All Party Conference today
The All Party Conference (APC) convened by President Ranil Wickremesinghe to make the Party Leaders aware about the programmes implemented and programmes expected to be implemented with regard to the national reconciliation will be held in the afternoon today at the Presidential Secretariat.
The President’s Office sent invitations to all political parties and independent groups representing Parliament to this conference, which is being held to inform about the government’s proposals regarding the building of national reconciliation and to know the views of the political parties.
Apart from Samagi Jana Balavegaya (SJB) and National People’s Power (NPP), all other political parties, including the Tamil and Muslim political parties representing the North and the East, have confirmed that they will present their views and proposals regarding national reconciliation, President’s office sources said.
The same sources further state that the SJB has informed the President’s Office that it will inform this morning (26) whether the party will participate in the APC or not.
The NPP had announced to the media that their party will not participate in the APC.
It has been announced that a high-level delegation of the SLPP led by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, the main party representing the Parliament, will participate in the conference.
The SLFP led by former President Maithripala Sirisena, has also confirmed that it will participate in the conference.
The President has presented a comprehensive proposal for reconciliation and devolution and for furthering the multifaceted aspects of the North’s development plan and the President has invited all the party leaders in the Parliament to work with consensus for the sake of national unity regarding these measures.
If we attend APC, it’s because of the people
Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa said he hopes the President will act in the best interest of the country at the All-Party Conference to be held today with a clearly defined common agenda. He said the President has invited the Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) for the discussion but he said there was no common agenda, programme, unity or working with one opinion in the members of the current Government. The Opposition Leader said they will be attending this discussion thinking about the country and the people and if it feels that this discussion is yet another usual political trick, then they will leave the discussion table immediately.
The Opposition Leader said this yesterday (25) at the occasion of presenting a bus to the Bibile Medagama National School under the Sakwala programme.
Premadasa said that the success of a Government’s negotiation will only work if it is done in good faith and there should not be any political gimmicks and if the discussions are to be successful then they must be done for the betterment of the country and its people with clean attitude.
The Opposition Leader also said the Government should have a clear programme and eventhough they have been called for these discussions, they are not yet aware of the issues contained in the agenda and the Opposition is participating in this because the people have thought that it will be good for the country. The Opposition Leader emphasised that there have been many conflicts of opinion between the 134 MPs of the Government and that before coming to the discussion, those differences of opinion should be reconciled and arrive at a common opinion.
He said that even at this time when the country is trying to recover from many changes, there is a health policy that destroys the people’s lives by bringing in fake medicines and even in the health sector of the bankrupt country, theft is happening and in such a situation, the Government should correct these mistakes before holding discussions and negotiations.