Election of the President should be through a Popular Vote
The Liberal Party
Mr Kamal Nissanka , the Secretary General and Leader of the Liberal Party issuing a statement regarding the proposed 20th amendment states that parliament should not have the power to elect a president of the Republic.
It further says that , “The recent past experience shows us that in some instances members of parliament could be bought offering huge sums of money and we have also witnessed that members of parliament change their side of allegiance without having any policy issue within their political parties. “
It states that under the present district proportional preferential voting system candidates have to face a lot of expenditures for propaganda work and therefore many candidates are engaging in illegal activities to earn money. Therefore most of elected members of parliament are corrupted and some of them even having lots of court cases on fraud and corruption. Many of these members do not possess a good educational background and further most of them are selling their duty free vehicle permits and cheating the people. Liberal Party therefore suggests that such elements should not have the sole right of electing our head of state.
The Liberal party feels one of the best provisions in the Second Republic constitution is the method of election of the president although the party is of the view that many of the excessive executive powers of presidency should be curtailed. It further says that that sovereign people should not allow parliamentarians to take their power of electing their head of state.
The Liberal Party notes that some of the best functioning democracies such as UK, Netherlands and Japan have their own monarchies and therefore the question of having president does not arise in those countries but in countries termed as republics, as people are sovereign there should be method of electing their heads of state in an all inclusive manner and our electoral system is a very transparent one in this regard.
An Electoral College may sometimes stand as an alternative method to appoint a president but in that regard all local government councilors, all provincial council members and all parliamentarians should be incorporated to the Electoral College to give the president a wider mandate.
Therefore the Liberal Party urges the parliamentarians to oppose the 20th amendment as piece meal amendments do not bring stability to the country.