14 December, 2017

Blog

After NPC Elections – Where Does Rajapaksa Stand In The South ?

By Kusal Perera

Kusal Perera

There was plenty written about the NPC elections and the sweeping victory the Northern Tamil people registered at the only election that challenges the authority of centralised power in Colombo. There was hope, joy and caution noted by some on the declared results. Others advised and warned the TNA, as to how they should now behave. In fact across the Palk Straits, “The Hindu”  called the TNA “inexperienced” in a caption for a story on NPC elections. Some  told the TNA they should now learn to work with the Governor appointed by the President, as the elected council have no constitutional right to talk about who the Governor should be. The TNA should not, they said, provoke “unnecessary” (???) suspicion among the Sinhala South.

There had never been such advice, caution or warnings expressed and given free, when Chandrika Kumaranatunge was elected Chief Minister of the Western Province in 1994. She in fact was solid and straight on power sharing and complained during election campaigning that UNP governments have not been devolving power as they should. But not after she was elected President. After her election, she could have easily devolved all powers under the 13 Amendment, but did not. No different was she, to the UNP.

The two provincial council elections held along with the NPC on 21 September, for North-Western and Central Provinces, even if won by the opposition UNP (only  hypothetical), would never demand all due and legitimate powers under the 13th Amendment. They have no political understanding to set up a second tier governing system for the province they represent. UNP is devoid of a political culture that calls for democratic rule. For the UNP, the 13th Amendment is what gives them a chance to look after provincial party “catchers” who in turn think, they could jump from there to parliamentary politics. So is it with all political parties now. So is it with the JVP too that went on a bloody rampage against PCs in 1987 to 90 period.

That’s what made this election to the NPC a wholly different political exercise, 25 years and 05 months after the first provincial council elections were held in this country. Here in Sri Lanka, with heavy responsibility of meeting socio-economic and political needs of the Tamil people who survived a brutal 03 decade war, the TNA is clear in what they would want. They will not in any way stand for “separation” they have said.

They were involved in post war North-East politics, contested LG elections two years ago and they read the “pulse of their people” better than all other Tamil theoreticians across the sea. The Vadukkodai Resolution in 1974 and the electoral mandate for a separate Thamil State at the 1977 general elections are therefore not to be carried on shoulder, after the river had been crossed to tread a different political landscape. In fact the Vadukkodai resolution and the electoral mandate for a “Separate Tamil State” in 1977 was dropped by the TULF leadership under Amirthalingam in 1981, when they compromised with Jayawardne for District Development Councils (DDC). The present Tamil leadership as the TNA proves, would look for the future and not for a past that was too bloody and savage for the ordinary Tamil people to sustain. A past therefore, the Tamil people in Sri Lanka would wish to forget as soon as possible for peace and personal security. Economic growth ? Accountability ? War crimes ? Yes, but the first two issues remain top  priorities and THE most important requirements to continue life.

The TNA manifesto therefore had been carefully crafted to detail how far the TNA would go in their quest for power sharing, to find answers for the most pressing problems of their own people on ground, with an assurance given for a single country under a single Constitution. They nevertheless retained the right for self determination to rule themselves in an autonomous merged North-East, they say, as spelled out in the 2002 December Oslo Declaration. They need land and police powers under the 13th Amendment, to begin with and a guarantee, civil administration in the area would be established without hindrance.

A closer association of the TNA manifesto would reveal, they have not deviated from “Thimpu Principles”, agreed among all Tamil political parties and armed youth groups in 1985. Written as “four cardinal principles”, the last one no more applicable with all the Indian origin Tamils given citizenship by now, the TNA has crafted into their manifesto that Tamils are a nation, that they have an identified birthplace as North-East provinces and therefore, they would enjoy the right of self determination as a Tamil nation. It is therefore the political manifesto of the TNA and no shopping list for elections.

It is a double layered political document, a political “prospectus”. One, it spells out what the Tamil people represented by the TNA in the new NPC would want for them. A civil administration, a civilian as the Governor, police and land powers and everything else the 13 Amendment incorporates as constitutionally available for provincial rule. Two, it provides the basis, the framework on which TNA would sit for discussions in finding a permanent answer to the political aspirations of the Tamil people as a nation, with a birthplace, enjoying the right for self determination.

