Till Govt amends dual citizenship clause : We will oppose 20A Bill – Ven. Muruththettuwe Ananda Thera
By Nabiya Vaffoor
We will fight against the 20th Amendment Bill till the President and his Government amends the dual citizenship clause, said the Chief Incumbent of the Abhayarama Temple, Ven. Muruththettuwe Ananda Thera.
“The public is well aware of dual citizens and what they can cause because of figures such as former Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran. If these dual citizens are patriotic to get involved in the State apparatus, why don’t they follow President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and throw away the citizenship of the other country?
The Buddhist clergy, along with the Pavidi Handa Organisation, will fight against the 20th Amendment till the President and his Government amends the dual citizenship clause, because this Government was elected by us, and therefore, protecting it and helping it to avoid the shortcomings that are made during its tenure is our responsibility,” he added.
The monk further said this Government should bring in a Constitution that suits the country in a timely manner, without creating so much confusion in the very first Bill that was brought since this Government was appointed with a lot of hope by the public.
Meanwhile, Ven. Elle Gunawansa Thera said the Buddhist clergy is the main reason that the President got a two-thirds majority in Parliament.
“The Tamil Diaspora, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and Islamist extremists are looking for a loophole to execute their plans on dividing this country. Dual citizenship is the loophole that they are looking for. If dual citizens are also given the right to vote while being in those countries, the Tamil Diaspora, NGOs and Islamist extremists can control our politics easily, by using these votes and appointing their representatives to Parliament, since most of these Diaspora members hold anti-Government views. That is a dangerous situation that the country can fall into.
Since the Buddhist clergy is the main reason that the President got a two-thirds majority in Parliament, the President and the Cabinet Ministers should remember that they are capable of turning the tables as well. Therefore, it is better that the rulers consider the advice of the monks and stand with the public, without following short-term privileges and forgetting why they were appointed,” the monk said.
The duo said so yesterday (21), at a Media briefing held at the Pavidi Handa Organisation Headquarters.