Parliament | Daily News


Premier fetes former Secretary General of Parliament

Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena said in Parliament yesterday that he appreciates the long-term service of former Secretary General of Parliament Dhammika Dasanayake, as Prime Minister and on behalf of the President, and congratulates new Secretary General Kushani Rohanadhira.

He said this during the eulogy in Parliament for the retired Parliamentary Secretary General Dhammika Dasanayake.

“The appointment of a Secretary General of the Parliament and the retirement of a Secretary General are considered as a rare occasion of Parliament. It is also considered as a respectful event. Being able to give them the high gratitude and respect is a unique opportunity.

“From September 15, 1994, Dhammika Dasanayake was appointed to the position of Assistant General Secretary of Parliament and then promoted to the position of Deputy General Secretary,” said the Premier.

“I’m not going to read about different moments in history. You especially inherited, as mentioned by the former general secretaries, the organiser of the opposition and the clerk to the House. It is respectfully noted that you have been able to join all of them in the past 30 years.” Prime Minister said.

“Shantha Deraniyagala acted as the first General Secretary and the Secretary under the Solebury Constitution. Sam Wijesinghe also worked under the Solebury Constitution. Similarly, Nihal Senaviratne is working under the Constitution 72 and the Constitution 78 and thereafter, Bertram Tittawela acted as Secretary General. Dhammika Kithilugoda acted as the Secretary General. Priyani Wijesekera acted as the Secretary General. Dhammika Dasanayake was also officiated at the honorable occasion of the General Secretaries of the Parliament, on this occasion, especially on behalf of the Government, and not only the Prime Minister but also the President, express our gratitude and thanks at this time.

“During your period of retirement, you have been working with us as the Secretary of the Constitutional Council. You gained extensive knowledge of parliamentary procedures in a short period of time when you first joined. Also, to improve traditionally, the institutions of the British Commonwealth of Nations and the Inter-National Parliamentary Assembly, CPU, SAARC, and similar parliamentary regional organisations and special institutions contributed to building and strengthening the related network.

“We are proud of our Secretary General, it is an honour for Sri Lanka to be able to deal with others as an incomparable person. The respect gained through that was not only for you but also for Parliament. Therefore, at the time of retirement today, you received a special invitation for the training of the representative countries of the Commonwealth of Nations. It is not an opportunity that every Secretary General gets. That is the depth of your ability, the guidance you can bestow.

“As the Secretary General of Parliament, I think you were able to deal with seven Speakers. These Speakers led Parliament as Speakers of many governments. Therefore, when governments change, political policies change. But within that, the Secretary General has to fulfill a serious responsibility to protect the honour, independence and heritage of Parliament. We have seen it in the past.

“The respect of the Parliament, the powers of the Parliament, the functioning of Parliament, and your leadership were given to everyone in Parliament. As MPs, we will have debates with you. Your ability to listen and deal with everything is unique,” the Premier said.


Programme will be prepared to safeguard children - Defence State Minister

Defence State Minister Pramitha Bandara Thennakoon said yesterday in Parliament that a programme will be prepared to safeguard children of the country and a social intelligence unit in this regard will be set up in the future.

“Within this year, it has been possible to come beyond the dark ages and speak optimistically about the country. Despite the external influences, it has to be accepted that these are matters of the wishes of some political leaders,” the State Minister said. “All the leaders of this country were invited to take charge of this country when the country was in economic trouble. No one came forward to take the Presidency. President Ranil Wickremesinghe took the burden,” he added.

I saw cases where young people were abused at the school level. It was a rare incident. We have to implement a special program to protect children.


House honours former Secretary General of Parliament Dhammika Dassanayake

Waruna Bandara Dhammika Dassanayake, who held the positions of Assistant Secretary General, Deputy Secretary General, and Secretary General of Parliament for 29 years, was honoured yesterday in Parliament.

Former Secretary General of Parliament, Dhammika Dassanayake, who retired, on May 23 was escorted to the chamber by Serjeant-at-Arms Narendra Fernando and after greeting Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena and the assembly, Dhammika Dassanayake sat in a seat of the Secretariat next to new Secretary General of the Parliament Kushani Rohanadheera.

When the Secretary General was escorted to the chamber by the Serjeant-at-Arms, the Prime Minister, the Leader of the House, the Chief Organizer of the ruling party, the Leader of the Opposition as well as the Ministers of the Parliament rose from their seats and paid their respects to him.

Leader of the House Susil Premjayanth presented the resolution yesterday (25) to appreciate the services of retired Secretary General of Parliament Dhammika Dassanayake.

Subsequently, Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena, Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa and many ministers expressed their comments.

Having held the positions of Assistant General Secretary of Parliament, Deputy General Secretary of Parliament and General Secretary of Parliament, Dhammika Dassanayake has extensive knowledge of the procedures of Parliament.

Dassanayake’s knowledge and strong commitment stood out in his duties and he has worked as Asian Regional Secretary of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association from 2010 to 2012 and from 2022 to 2023.

Although Dhammika Dassanayake has retired from the post of Secretary General of Parliament, he has been appointed as the Secretary of the Constitutional Council for his abilities and knowledge.

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