| by A Special Correspondent
( December 16, 2014, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Former Minister Champika Ranawaka argues that Mahinda Rajapaksa ( MR) has already greatly damaged the economy of Sri Lanka than that of Prabakaran’s war for the thirty years. This is the hypothesis of minister who worked with MR until recent time. You do not need to have a degree in economics to know how the economy of this nation has been destroyed within the last 9 years by MR and family. It is no secret that entire government apparatus and departments are controlled by MR and family. Ministers do not have any power to make their own decisions. In the name of development and mega projects, billions of dollars are borrowed with a huge interest rate. According to JVP’s political analysis it would take more 30 years to pay back all these loans with interests. Most of so called mega projects are unsustainable or not timely needed projects. For Instance, Port projects in Oluvil and Hambanthota are not sustainable at all. It is reported that more 50% workers at Oluvil are getting salaries without any work done or without reporting to work at all. It is reported that port at Hambanthota is not sustainable in a long run. What more is that Mattala Airport project is a clear cut- disaster? Likewise most of MR development projects are clear cut disaster for the economy of this nation. It is argued that more money has been wasted by MR and family for the last ten years than that of the money spent in the entire thirty years of war with LTTE. No president has wasted public money as this president has done. This president along with his extended family circle has wasted a huge amount of money that is unprecedented in the history of Sri Lanka. What is more is that MPs are making a big fortune out of these mega projects and it is not a secret that MRs are getting a huge amount of money as commission. This is the political culture that has been created by MR and co family in the country today. Is it not fair to object this injustice and waste of public money? I think that each and every Lankan with little bit of patriotism in the heart would vehemently object the attitudes of MR and co.
It is not my primary purpose to outline all those statistics how MR has wasted public money. Yet, today the corruption is vividly apparent in all government departments. While poor Lankans are suffering from economic hardship and even some people are literally starving to death in some part of the country MR and his cohorts are jolly riding in luxurious life: It is reported that his siblings have already got some asserts and houses in Europe and USA, It is no secret that racing cars are brought at the expenses of public money by sons of MR. It is no secret that that extended families of MR have accumulated a huge amount of wealth and assets within Sri Lanka and outside Sri Lanka as well. To be honest each and every Lankan should ask this simple question? Where did they get all this money and wealth?
Ten years back some of these MR family members were ordinary Sri Lankans without any significant wealth or assets and yet, today some of them are millionaires in Sri Lanka. It is very simple to know how they accumulated this huge of amount of money and wealth. It is the public money that they have looted from 20 million Sri Lankans. They used so called executive power vested on MR to accumulate this wealth. Otherwise did they win lotteries or did they inherit a fortune from their parents? Or did they own companies to make such huge amount of money within last 9 years. It is very much obvious that they have twisted Lankan constitution and executive power to make this fortune in a broad day light.
Now they have made enough money and fortune. The next step is how to preserve this wealth and how to pass on this wealth to his children. For that MR wants to win next election. To win forthcoming election MR spends a huge amount of money and even money bags are handed over to some people to buy votes. He managed to force some opposition MRs to cross over to his side with a huge amount of money. Today in Sri Lanka politics is not about political ideologies or principles rather it is money and wealth. With money and power MR could manage to buy many people. It is shame that MR has destroyed a decent political culture of this nation. It is shame to see some people with solid political ideologies and principle are still blindly supporting MR and his family domination for the greed of power and position.
Much has been said about the current political climate in Sri Lanka. There is no doubt in my mind that this time we will see a real change. I’m sure that if there is a genuine election without any corruption or inference from government the majority of people want to see a change in politics. They have had enough of MR’s family ruing in Sri Lanka. Why did many of his own cabinet members leave him? why do they take some risky steps in their life? They know well that this Man is a most corrupted political figure in Sri Lankan history. He manipulated constitution, bribed many people, and perverted the course of justice in many cases. Finally people who left him know well that MR wants to stay in power until he dies or one of his sons inherits him. This is the crafty plan of MR and family. This is very much obvious and even openly he asserts in public.
People with solid principles cannot work with such political dictators. They want to bring the country back to a full-fledged democracy. They are true patriotic who put national interest above personal interest. What we see in the politics of MR and co is that they put their personal interests over national interest. Today people in opposition take great risk for standing up against this political dictator and man of nepotism. They know well that if they fail they will be facing a difficult life ahead of them and yet, they stand for their policies. They stand for the national interest of this nation and they stand for democracy. They take all this risk for the people of this nation.
MR ha destroyed our political culture and Sri Lanka has a long democratic political tradition. In the past qualified people came forward to contest in election. Look at the people in parliament today and Look at the qualifications of some those who are behind MR and co. What basic qualifications do they have? Some of the MPs in parliament even do not have GCSE qualifications. Most of them are taken by MR into his fold. Drug dealers, robbers and killers are in this parliament today’. What sort of legislation these thugs can propose for people? Do not we have qualified people in Sri Lanka? What crime public have done to be ruled over by these thugs? Do not we need to have some sort of political reforms in this country?
What qualifications Basil and Goata, Namal and others have to do politics? They have USS citizenship and if they failed to win this election for their Big brother they wound run away to UAS? How can they trust them?
Do not we need some constructive political reformation in this country? Do not we need some academic and professional qualifications for the MPs we send into this parliament? Sri Lanka is one of best countries with rich human resources and highly educated people. Sri-Lankans are intelligent people they do not deserved to be treated like this by some political thugs. Let people choose their representatives as they like. Let qualified people come forward and do some constructive politics in the interest of nation, people and country not in the interest of family dynasty.
Look at people around MR. what can they do for the country. Have a cursory look at some of people around MR. Most of MPs around him are unqualified or do not have visionary thinking. I think in the interest of our nation more that 50% of people in parliament should be removed from their post and they should be sacked or sent home: most of them are useless or a burden to this country. They lead a luxury life with public money. A new generation of politicians from all communities should come forward to lead this nation. They can give a good leadership for this country in our modern age.
People with international exposure, with shrewd diplomatic and academic background should be nominated into parliament or elected. Look people like Aswer, Fouzi. Ataullah, Mervin Silva, Hezbollah, Abdul Kader, Karuna, Davanantha, and to name a few . People like these are a burden to our nation. They do not have basic qualifications to be legislators in this parliament. They do not have any professional or academic or legal backgrounds to serve this nation. They do no have skills and ability to debate and discuss a point in this parliament and why do we need to keep them in their post? Do not we have qualified people to replace them?
They’re so many people like this in our parliament. To be honest they should not be in parliament rather they should be doing their own business rather than damaging public interest of this nation. A political reform is a timely needed issue in Sri Lanka today Let us all Sinhalese., Tamils and Muslims as one family do something in this election and we all vote for M. Sirisena to see a change in politics and let the change starts with him. I do not have any ill feeling about any one and yet why should unqualified people go to parliament? What crime Sri Lanka people have done to be ruled by these unqualified people? I hope that MS will do some political reformation and people who are elected from national list should have some qualifications such as academic qualifications or diplomatic qualifications. Or professional qualifications. Our people need a good, vibrant, honest, intelligent, charismatic and patriotic leadership at all levels. Today politics in Sri Lanka is not communal issue rather it is a national issue and all community should think twice before they vote this time.
We all know that MR will do all his dirty tricks to win this election and yet, people should have determination and courage to bring about a political change and they should vote for their national interest not for the interest of one family at the expense of public interest.