New Democratic Front (NDF) Presidential candidate Sajith Premadasa yesterday promised not to permit the issue of licenses for new liquor stores while also announcing he would close down wine stores located in close proximity to schools, once elected as President.
He gave this assurance to the country’s women during a ceremony held to launch his Women’s Charter ‘Diriya Eya Wenuwen Senehase Arambuma’ at the Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium, Colombo, yesterday.
Premadasa became the first-ever Presidential candidate in the country to sign such a social compact with the country’s female population.
He said from the very first day of his election to the Presidency, he would work to provide women with the equal rights enjoyed by the male population.
Premadasa promised a Presidential Task Force on Women’s Rights would be set up and every Divisional Secretariat Division would be empowered with a unit of the proposed Task Force.
“Under my rule, the penalty for drug kingpins and those found guilty of sexual offences against women will be more severe,” Premadasa said. He also stressed that a comprehensive programme would be implemented to support and facilitate the war widows and families where women are the sole bread-winners.
Speaking on women’s participation in politics, he said that it was expected to increase women’s representation in the Provincial Councils and Parliament by up to 25 percent in the future.
“An Independent Commission on Women would be set up to provide solutions to women’s issues and the Charter signed yesterday would be given added powers within three months of my victory,” the NDF candidate further assured.
Meanwhile, Women and Child Affairs and Dry Zone Development Minister Chandrani Bandara said the Rajapaksa regime has no right to talk about women’s rights as women of this country were going through a very dark period period to 2015.
She said a powerful and a golden era would dawn for the women of this country under the leadership of Sajith Premadasa.
The minister also criticized the Opposition for using children in their election campaign and pointed out that this is an illegal act.
Former First Lady Hema Premadasa, female politicians of the United National Front in Parliament including Ministers, State Ministers and MPs, PS members, Minister Sajith Premadasa’a wife Jalani Premadasa and female party supporters from across the country participated on this occasion.
(Source: Daily News – By Lahiru Fernando)