Sept 30, Colombo: Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena asserted that he will never allow a new constitution that would damage the unitary state of the country to be prepared and he will not permit any clause regarding Buddhism that appears in the present constitution to be removed or downgraded.
Speaking at a function held at the Gamunupura Buddhist Center in Ampara on Friday, the President said that in the interim report submitted on the compilation of the new constitution, it does not define a joint government concept.
President Sirisena emphasized that the draft report for a new constitutional proposals in any way does not project a concept of a Federal State.
"Today we are a united Sri Lanka. I will never allow a constitution that will break up this unitary status," the President stressed.
The President said that while a series of false claims have been made regarding the place given for Buddhism in the new constitution, there will be no elimination or downgrading in the new constitution of any clauses or paragraphs pertaining to Buddhism that are in the current constitution.
President Sirisena stressed before the Mahanayaka Theros that there is no clause in the new constitutional proposals to separate or divide the country, and said that still there is no draft proposal for a new constitution, and the report which presented to the Parliament merely taking into the consideration of ideas and suggestions of all the parties, leaving room for the alterations, discussions as well as for negotiation.
President Sirisena also said that the government will build a society where all segments of people can live in this Buddhist country in peace and harmony.
"The Government is paying its prime attention to provide solutions for the problems faced by the people in the North and East, ensuring sustainable peace in the country, building reconciliation among all the communities in a way which will prevent the recurrence of war," he added.
He said the problems currently exist can be discussed and solved at the table together with the persons who bear socio-political responsibilities in various fields. Only then it will be possible to build a peaceful nation, he added.
Recalling that Sri Lanka had faced many wars in the history and more recently the three-decade long war against terrorism, the President said today as a unitary state the most prominent tasks are to continue to maintain peace and stability in the country and prevent the recurrence of another war while building unity, reconciliation and brotherhood among all the communities.
He said that even an idea in people's minds that there will be another war in this country in future will be very dangerous and will take the country back to the dark era.
"Therefore we need to completely eliminate the opportunities for such ideas to spring. We are committed to build a society in this country where the peace, unity, friendship, brotherhood, and trust prevail for every citizen to live freely without any fear and suspicion," the President said.
President Sirisena also requested Manayaka Theros and all the religious leaders including Hindu, Islamic and Christians to discuss in this regard sitting at the same table.
"I must clearly say that we will never allow to make a constitution that will lead to destroy the unitary state of the country or separate the country," the President stressed.