Where does this Rajapaksa regime fit in ? Can President Rajapaksa sit for discussions on any of those the TNA has in its manifesto ? Rajapaksas and their henchmen had it very clear. “No land and police powers and no more improving on power sharing. The 13 Amendment can not be given in full. What is there for all other PCs will be there for the North as well.” What ties President Rajapaksa down, to this hard line Sinhala position ?

This needs to be openly said about Sinhala politics, first. All those 1.4 million votes, the UPFA polled in the North-Western and Central PC elections, should not be read as Sinhala votes for a leader who won the war against the LTTE. Beyond Western Province, the rural voter reacts not as Sinhala nationalists, but reacts to local political power. They submit themselves most humiliatingly to the visually larger of the local politician, they see as closest to State power. This regime has pushed out old SLFP supporters and families out of party influence and from active politics. Instead the regime has created a new political network in the electorates laid out with young, uncultured rogue elements brought to Local Government bodies and has affiliated them to State power and to numerous State funded projects. With all crimes and corruption rampant in local politics, the regime has changed the local culture and made the poor to live within power politics.

This now has very little to do with “Sinhala nationalism” in rural society, the academics theorise about. So is massive numbers of preference votes raked in with millions of rupees by those who jump over to the UPFA. Their romping home victorious and high on the list too, is clearly on their projection of power close to the President and the ruling family. This has little to do with Sinhala politics, except that the regime is a Sinhala regime.

Confirmed Sinhala nationalists who fielded candidates on the UPFA lists have been badly weeded out even in this election. Weerawansa, a champion of anti PCs and anti 13th Amendment was badly let down by the rural Southern voter, with all his nominees loosing. If the rural voter who voted UPFA to power in PCs were Sinhala chauvinists, these confirmed Sinhala chauvinists can not be left out defeated, en bloc. None who opposed the regime as confirmed Sinhala chauvinists and racists were considered politically valid by the rural voter. The JVP and the other war hero Fonseka proves their Sinhala nationalist politics are no serious attractions for rural voter, entrenched in corrupt, local power politics.

Sinhala chauvinism is a Sinhala business and trader community phenomenon. It was proved so, in both the 1915 anti Muslim riots and the 1983 July Tamil pogrom. This is evident with the JHU vote base in the Western Province and that too in and around Colombo. The JHU after its hectic protests in Colombo against negotiations with the LTTE and the Norwegian brokered cease fire, fielded Buddhists monks at the 2004 elections. They managed 03 MPs from Colombo, 02 from Gampaha and 01 from Kalutara districts, out of the 08 elected. The other 02 were from Kandy and Nuwara Eliya districts. In predominantly Sinhala Buddhist districts like Moneragala (JHU – 01.4%), Hambantota (JHU – 0.5%), Anuradhapura (JHU – 02.2%) and Polonnaruwa (JHU – 01.3%) they were simply wiped out, despite being Buddhist monks on an exclusively Sinhala racist platform.

This urban Sinhala business and trader presence in politics is evident in how the BBS gets on the streets often in and around Maharagama. They in fact held their much hyped convention in Maharagama. Their mass rally in Galle town was a failure. The Sinhala business and trader community is what provides these very lean and sectarian racist groups an exceptionally amplified voice in the media. One glaring example in how the media creates larger than life Sinhala chauvinists was in Alles’s English daily “Ceylon Today” on Tuesday, after PC elections. A small racist clan “Ravana Balaya” (RB), led by a Buddhist monk was given almost half the front page with a thick, bold headline that said, “Ravana Balaya On The War Path”. The news report said the RB head monk threatened mass-scale countrywide agitation, if the government fully implemented the 13th Amendment and vested full powers with the Northern Provincial Council (NPC). This monk and his RB could only gather a few dozen child Bikkhus in a crowd of not more than a hundred, to protest in front of the Colombo UN office against Navi Pillai‘s visit. Yet, gets half the front page and its main headline.

