topic. I hesitate to call most of these
as accidents but prefer to call them as lack of regard to other living
A bus driving at very high speed close to Hambantota was following a
heavy, earth moving truck which was also moving at high speed. The truck
observing road works and seeing that there was hardly enough room to
avoid our vehicle and the group of workers applied brakes and swerved
the truck on to his right and managed to stop few yards away.
The bus which was racing with the truck was so close to it and the
distance he kept was not sufficient to stop in time, the bus driver
crept through just missing us. If not that we were stationery, he could
not have judged the gap and would have ended with a tragedy. He
I narrated this just to show, if the accident happened, who was at
The main fault I have to attribute to the bus driver, simply because
he was not keeping the required distance between the truck and the bus,
in relation to his speed. I wonder how many drivers are aware of this
and whether the examiners do examine drivers properly.
The other party to be blamed is the Road Development Authority. They
should have warned, on-coming drivers about the road works at a safe
distance ahead. This is no excuse to the bus driver as it was a straight
road where he could see far ahead clearly. Best would be to have safety
cones to guide, in which case drivers will have to slowdown, if of
course they care about others.
Another aspect of this is the bad implementation of bus timetables.
If the times are kept and work them out with an average safe speed and
controlled from different points, there will be no hurry as they cannot
go beyond check points until the scheduled time comes. I noticed on my
way from Colombo to Hambantota via Galle and back via Ratnapura the
biggest culprits are bus drivers.
I read in some news report that the estimated loss to the Government
is around 15 billion rupees annually on account of traffic accidents.
So let us hope that those who are in authority will note this and
take measures to rectify these areas; Dangerous driving, poor traffic
controlling, poor road conditions.
Inadequacy of proper driver training, poor and abusive system of
penalties, ignorance and lack of civil conscience, obstructions of
payments and pathways, introducing more traffic lights and road signs.
D P Y Abeywardhana - Nawala
Treasury Secretary Dr P B Jayasundara, hit the nail on the head when
he accused the SPC (State Pharmaceutical Corporation) of being
responsible for the drug shortages in the State sector. This was an
‘Open’ secret known to every body in the Health Ministry and the
Pharmaceutical Trade but nobody - not even the DESC and DRA - dared to
expose for fear of ministerial wrath or discrimination in award of
With few hand picked officers well entrenched in the SPC
masterminding the import of drugs for more than a decade they fattened
themselves at the expense of the poor public. Non availability of drugs
and poor quality drugs were the result.
The SPC established on the initiative of the revered late Prof Senaka
Bibile for the benefit of the poor has turned out to be their biggest
exploiter. However to cover up their sins they never fail to pay homage
to Prof Bibile’s name on a grand scale.
An inquiry in a transparent manner by a committee headed by the
Treasury Secretary is sure to reveal startling facts about the manner in
which the culprit officials created drug shortages and purchased drugs
with short life spans. I hope Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena will
not fall prey or be taken for a ride by the machinations of the SPC
mafia and ‘pseudo doctors’ who should be exorcised from this
DR A G DE SILVA - Ragama
I am an elderly lady, a widow living depending entirely on the
interest received on my deposit in finance companies. Earlier the
interest rate was 20.5 percent. But now it has been reduced to 13
percent. Formerly I received about Rs 1,700 for Rupees one lakh. Now I
receive only about Rs 1,000 for Rupees one lakh and thus incurring a
loss of Rs 700.
I am not a pensioner and being a person in poor health, with various
ailments. My medical bills are very high. And also due to the very high
Cost of Living, I am unable to live within this income. I cannot get
indebted and have none to assist me.
May this letter draw the attention of authorities and give us relief
H L Kandy
Finance Deputy Minister Sarath Amunugama in his Budget speech did not
make even a passing remark about the pension anomaly created in 2006. He
gave an assurance to the Public Servants of salary increase from 2011.
Over five Lakhs of pensioners who retired before January 1, 2006 were
not placed on the salary scales given to Public Servants on January 1,
Pensioners are suffering immensely due to high Cost of Living and
price of drugs which have become essential for their existence.
Hope he will not forget about them when preparing the Budget for year
B B Perera - Katubedda
Day by day the Dengue affected number of patients are increasing at a
rate. Though many awareness programs are launched islandwide to
eradicate this deadly illness, but upto now no complete eradication is
PHIs should take stern action in their areas against those who have
been ignorant and was the cause for these mosquitoes breeding. Frequent
visits by the PHIs and proper penalty system will be much successful
than other ways. The Pradeshiya Sabhas should have proper plans to be
implemented every month, so the inhabitants of the area will be on
alert, to keep their homes and surroundings clean. All proposals planned
in this regard should immediately come into action to save people from
this risk of losing lives continuously.
The Government is concentrating on large-scale eradication programs,
which will enhance the country in future to be dengue free, but it is
the duty of each and everyone of us to give a hand to support this
cause, at least by cleaning our own premises and destroying mosquitoe
breeding places by following the instructions given by the media and
other health organizations. If all hands are raised and given priority
to this matter, soon Sri Lanka will be dengue free.
M N Kaiyoom