( January 2, 2014, Geneva, Sri Lanka Guardian) We, who had to leave our country due oppressive political situations as well as other reasons and presently live abroad expresses our solidarity with the common opposition to defeat the Rajapaksa regime.
During the last 10 year, the Rajapaksa regime transformed Sri Lanka in to an authoritarian state.
- There is no Rule of Law in Sri Lanka today. Rajapaksa regime’s desire for unhindered executive power was symbolised by the abolishing the 17th Amendment which in turn politicised the Police and the Judiciary completely.
- While the Democratic Rights of the people have being trampled, an unprecedented fear psychosis has being enforced on the society. Media freedom which rely on the right to information of the citizens, has being clamped down officially and unofficially and forced to undergo a self-censorship.
- Rajapaksa regime has patronised the religious extreme groups which are destroying the values which are necessary for harmonies existence of different religions and believers.
- Rajapaksa regime has established a culture of corruption, elevated it to the levels never heard of by establishing and practising nepotism and crony capitalism by swindling the state coffers of its taxpayer’s money as well as country’s resources through corruption and fraud.
- While the political goons of the regime become rich day by day, the living standards of the general public getting worse day by day due the high cost of living.
- Instead of taking meaningful steps towards reconciliation and bringing peaceful environment to the country with the end of the war, country has being turned into a Police State systematically, specially keeping the North and East under military rule and expanding the militarization to the rest of the country.
- Even after 5 years of end of the war, the oppressive Rajapaksa regime has never shown an iota of interest nor paid any attention to start a process to bring out political solutions to reasonable issues of Tamil community through a political dialogue.
- The regime has deliberately avoided meaningful implementation of the core recommendations by its own Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) towards building good governance within the country in order to establish the human and democratic rights of the each and every citizen of this country. Instead it has only nurtured a Culture of Impunity.
- This regime has isolated our country from the international community by not adhering to internationally accepted norms and practises and also cultivated close relations with the leaders of the failed states, dictators and other corrupt leaders from the other parts of the world.
All these point to only one direction that the regime is moving, i.e. the suppression of people and their right.
Today we are reaching towards the historical moment to reverse this trend. That is to kick out this oppressive regime in the coming up Presidential Election on 08th January, 2015. For us the defeat of this regime means a creation of a democratic space for in Sri Lanka. And that is not just for one community, but all communities who live in there, for each and every citizen.
We also believe that it is crucial that the common opposition also address the particular issues faced by the Tamil and Muslim communities who are part and parcel of the sociopolitical body of Sri Lanka.
We also like to stress that democratic space which will be created by defeating this regime will not only beneficial for the Sinhalese community. This democratic space will defiantly provide an opportunity for Tamil and Muslim communities to seek better solutions to problems faced by them.
Hence we believe that this is an opportunity the minority communities should not miss and become partners of this broad coalition while maintaining their identity.
The greatest democratic challenge faced by Sri Lanka today is defeating the oppressive Rajapaksa regime which has trampled the rights of all peoples in Sri Lankan with its iron boots. Such a challenge can only be surmounted through a boarder coalition consisting of all opposition forces against this regime.
Abolition of the Executive Presidency, reimplementation of 17th Amendment as mentioned in the 100 day programme of the common opposition are first but crucial basic steps towards defeating this regime. But we also believe that the struggle for democratic reforms will and should not stop there. And that could be done only utilising the democratic space created by defeating this oppressive regime.
Therefore we believe at this juncture, it is imperative that all of us, who oppose the present regime, support the common opposition candidate, sidelining any political difference we may have.
We also extend our fullest cooperation to all those civil groups who are supporting and strengthening the democratic programme of the common opposition and working tirelessly to defeat this oppressive regime.
We also commit ourselves, individually and as well as networks to work closely and continuously to bring democratic reforms in the country. We also like to stress the importance of synergy between left and democratic forces of the country to make the democratic reforms a reality.
We also like to highlight here few salient points which need to be considered giving priority by all civil society actors in their actions towards democratic reforms once the Rajapaksa regime is defeated.
- Clearly establishing the separation of powers between Legislator, Executive and of Judiciary which is fundamental principle of democracy.
- Establishing the active participation of various civil society actors in democratic governance through “check and balance”, again a fundamental requirement of democratic governance.
- Build an ethical governance structure through civilised guiding principles of governance and specially take all necessary steps to stop nepotism and corruption.
- Stand and work for time bound dialogue process to find political solutions to legitimate issues of the Tamil community by engaging all parties concerned to reach common consensus.
- Act in creating a ethical media culture with public service at its helm involving all the media stake holders as well.
In this context taking the over determined issues in to our consideration and keeping the responsibility of creating a future civilised society as our priority, let us work towards the victory of opposition common candidate Maithripala Sirisena in order to create the democratic space and democratic governance in our country!
Defeat the Rajapaksa dictatorship!
Strengthen the struggle for democracy!
Create a civilised civil society!
1. A.C.K. Herath (Australia)
2. Ajith Dasanayake (Switzerland)
3. Ajith Rajapaksa (Australia)
4. Anver Manathunga (Quarter )
5. Arjuna Ranawana (Canada)
6. Balendra Thiruchittampalam (Germany)
7. Buddika Ranaweera (Italy)
8. Chadima Vithana (UK)
9. Chandrarathna Bandara (Canada)
10. Dilani Kokmaduwa (Italy)
11. Dimuth Deja (Germany)
12. Disnendra Perera (Switzerland)
13. Farook Sulaiman (UK)
14. Gamini Walisinghe (Australia)
15. Gulam R Dharann (Australia)
16. Jagath J Edirisinghe (Australia)
17. Janaka Priyantha (New Zealand)
18. Jayampathy Bulathsinghala. (Nepal)
19. Krishan Rajapaksha (Germany)
20. Krishna Subramania (Germany)
21. Kshama Ranawana (Canada)
22. Kumuduni Wijewardana (Nepal)
23. LAL PERERA (Australia)
24. Lional Bopage (Australia)
25. Mahroof Fauzar (UK)
26. Mendaka Abeysekera (USA)
27. Meril Ranaweera (Italy)
28. Nadarajah Kuruparan (UK)
29. Nadarajah Shanmugaratnam (Norway)
30. Nadarajah Suseenthiran (Germany)
31. Nagaluxmi Sivasamboo (France)
32. Nilantha Dahanak (New Zealand)
33. Percoius Croos (New Zealand)
34. Padmi Liyanage (Germany)
35. Poddala Jayantha (USA)
36. Priyantha Gunarathna (Nepal)
37. R.A.A U.Ranathunga (UK)
38. Ranjith Henayakaarchchi (Germany)
39. Rasika Perera (Canada)
40. Raveendran Pradeepan (France)
41. Ravindra Chandralal (USA)
42. Ruwan Nelu (Saudi Arabia)
43. Ruwandi Silva (Germany)
44. S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole (Australia)
45. S.Manoranjan(Ignasious Selliah) (Canada)
46. Sandaruwan Senadheera (UK)
47. Sanjeeva Manamperi (Australia)
48. Senaka Wattegedara (Germany)
49. Sivasamy Sivarajan (Germany)
50. Sunanda Deshapriya (Switzerland)
51. Udaya R. Thennakoon (Switzerland)
52. Vasuki Thangaraja (Germany)
53. Visuvalingam sivalingam (UK)
54. W. Jayakody (Australia)
(Please note that this is not issued by any organisation)