That being plain Sinhala politics on the ground, if the defence establishment is kept out of political decision making, Rajapaksa will not be that hard pressed to turn the wheels around. That being how strong Sinhala nationalists are, it should not be difficult now, for the TNA leadership to push Rajapaksa to negotiate and compromise, if Rajapaksa leaves his defence authorities out of politics. But the war delivered a bloody battle hardened military establishment that is now being used for politics by this regime and is into the economy as well. This was inevitable in how the savage war was rolled out. The political academics and Sinhala pundits did not want to accept the war would establish such a monster regime backed by a battle hardened military, as the sole product of a savage and brutal war.

All doctoral studies on political science, all professionalism in different disciplines argued for the Rajapaksas as pious Sinhala Buddhists who would not rob the people of “democracy”. They  guaranteed democracy and development, post war. When extra judicial killings, abductions, arbitrary arrests, para military operations, crackdown on media and journalists were raised, they said, “Look, these can not be avoided.” There is a price to pay when fighting the most ruthless terrorist outfit in the world, they growled. “Once the LTTE is eliminated, you will have freedom and democracy” they kept telling us. Following up on such cranky logic, there are proud arguments now to say, Vigneswaran would not have even contested, had the LTTE stayed in that part of the land. Had there been a serious political will and a vision in the South to negotiate a decent and an honourable answer for Tamil political aspirations long suppressed, there still would have been no LTTE, plus a rich bonus. There would have been no bloody, savage war either, to talk about.

But now, that war and its post war politics is what plays deterrent to any possible resolving of this continuing conflict. The TNA is left with that politics to flex muscles in committee rooms and negotiating tables. Its no hide and seek and there is no difficulty in identifying who the “naughty boy” is. See how the Secretary to the MoD pops up on anything that has to be answered by the political regime on 13th Amendment or devolution. See how the media, both local and foreign, run to him for comments and views on anything that is “Tamil” or “Muslim”. See how he contradicts even ministers on issues, totally political. And now see, if he had ever been warned or contradicted by President Rajapaksa as the all powerful Executive or as the Defence Minister, under whom the Secretary to the ministry is only a public servant as any other ministry secretary is.

The hard line projection of this defence authority that has been working overtime to have the military leadership entrenched in powerful and influential positions with a threatening presence, has created a social withdrawal from making public decisions, now capitalised by the Rajapaksa regime. This leaves the regime that can not deliver on anything for the larger Sinhala society, wholly dependent on the defence establishment. This dependency was played out, each time more sinister than the previous time, in Katunayake on 30 May, 2011 and on 01st August this year in Rathupaswela. For a regime that is inefficient and into mega frauds and corruption, dependency on the military establishment is more a rule than a norm. We are therefore now, halfway towards the “Mil-bus” power in Pakistan. Halfway into Saddam Hussein’s repressive Bhathist regime. And halfway into Iranian religious autocracy. In the absence of an Opposition in the South that would stand for demilitarisation, democracy, devolution and development as completely different to the Rajapaksas, we are yet to evolve into a new “home grown” authoritarian model as Rajapaksa would wish to have. 

The issue therefore is, how the TNA would meet this challenge of driving a political wedge between President Rajapaksa and the defence authority led by his own brother. How Rajapaksa could be turned into the pragmatic politician that Prabhakaran said he saw in Rajapaksa (Read VP’s 2005 Maavir Day speech). One advantage the TNA still has, is the CHOGM that’s only one month and two weeks away. Can they drive Rajapaksa desperate to sit with them, before the early November CHOGM ? Can they get Rajapaksa to sit and talk practical politics ? CHOGM is now a factor for both Rajapaksa and TNA.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 0
    0

    While everyone is talking about the NPC no one is talking about the fate of the opposition in the face of the southern electorate continuing to vote overwhelmingly for the ruling regime. So, when will Mangala’s Sri Lankan spring take place? In 2030? With his band of web page boys on the net?

    A more realistic and pertinent question for politics for the South will be how can they drive a political wedge between President Rajapaksa and the defence authority led by his own brother.

