Predictable-end and anticlimax Sri Lanka way

by Helasingha Bandara

(September 09, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian)
Theatre with no drama, drama with predictable anticlimax, men without honour, politics without principles, backbones without bones and an opposition without leadership are all debilitating components of an eroding society. The journey towards an internationally condemned pariah state, the dictatorship , the perpetual widening of the gap between the poor and the rich (rich in relative terms), virtual lawlessness, infinite destitution of the powerless, and the servitude of the masses are unavoidable in such a society, in other words in a cesspool of a country. It should be understood that even among the worms in a cesspool some may consider themselves to be better than others not knowing that they are still tiny worms and are confined to a cesspool. The handful of people who value dignity, self respect and self esteem will abandon such a cesspool. To the rest “If you have made the bed sleep on it”, others may say.

During the election campaign for the general elections the UPFA campaigned strongly to gain a two third majority in the parliament. This writer raised questions before the general elections as to what the government cannot do without the two third majority and expressed the view that the only thing they cannot do is to amend the constitution for the President to make way for himself to contest for a third term and predicted that the main component of the proposed constitutional amendment would be to repeal the restriction of the two terms in office. It was not rocket science to predict this as in the Sri Lanka society, all drama, political or otherwise, have predictable endings. Who did not know that Mervin Silva would be cleared by the party disciplinary committee and would end up in a better position ( Please read Removal of Mervin Silva and the sentencing of the General, Coincidence!, 17 Aug 2010 , Sri Lanka Guardian)? Which underworld criminal was not shot by the police while trying to throw a grenade at the police in order to escape? Which police officer did not escape punishment for the crimes that they have committed in the guise that that they were carrying out orders? How many politically connected people who were sentenced to death received presidential pardon? All those drama had predictable endings with unavoidable anticlimax.

I am sorry to say that poor Ranil has neither charisma nor leadership traits. He has not been able to convince his own colleagues that the purpose of the 19th amendment is to prolong the family rule with absolute dictatorial hegemony. Ranil does not need signed declarations from the MP’s of his party to work under his leadership if he is a convincing leader. He did not need the ability of Obama to convince his party members that the proposed amendments were detrimental to the country and its people as it was quite obvious. If he was not capable of doing even that much what is the point of him remaining as the leader of the opposition? Seven parliamentarians of the opposition decided to vote for the amendments. Paba is one for example. Do they really understand how important a constitution is for good governance? Are they just wimps without a clue about politics, with no understanding of the needs of the people, and with no sense of the civilised world? The Middle East can hardly be called a civilised world where Paba is supposed to have been brought up. Oil money alone will not make people civilised although the money enables them to employ and abuse poor women from Sri Lanka where the political leadership is unashamedly boasting about making Sri Lanka the star country of Asia (Ha! Ha! A long way to go!).

On the contrary, all 7 members of the DNA have decided to vote against the amendments. Indeed in the parliament there are a very few who have the quality, suitability and the skills to represent people. All seven members of the DNA fall into this category (Please read Magnificent Seven, Sri Lanka Guardian , 18 April 2010). In addition, the General is a true leader who is capable of keeping them together. This says that it is time for the members of the UNP who believe in genuine politics to abandon the UNP and join the DNA to form a strong opposition under a strong leader. Even if the General is sent to prison in order to stop such a strong opposition emerging there are still few others in such an alliance to take up the reigns with equal vigour. Hanging on to the old horse (elephant in this case) to win races would be no different from the emergence of the proverbial turtle to see the sky through the hole of a Yoke (Kesbewa viyasiduren ahasa ballanna se).