12 August, 2022

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An Open Letter & Appeal To The IMF

By Senthil Nadarajah –

Dr. Senthil Nadarajah

I am writing this open letter to the International Monitory Fund (IMF) as a tax-paying United States (US) citizen and former Sri Lankan. Copy of this letter will be sent to the US Under Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs Mr. Andrew P. Baukol who is the acting Governor representing the US in the IMF. I am aware about the talks for bailing out Sri Lanka from bankruptcy that include creditors’ representatives Clifford Chance and others now shifted to Singapore.

I am also very much aware that neither the IMF, the World Bank, nor their sponsoring countries have any business in meddling with the domestic politics of other countries (mostly), however given the role of the US as the largest stakeholder within the IMF, my own status as a former Sri Lankan who was forced to flee due to the war and the IMF’s commitment to democracy and transparency, I believe it is appropriate and acceptable for me to ask the IMF for accountability and the wise spending of every penny they lend towards the planned bailout of Sri Lanka.

As you are most likely aware, the Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe, during the most recent parliamentary election, was nominated to represent his party, and was not directly elected by the people. This nomination was allowed by the Sri Lankan constitution under proportional representation even though his party earned less than 3% of the vote of people.

To reiterate, his election campaign in the Year 2020 was rejected by the people outright – both by the former leadership of his own party and his constituents. His Party had only secured a mere 2.15% of the national vote, which allowed him to be nominated to the lonely seat allocated to the United National Party. In summary, he was not elected by the people but he hitchhiked himself into the Parliament using an undemocratic flaw in the constitution.

Afterwards, former President, an accused war criminal, appointed Ranil Wickremesinghe to the position of Prime Minister, because the previous government resigned after bankrupting Sri Lanka. Ranil Wickremesinghe is a friend of the former President and his family which controlled the previous government. The former President run away from the country, resigned in exile and now a fugitive.

He is Parliament’s President, not the People’s President

Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe is a legally elected president by the parliament and hence he is considered the President of the current Parliament regardless of undemocratic flaws in Sri Lankan constitution that allowed his opportunity.

The people of Sri Lanka rejected all current Members of the Parliament (MPs) who bankrupted the country. Instead of resigning from the Parliament, these MPs elected Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe, who was rejected by the people in election, as the President of the country. The current MPs have vested interests in slowing or stopping any anticipated corruption investigations. Corruption is one of the primary factors caused bankruptcy of Sri Lanka. Therefore, I request the IMF to demand complete and thorough corruption investigation against all accusations as a precondition for any bailout approval.

Another reason for MPs to elect Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe instead of resigning is to remain in office for another two years, so that they can secure their pension which is a larger amount in Sri Lankan standard. The Sri Lankan constitution requires MPs to hold their employment for five years continuously in order to qualify for pension. Therefore, those who have not completed their five-year term wholeheartedly elected Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe regardless of political affiliation. Therefore, I request the IMF to insist Sri Lanka to change the law so that, the entire Parliament must resign under any of the following situations with retrospective applicability:

* The country declared bankruptcy.

* The President and the cabinet resigned within a stipulated short period, for example within three months.

Selective Amnesia and Retroactive Interference

When the Sri Lankan Civil War broke out, all transportation to Jaffna (Northern Sri Lanka, Tamil/ethnic minority stronghold) was cut off or bombed and destroyed (the train services in particular), and the electricity was cut off, Northerners lived in total darkness and endured hardship to travel to Colombo to conduct any business activities under the centralized government.

After the Civil War ended in 2009, electricity and train services were restored to the North. When people asked about the situation, the government had one standard pre-written answer: “everything is back to normal, see the train is running and we have electricity.”

Coming back to 2022, after bankruptcy the people’s upraising (Aragalaya) started as spontaneous protest after each and every house – regardless of their job, income, or location within the country – were faced with a shortage of food, fuel and cooking gas, and medications. The People’s uprising has demanded the elimination of Corruption, Nepotism/wastage by the government, and for new leadership which has no vested interest in the politics of re-election.

The uprising was nick-named “Gota Go Home” as it implied that the former President of Sri Lanka Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa came from the United States and asked him to leave. It also demanded that all the other Rajapaksas who held ministerial or parliamentary positions to leave the government. In addition, the people asked an interim government which would include a ruling council run by professionals and academics who would have collaborated with the IMF efficiently.

The people demanded Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe to resign when he was appointed as the Prime Minister by former President, so that a new system would have been in-place to work with IMF. Once elected, Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe ordered the military to crush the people’s uprising. The military and police assaulted the people including attorneys and journalists including a BBC journalist. Many ambassadors, including the US, EU, UN condemned the assault, and the US ambassador met the President Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe sternly told him this is not acceptable.

However, ultimately, the same bunch of former ministers have been reappointed. Now the people have to focus on their safety with no end to the gas queues and no chance of overcoming misery to sustain their day-to-day livelihoods.

Austerity Measures

I am aware of the austerity measures that the IMF is requesting from Sri Lanka. There will and must not be any complete bailout, but the current government and MPs will be mostly focused on their re-election. Because of the focus on re-election and perception of impact of these austerity measures, it is unlikely that any such measures will be actually implemented.