    • 0
      0

      Brilliant Kusal!
      Excellent article that diagnoses the malaise among the Sinhalaya Modaya and their ROTTEN political culture, which will in the final analysis be rescued by northern Tamil.

      IT is to be hoped the north province can now bring some sanity to the political circus here and set an example of good governance and development that radiates from the Northern province to the corrupt Sinhalay and Muslim dominated Colombo political center.

      Northern Tamils have shown the Rajapassa military dictatorship with its facade of democracy – where to get off! This is the BIGGEST slap in the face to Rajapassa and has given him notice that there will be a place and time when he and his family and their military machines will be DEFEATED BY A LANDSLIDE.

      Unlike the cowardly Muslims and Sinhalaya modayas – including the UNP headed by the corrupt clown Ranil Wickramasinghe (who has got to resign or be HOUNDED OUT not just of the UNP but the country), and the dead leftists – northern Tamils have shown that they are not impressed by the corrupt and nepotistic Rajapassa Sinhala Buddhist military business model of “development”.

      • 0
        0

        Good points Kusal on Ceylon Today which is playing a dangersou game – religious politics to boost sales by giving Balu sena and Ravana Balu sena extensive coverage and whipping up racist politics – a piece of trash good to wipe Gota’s ass!

        Also the diagnosis of the village level patronage systems that Rajapassa brothers have built with criminal elements and mis-use of DiviNeguam (poverty alleviation) funds to marginalize the old SLFP.. THe Sinhalalya modayas in their bucolic villages – with the weva, Dageba and field have not got a clue as to what good governance is. They think nepotism and patronage networks of local criminals is good governance.. and UNP is no better it seems.. Rajapassa is also sysematically de-developing education to keep the ignorant SInhala majority as ignorant as he is – albeit diabolically!

    • 0
      0

      I thin we should Rajapkses more.

      When I read CT, I can understand what things are going on against Sinhala buddhists by Tamils and their cohorts of the Church.

      I am pretty sure, Mahinda Rajapakse will be the President for a third time.

      • 0
        0

        Jim Sooty,
        ex Punchi Banda now living in East London after caliming asylum
        pretending to have helped the LTTE and now wanted by Gotha. You coward.
        Who cares how many times MR is elected but definitely no more after March 2014 because he will be flown to the Hague for War Crimes Trials. You can go by Eurostar from Waterloo.

  • 0
    0

    Thanks Kusal,

    “This needs to be openly said about Sinhala politics, first. All those 1.4 million votes, the UPFA polled in the North-Western and Central PC elections, should not be read as Sinhala votes for a leader who won the war against the LTTE. Beyond Western Province, the rural voter reacts not as Sinhala nationalists, but reacts to local political power.”

    I hope Tamil political leadership gets this message – that Sinhalese nationalist extremism is primarily a Western Province and urban phenomenon. You have highlighted for the first time in the CT the rejection of these extremists in the recent PC elections. It would be of interest to you that the Tamil press gave publicity to this fact and yesterday’s MTV news listed the names of the large number of sitting members including one time provincial council ministers who lost their seats. Ominous signs of what is to come to many sitting members of the present parliament. Sycophancy and arrogance of power does not pay in the long run and we can depend on the voters to throw them out. It has happened several times in this country since 1956.

    One does not deny that there are Tamil extremists in the north, who indulge in Tamil nationalist rhetoric. But apparently did not poll high. It would be wise for the leadership to play down the rhetoric and focus on a clean and efficient administration. It is yet to be seen how the many new faces in northern politics perform. A new generation of professionals has won including three doctors and four retired education officers. Justice Wigneswaran has announced that committees of five PC members will be formed to support and contribute to the work of each minister. A fresh wind is blowing over the north. Give it a chance.

    Silan Kadirgamar

  • 0
    0

    It may be correct to say that,

    “that Sinhalese nationalist extremism is primarily a Western Province and urban phenomenon.”

