Header Ads

 New website available at www.slguardian.org

An Open Appeal to Douglas Devananda

“I cannot accept your assertion that you did not receive the itinerary for the visit and the Foreign Office failed to inform you about our meeting with you. It is our experience from every engagement we undertook, that briefings from the Foreign Office had been appropriately given and the officials did their utmost in a responsible manner to proceed through the agreed programme.”
___________________________________

by R Jayadevan

(February 29, London, Sri Lanka Guardian) A delegation assembled by me incorporating wider views of the Tamil Diaspora visited Sri Lanka on the invitation of the President from 17th to 23rd February 2008. The scheduled five days of fact finding mission included visits to Jaffna, Batticaloa, Puttalam and meetings with government ministers, officials and civil society leaders.

If not for your interference to undermine the programme, our visit would have given valuable insight into the situation prevailing in Sri Lanka. There are compelling and circumstantial evidence available to confirm your highhanded act to frustrate our visit. It is unimaginable that you were able to single handily and remorselessly proceed through to wreck our visit.

I am unable to accept or prepared to comprehend any amount of excuses given to exonerate your conduct during our telephone conversations in Colombo. Our conversations further strengthened the view of your single handed involvement in frustrating our visit.

I have no hesitation in stating that you wanted this visit to come under your scope and management and when this failed, you proceeded on the wrecking path to frustrate the programme fermenting all sorts of excuses. You have asserted this position very clearly during our conversations and when I refused to accommodate your version of events, desperation started to dictate your conduct and attempts were made to mitigate the damage your effort had caused to our visit.

I cannot accept your assertion that you did not receive the itinerary for the visit and the Foreign Office failed to inform you about our meeting with you. It is our experience from every engagement we undertook, that briefings from the Foreign Office had been appropriately given and the officials did their utmost in a responsible manner to proceed through the agreed programme. Having failed to meet us according to the programme, you then determinedly went on to frustrate our visit.

It is regretted that worm heart and understanding shown by the government ministers, the Opposition Leader and the government officials was not forthcoming from you. During our conversations, I was able to establish that you wanted exclusive control on Tamil matters and wanting every issue involving the Tamils to be directed or handled through you. When this was not forthcoming with us, you became determined to frustrate our visit to the East. Any amount of justification to exonerate yourself now and claim that Sri Lankan politics is different to the Western type of democracies cannot be acceptable and you must personally and fully take the responsibility to push your way through to frustrate our visit.

If not for your unacceptable and undue interference, our visit could have given valuable insight and helped our people engage further in the process to find peace in Sri Lanka.

This attitude of excessive control of yours is no different to the ‘control freak’ mindset of the LTTE. Our experience proved that the Tamils are not only having difficulties in finding ways to release themselves from the clutches of the LTTE, but also have an uphill task to liberate them from the conditioned and controlling mindsets opposing the LTTE.

In conclusion, I humbly appeal to you to disengage from such behaviour and embrace democratic and transparent ideals to strengthen accountability to become acceptable to the people. Our people have suffered enough for a long time and in the fast progressing world, every effort must be made by political parties and the leaders to reflect responsible governance and Eelam People’s Democratic Party (EPDP) which you head too must change to become acceptable to the people by embracing democratic ideals.

No comments

Powered by Blogger.