Facebook icon
Twitter icon
e-mail icon

TNA calls for merged N-E based on a federal structure

Outlining its political stance in the run up to the Northern Provincial Council election later this month, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), stated that "power sharing arrangements must be established in a unit of a merged Northern and Eastern Provinces based on a Federal structure, in a manner also acceptable to the Tamil Speaking Muslim people."

See here for full text of what the Sri Lankan press is calling the party's manifesto.

Extract reproduced below:


OUR STAND ON A POLITICAL SOLUTION

The principles and specific constitutional provisions that the TNA considers to be paramount to the resolution of the national question relates mainly to the sharing of the powers of governance through a shared sovereignty amongst the Peoples who inhabit this island. The following salient features of power sharing are fundamental to achieving genuine reconciliation, lasting peace and development for all the Peoples of Sri Lanka:

•     The Tamils are a distinct People and from time immemorial have inhabited this island together with the Sinhalese People and others

•     The contiguous preponderantly Tamil Speaking Northern and Eastern provinces is the historical habitation of the Tamil Speaking Peoples

•     The Tamil People are entitled to the right to self-determination

•     Power sharing arrangements must be established in a unit of a merged Northern and Eastern Provinces based on a Federal structure, in a manner also acceptable to the Tamil Speaking Muslim people

•     Devolution of power on the basis of shared sovereignty shall necessarily be over land, law and order, socio-economic development including health and education, resources and fiscal powers.

MATTERS OF IMMEDIATE CONCERN FOR THE TAMIL PEOPLE

In addition to continuing to pursue a just and lasting solution, we will actively engage in addressing the immediate and current concerns of our People. We will seek to enforce the recommendations made by the Panel of Experts appointed by the UN Secretary General and the Resolutions adopted at the UN Human Rights Council in March 2012 and March 2013. The specific matters are as follows:

•     There must be meaningful de-militarization resulting in the return to the pre-war situation as it existed in 1983 before the commencement of hostilities by the removal of armed forces, military apparatuses and High Security/Restricted Zones from the Northern and Eastern Provinces

•     Tamil People who have been displaced in the North and the East due to the conflict must be speedily resettled in their original places; housing provided, their livelihoods restored and their dignity respected

•     An Independant International Investigation must be conducted into the allegations of violations of international human rights and humanitarian laws made against both the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE during the last stages of the war, the truth ascertained and justice to victims and reparation including compensation must be ensured

•     Persons who are detained without charges must be released promptly and a general amnesty should be granted to all other political prisoners

•     There must be finality reached with regard to thousands of missing persons and compensation must be paid to the next of kin

Tamils who fled the country must be permitted to return to their homes and a conducive atmosphere created for their return
•     A comprehensive programme for the development of the North and East including the creation of employment opportunities for the youth will be undertaken with the active support of the Sri Lankan State, the Tamil Diaspora and the International Community

We, the Tamil People of Sri Lanka are a distinct People in terms of the interpretations maintained in relation to International Conventions and Covenants. We as a People want to continue to live in our country in peaceful co-existence with others, with dignity and self respect, with freedom and liberty and without fear, as equal citizens not subject to majoritarian hegemony.

We as a People would thus be concerned about our historic habitats, our Collective Rights that accrue to us as a Nation and our right to exercise our option to determine what is best for us to ensure self government in the Tamil Speaking North-East of the country within a united Sri Lanka.

The present constitutional arrangements in this regard have proved to be unsatisfactory. A constitutional framework which favours the majority and a majoritarian hegemony is what is in place. Democracy in a plural society cannot function without a constitutional framework that provides for equity, equality, peace and security. It is in this context that we view the forthcoming Northern Provincial Council Election.

We need your support

Sri Lanka is one of the most dangerous places in the world to be a journalist. Tamil journalists are particularly at threat, with at least 41 media workers known to have been killed by the Sri Lankan state or its paramilitaries during and after the armed conflict.

Despite the risks, our team on the ground remain committed to providing detailed and accurate reporting of developments in the Tamil homeland, across the island and around the world, as well as providing expert analysis and insight from the Tamil point of view

We need your support in keeping our journalism going. Support our work today.