    But I don’t think Kusal is right when he says,

    “This needs to be openly said about Sinhala politics, first. All those 1.4 million votes, the UPFA polled in the North-Western and Central PC elections, should not be read as Sinhala votes for a leader who won the war against the LTTE. Beyond Western Province, the rural voter reacts not as Sinhala nationalists, but reacts to local political power.”

    Well, people who vote in local elections and national level elections both relate to those who yield local political power as it is they who act as patrons for local people.

    But how can one say that the rural vote base is not nationalist? look at the MPs they have sent to the parliament after the war was over.

    Also, let us not underestimate Mahinda Rajapakse’s ability to win elections in the south. Not merely ’cause he won the war. He is also “our own” leader from among the ordinary people for the first time in the history. So called ‘development’ is another factor. Sinhalese have bought into the development discourse in a major way ’cause unlike the northerners Sinahlese were not at the butt-end of the war compared to the Tamils and they have been exposed to the market for a long time unlike the northerners who could not enjoy the market due to the war.

    The opposition in the South should not console itself by giving various excuses. Fighting for democracy in a genuine way winning the hearts and minds of the people is the only way to change the regime. There should be a genuine citizens’ politics. Waiting for the regime to ripe and drop into one’s lap it won’t work. If Fonskea surpasses the UNP which of course is a very long shot, it will be due to arrogant behaviour of people like Mangala and Ranil and they will have to take responsibility.

  • 0
    0

    “One does not deny that there are Tamil extremists in the north, who indulge in Tamil nationalist rhetoric. But apparently did not poll high. ” Apparently…..? The election results are out. Which party or individuals are you talking about, mate?

  • 0
    0

    Mr Kusal,MR is a political animal.He will play his cards accordingly.In the meantime you guys can dream,dream,dream!

  • 0
    0

    ‘See how the Secretary to the MoD pops up on anything that has to be answered by the political regime on 13th Amendment or devolution. See how the media, both local and foreign, run to him for comments and views on anything that is “Tamil” or “Muslim”………………..’

    This government delivered the peace and committed itself to protect our unitary state and have no intention of risking another no go area in SL where any threat to this condition may flourish. Secretary GR has the overriding say on matters of national security and it will not be reliquished anytime soon. Accept that and proceed with the business at hand.

  • 0
    0

    ‘The issue therefore is, how the TNA would meet this challenge of driving a political wedge between President Rajapaksa and the defence authority led by his own brother.’…………….

    Good try, but no cigar! That is not the way to go. Those elected to forward the aspirations of the Tamils would be well advised to chart a pragmatic approach based on the ‘possible’ given that MR himself is chained to several balls that prevents him doing whatever he likes. The last thing the newly elected should do is try some of the failed strategies of yester year. What was it? Madness is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

  • 0
    0

    Kusul can’t be serious about Rajapaksa sitting down with LTTE prox Sambandan to sign a private treaty to give him the Titles to land and the TNA Police Force.

    UNP PC members of the “non Chauvinist Sinhala Vellalas” , Real Vellala and the Anglican heartland ,the WP want Ranil Wickremasinghe to resign from the Leadersip immedeately.e let alone both

    Ranil never said Yes to Sambandan,even on one, let alone both demands although he was on the hustings in the former LTTE turf handing out how to vote cards .

    And his Team got demoloished in both NWP and the CP.

    Does the WP UNP Team expect the same, if Rajapaksa decides to hold a sort of a referendum asking the “Vellalas” whether they like to settle in the Sambandan territory and be protected by the TNA police?.

    • 0
      0

      THere you go again with your Vellalas. You have to take castor oil regularly!

  • 0
    0

    I do not, for a moment, think the TNA can drive a political wedge between Gota and the President because what Gota says aloud is what the President thinks and believes.The President and the Defence Secretary wanted to dilute the 13th amendment but had to abandon the attempt when India said an international agreement could not be amended unilaterally.
    There is no doubt that the President is not for power devolution.It well could be one of the reasons that there was no closeness between him and Chandrika who tried her best to bring a political solution to the national question alone with the abolition of executive presidency through a new constitution which was sabotaged by the UNP. I never ever blame Chandrika for her mistakes because she was the only national leader who made a sincere attempt to find a solution to the national question through devolution of power to the periphery .

