Photos: For Sri Lankan farmers, president’s escape is bittersweet | Agriculture News

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, whose clan’s alleged corruption and mismanagement plunged Sri Lanka into break after a two-decade-long maintain over Sri Lankan politics, has escaped the nation.

For the island’s bankrupted farmers, the autumn of the Rajapaksa dynasty has a bitter-sweet style.

“My nation could be very lovely however politicians destroy it,” mentioned Rohan Thilak Gurusinghe, a tea farmer in Kandy district, certainly one of Sri Lanka’s tea-growing strongholds.

Strolling throughout his distressed tea property, Gurusinghe expresses unhappiness over the collapse of his as soon as flourishing enterprise.

“Six workers used to work right here however I needed to let go three of them as farming yields had crashed,” he informed Al Jazeera.

The manufacturing of rice, one other staple, additionally dropped by 40 % in the course of the rising season that resulted in March. The island is now gearing up for a 60 % drop in rice yields throughout Yala, essentially the most vital cultivating season in Sri Lanka that lasts until August.

On the root of the issue lies a controversial in a single day ban on chemical fertilisers by the Rajapaksa authorities in April final yr in a bid to make agriculture totally natural.

“We informed the federal government a sudden ban on fertilisers would destroy our earnings however nobody listened to us, even much less so the president who is aware of nothing about agriculture. It took them months to grasp their mistake, that’s insane,” Gurusinghe informed Al Jazeera.

In April this yr, a yr for the reason that ban, President Rajapaksa admitted that the abrupt transfer was a “mistake”.

The collapse of Sri Lanka’s agricultural sector and the $4.4bn tourism trade in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic had been early warning indicators of an impending disaster.

The island of twenty-two million folks ran out of international trade reserves within the following months and couldn’t pay for imports of gas and different necessities, together with fertilisers, the bedrock of agriculture.

As gas reserves dried up, folks started to queue up, generally for days, hoping to get just a few litres of petrol. Skyrocketing inflation kicked in – reaching 55 % in June – and determined Sri Lankan farmers lastly hit the streets as soon as once more, forcing the president to flee.

Tunisian constitution committee head condemns president’s draft | News

Former constitutional legislation professor Sadok Belaid says constitutional chapters might pave means for a ‘disgraceful dictatorial regime’.

The pinnacle of Tunisia’s structure committee has condemned the proposed structure put ahead by President Kais Saied this week, the native Assabah newspaper has reported.

Sadok Belaid, a former constitutional legislation professor named by Saied to draft a “new structure for brand new republic”, mentioned Saied’s model was harmful and didn’t resemble the primary draft proposed by the structure committee.

Belaid mentioned the ultimate structure printed by the president incorporates chapters that would pave the way in which for “a disgraceful dictatorial regime”.

“…it’s our obligation to strongly and in truth announce that the structure that was formally printed… and offered for referendum isn’t related to the structure we ready and despatched to the president,” he mentioned in a letter printed by the Assabah newspaper.

The president has not commented on the structure since he printed the textual content on Thursday in Tunisia’s official gazette. The structure would give Saied way more powers and shall be put to a referendum subsequent month.

On Saturday, the top of the highly effective UGTT union additionally mentioned the proposed structure might threaten democracy within the nation.

However the union, a serious political drive with multiple million members, mentioned it will permit its members the liberty to vote as they select on the structure proposed by Saied.

Voters shall be requested to approve the structure in a July 25 referendum.

Saied has dominated by decree since final 12 months, when he brushed apart the parliament and the democratic 2014 structure in a step his foes known as a coup, shifting in the direction of one-man rule and promising to remake the political system.

The UGTT mentioned the proposed structure preserved chapters associated to freedoms and rights, however that some restrictions and the absence of ensures might threaten these freedoms and rights and provide a possibility to violate them.

The draft structure printed within the official gazette would carry most political energy below Saied, giving him final authority over the federal government and judiciary.

Beforehand, political energy was extra straight exercised by parliament, which took the lead function in appointing the federal government and approving laws.

Underneath the proposed new structure, the federal government would reply to the president and to not parliament although the chamber might withdraw confidence from the federal government with a two-thirds majority.

Saied could be allowed to current draft legal guidelines, have sole duty for proposing treaties and drafting state budgets, appoint or take away authorities ministers and appoint judges.