  • 0
    0

    It is now clear the Wigneswaran-Sumanthiran-Sampanthan trio is bent upon hijacking Tamil peoples’ verdict (Tamil Elam) to serve the genocidal agenda of New Delhi, Washington and Colombo.

    They talked about Tamil Elam before the election but now they are in bed with the Rajafucksas!!

    Tamils have been fooled YET AGAIN!! :)

    Very easy to fool Tamils. DSS, SWRDB, Dudley, Sirima, JR, Premathasa, CBK, Runnil, MR all fooled Tamils.

    Typical politicians.

    • 0
      0

      Let’s see whom can deceive who.

  • 0
    0

    “The issue therefore is, how the TNA would meet this challenge of driving a political wedge between President Rajapaksa and the defence authority led by his own brother.”
    Even primary school children of China are taught what is dividing and ruling from the history of dynasties. SL Tamils are also aware of the immense help they have given to their fellow countrymen the Sinhalese in the struggle for independence and what they received in return. It’s pertinent of me to say that we got independence thanks to the 2 million Indians who gave their lives fighting from Brussels to Burma in the European war known as WW2 and UK was blitzed. Therefore don’t bet on a wedge between M&G as the three brothers know well any infighting will be the family downfall for ever. SL was able to get international support due to a world event 9/11 and LK’s assassination (who done it??) Rajapassa and familial is there for life stuffing boxes for another 30 years unless there is a world event or when Mr clean Modi becomes PM of India.
    “How Rajapaksa could be turned into the pragmatic politician that Prabhakaran said he saw in Rajapaksa “
    What he saw was his mirror image- another terrorist dictator.

  • 0
    0

    I beg to differ with Kadirgamar’s conclusion “Sinhalese nationalist extremism is primarily a Western Province and urban phenomenon…”
    It is far more entrenched in the larger rural Sinhala electorate.
    There is greater liberalism and acceptance of the justification of the
    Tamil struggle in the WP and urban areas. Even the extremist Sinhala youth are coming out with a better appreciation of injustices to Tamils.

    Rajapakse held PC elections in the Central and NWP not because the people in those areas clamoured for it or against the ruling CM/team.
    It was to show the world he held 3 PC elections and won 2. In other words to prove he is still popular with the people. The usual
    self-deception of the mendacious Rajapakses that does not sell in the
    region or the world.

    Thamilthambi

  • 0
    0

    The regime does what it wants by hook or by crook. Democracy and devolution is a neccesary evil for them forced by the international community. Read what MR said at the UNGA.

    As far as the south is concerned there is no opposition. They have all been systematically demolished by bribing, coercing or incarcerating. Media is under control, so is the Judiciary and Legislature, what more. And last but not least is the Ranil factor, where the regime has a staunch ally in the seat of the opposition leader who enjoys all the perks of a govt minister.

    The rural voter in the south can be convinced by development works like infrastructure, vehicles and jobs. They have been starved for so long as to see a good road or own a vehicle is like a breath of fresh air.

    The people in the North voted for TNA because the govt and military have been harrassing and depriving them for the last four years. North has become a tourist destination for people in the south to visit in droves to see for themselves how the animal was controlled and killed. Resentment has built up against the regime. No one likes to be an object of exhibition.

  • 0
    0

    We agree that 78.48% people in the Northern Province have voted the TNA who contested NP council elections under the house symbol of the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) and got thirty of the thirty-eight seats. I bet if TNA had contested Wellawatta the same way it might have got even 90%.

    Anyway, I have no argument that the said voters have voted against the government effort on development. They have voted for Eelam rhetoric that the TNA yelled at their election platforms. So much so, the UK TamilNews reported that ‘GTF [rump LTTE] calls upon the Tamil diaspora to Help The TNA Achieve The Best Possible Victory.’

    What does that mean; when I asked a Diaspora Tamil, he said now that TNA got more than 2/3rd of the vote of Northern Tamils, that’s a mandate for separation and therefore they’ll work toward’s it. As for us, I told him that NP is a part of Sri Lanka and not a special province and there is no asymmetric powers being devolved to any province. I also told him that the president had openly said that ‘Police and Land powers’ will not be handed over to any province. Moreover I said that MR has laid the foundation to withhold it legally. See, RanilW will never be elected to do his pet project ever.

    Writing to promote Eelam, PTOMS, Federal and the like is what Kusal is paid for these days by neocolonialists’ NGOs.

  • 0
    0

    There is an important question, the 13th amendment merged Northern and Eastern provinces and subsequently due to a legal judgement they were split. In this instance the government accepted the judgement from the courts. But when Chief Justice Shirani was removed and the courts ordered that it was illegal, the government did not listen to this court ruling. This is double standard followed by the government. So why should no one else say that North and the East should not be merged? If the government can violate the ruling of a court so can others.

    Secondly, the percentage of votes UPFA got from the total number of votes compared to the percentage of votes the ITAC (TNA) got in the only PC they contested based on number of votes, is much lower. This shows that voters like TNA more then the voters who voted in the other two PCs.

    At the UN speech yesterday Rajapakse did not mention anything about the 13th amendment or the full implementation of it either. But he mentioned about the Northern PC election. Which means he in fact accepted the law of the land and the constitution which has the 13th amendment. Hence he has to fully implement the 13th amendment. If he does not follow through this can become an impeachable offence. Further in the eyes of the world he has been proven number of times as a liar. He does not need a similar branding again.

    Further Obama not inviting Rajapakse for the Civil Society Round Table and inviting Pakyasothi Saravanamuthu in the shadow of the UN session is a slap on President’s face. This should not have happened. This shows how weak our foreign policy and the minister GLP is. Its time the President takes into account such signals that are thrown at Sri Lanka and amend the ways of the government.

    The pressure to the government and the President is stronger from outside than inside the country. This is mostly because of the curtailment of the democratic activities by the regime and brain washing the masses. But the pressure from outside cannot be controlled by military or para military groups. The longer it takes to realize this and solve the issues its going to give more ammunition to the diaspora to collect money and spread the LTTE ideas. So sooner the President moves to bring about a democratic rule and install democratic institutions the better for him and for the country.

  • 0
    0

    The Southern ‘gam battas’ are behind the Rajapakses 100%. They will support them regardless of MR or Gota being President.

  • 0
    0

    Brilliant Kusal.

    At this moment, with the IC breathing down the neck of the GOSL, perhaps Rajapaksa needs the TNA most.
    Interesting times are ahead of us. The die is cast.

  • 0
    0

    There will be an END for everything. Be it Rajapsakse’s rule or Sonia’s.
    Rulers and dictators come and go as nothing is permanent. Kusal as always, done a good analysis of every one and everything in his usual unbiased way. I wish we had more of Kusal kinds among us. It’s sad to see Some of our readers do not appreciate or agree with his honest, sincere and responsible writings. No matter what, he is one of the best and truthful columnist in today’s Sri Lanka. I salute him for his brave, straight forward, educative and non-vested opinions. May god bless him with long healthy life, happiness and peace…

  • 0
    0

    Kusal,

    What you have written is little bit of history and a few thoughts for the future. But in todays Sri Lankan context the message coming out of the Elections is that there is a North South Divide and under MR the Country has become more polarised than before. We need a total sea change of attitude by the Majority if we are to have any chance of a lasting peace.
    The Tamils in the North voted for Autonomy and the Sinhalese in the South have voted for more of the Same.

    ” The Hindu” called the TNA “inexperienced” in a caption for a story on NPC elections. Some told the TNA they should now learn to work with the Governor appointed by the President, as the elected council have no constitutional right to talk about who the Governor should be. The TNA should not, they said, provoke “unnecessary” (???) suspicion among the Sinhala South”

    What the Hindu says is all speculation and they are not the decision makers. The Sinhalese electorate have been given a message in no uncertain terms and they have to respect the will of the Northern Electorate.
    The Sinhalese have to accept that there are two ethnic groups in Sri Lanka and the Tamil aspirations have to be met and the Northern Province is a Separate entity and devolution of power to the Sinhalese Provinces cannot be compared to the devolution of power to the North.

    The 13th Amendment is just a starting point and we have a long way to go before we achieve parity.
    TNA have said They will not in any way stand for “separation”.

    Separation can happen in two ways:
    a) Total Separation as two Nations
    b) An autonomous Tamil State within a State but the choice rests with the Majority.

    ****The TNA manifesto therefore had been carefully crafted to detail how far the TNA would go in their quest for power sharing, to find answers for the most pressing problems of their own people on ground, with an assurance given for a single country under a single Constitution. They nevertheless retained the right for self determination to rule themselves in an autonomous merged North-East, they say, as spelled out in the 2002 December Oslo Declaration. They need land and police powers under the 13th Amendment, to begin with and a guarantee, civil administration in the area would be established without hindrance.

    People have commented before the elections and have even accused the TNA that it was a LLTE manifesto. Frankly if you deviate from what the LTTE stood for you will do so at your peril and there is no getting away from that. The legacy of Prabakaran will live for some time to come and the sooner we come to terms the better.

    You are right about the following It is therefore the political manifesto of the TNA and no shopping list for elections.

    ****It is a double layered political document, a political “prospectus”. One, it spells out what the Tamil people represented by the TNA in the new NPC would want for them. A civil administration, a civilian as the Governor, police and land powers and everything else the 13 Amendment incorporates as constitutionally available for provincial rule. Two, it provides the basis, the framework on which TNA would sit for discussions in finding a permanent answer to the political aspirations of the Tamil people as a nation, with a birthplace, enjoying the right for self determination.

    I also wholeheartedly echo the above sentiment and that is the minimum we Tamils demand and that is not an UNREASONABLE EXPECTATION to keep the country together.

    “Where does this Rajapaksa regime fit in ? Can President Rajapaksa sit for discussions on any of those the TNA has in its manifesto ? Rajapaksas and their henchmen had it very clear. “No land and police powers and no more improving on power sharing. The 13 Amendment can not be given in full. What is there for all other PCs will be there for the North as well.” What ties President Rajapaksa down, to this hard line Sinhala position ?”

    Rajapakse is in a fix and he is not going to agree to TNA demand and that brings him in to conflict with India.
    I am surprised at the ruling by the Sri Lanka Supreme Court which amounts to Unilateral interpretation of the 13th Amendment and SUPREAMCY OF SRI LANKAN Law.

    The following might help readers to understand the problems MR will face in sticking to his Guns without consulting India applying the 13th Amendment as he sees fit.

    Precedence of European law

    According to the precedence principle, European law is superior to the national laws of Member States. The precedence principle applies to all European acts with a binding force. Therefore, Member States may not apply a national rule which contradicts to European law.

    ***The issue therefore is, how the TNA would meet this challenge of driving a political wedge between President Rajapaksa and the defence authority led by his own brother. How Rajapaksa could be turned into the pragmatic politician that Prabhakaran said he saw in Rajapaksa (Read VP’s 2005 Maavir Day speech). One advantage the TNA still has, is the CHOGM that’s only one month and two weeks away. Can they drive Rajapaksa desperate to sit with them, before the early November CHOGM ? Can they get Rajapaksa to sit and talk practical politics ? CHOGM is now a factor for both Rajapaksa and TNA.

    I think you are being too complimentary to TNA about their prowess following their thumping victory but that was only a provincial election they don’t have any influence to drive a wedge between MR and the defence authority. They feed on each other as they have a common agenda.

    I agree with your second analysis and yes TNA can take advantage of the forthcoming CHOGM and force MR to sit down with them quoting Manmohan Singh who is yet to make up his mind about his participation. He has said that he is waiting to see tangible evidence that GOSL intend to genuinely devolve power to the North before he decides to attend. If he decides not to attend it will amount to humiliation especially after sending G.L.P to invite personally a luxury which was not extended to even her Majesty

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 300 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically shut off on articles after 10 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.