The money of the IMF will either be embezzled or given away via costly, unnecessary social programs that are started/refunded to turn the attention of the people away from Parliamentary fiscal mismanagement.

Due to these situations, as a United States tax-payer and given the role of the US as the IMF’s largest financial contributor and plurality stakeholder, I am requesting that the IMF:

* Do not lend any money as long as the current administration in office.

* Only lend money to Sri Lanka, after electing a new Parliament for next five years.

Although it is true that holding elections might not completely solve the problem as many of the current corrupt MPs will likely be re-elected, more likely the new Parliament will implement proper austerity measures. Most importantly however, is that the new Parliament will also have a popular mandate.

Weakness of People’s Uprising (Aragalya)

Aragalya started as spontaneous protest due to the inept and corrupt government of former President of Sri Lanka Gotabaya Rajapaksa. However, this uprising failed to address the ways forward to deal with the corruption in an effective manner as well as the alternative measures to overcome the bankruptcy. There exists a current power vacuum that Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe has manipulated towards his favor, using the current constitution.

The people’s uprising failed to present an effective and alternative leadership or a council of professionals who could formulate a plan and negotiate with creditors and the IMF for a smooth exit strategy and economic restoration.

This has led to Sri Lankans being in a quagmire with a leadership vacuum where no one has any solutions, but simply empty promises.

What Must Be Done

The IMF should only allow a bridging finance for a period of 3 to 6 month where:

1. Temporarily restore the shortage of essential items such as food, fuel and cooking gas and medicines

2. Draft a new constitution that will be inclusive to all communities which is non-religious/secular-based and eliminate hefty pensions for Members of Parliament unless they serve more than 15 years (and also start the payment only after 65/retirement age). Eliminate or scrap all white elephant projects while simultaneously addressing the safety net for people below the poverty level. Reduce the number of Members of Parliament and eliminate the bonus MP system.

Reduce the number of Ministers to 10 or 12 to merge the all ministries within that frame work and avoid entourage of members travelling with ministers and MPs on their trips (regardless of if they be locally or overseas)

3. Announce the Bailout agenda that tied with the austerity measures to be implemented by the new government without the fear of facing re-election prospects.

If for any reason that IMF issues the bailout with an interim government in place, I also request a monitoring body not from the government of Sri Lanka but from other IMF members or an independent auditing body on weekly basis to account for every penny they have spent.

People will have selective amnesia and politicians will utilize retroactive interference to deviate from the original issue. As we have seen time-after-time, this game by politicians has been well played in Sri Lanka in the past and will be played in the future.

I am afraid that the tax dollars of the tax-payers of IMF member countries will be siphoned by another corrupt group of people, unless a new government comes to power with a clean slate and with systems in place for monitoring transparency and accountability.

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Latest comments

  • 17
    1

    Today people are more affected than then. Sometimes, it is comparable to the levels seen in Tahiti and Somalia. But he came to power saying he would be building a Singapore. Wimal Weerawansyan deceived not a few but millions of people..Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed and cut into pieces but the worst journalists of our country live their lifestyles close to their crook politicians. No action or divine punishment seem to work against any of them.
    But so far people have experienced a country similar to starving Ethiopia in our great motherland.

    Since then, people’s decisions have been wrong.People are deceived again and again. Next time, they would not react differently either. The question arises, whether holding DEMOCRATIC elections would be appropriate with our primitive folks.

    • 7
      20

      Dr. Senthil: IMF and the Washington Consensus is working to colonize Sri Lanka with DEBT FOR NATURE SWAPS and take over of marine and forest resources.. Wake up!
      The IMF works for the Global 1 percent and is in Lanka to bail out the International Bond traders like BlackROck, J. P morgan, Lemundi, Allianz etc.
      BlackRock controles 7 trillion assets and got huge US government Covid-19 bailout funds to asset strip in poor countries that were deliberately impoverished and debt trapped with 2 years of Covlid-19 lockdowns and Defaulted like Sri Lanka so IMF can dictate policies, Digitalize with Fuel passes and Social Safty nets etc. and Colonize Sri Lanka while selling off assets ports, airports, energy and telecom infrastructure, lands, etc. Wake up Dr. Senthil. IMF and US government which has 750 military bases all over the world is the problem! Not the solution for Sri Lanka’s debt and economic crisis!

      • 7
        1

        Respectfully, IMF didn’t reach Srilanka to offer loan, it was Srilanka reached to IMF after China abandoned and unwilling to the restructuring of the loans. Therefore IMF is in the driver seat, not Srilanka.

        Previous multiple regimes drove the country into the ditch and asked the towing service which is IMF.

        This is where I mentioned, the retroactive interference phenomenon has been played well by the same politicians and you proved a perfect victim.

      • 7
        1

        Dear Dinuk, Have you ever been on the receiving end?

        By the act of defaulted the payment, the creditors are all in the driver seat and have the power to enforce as many conditions as they can to get their capital.

        All these years SL was in the driver seat, recklessly driving and plunged into the ditch.

        It’s the tow truck ( IMF) is going to drive the way they wanted until auto body shop ( Srilankan Economy) is repaired to Surplus or balanced Budget..

        Wait for few months, you all making noises will not only see just haircut in some area, but clean shaving in other areas.

      • 4
        1

        IMF did not invite you, your the one who went there and now standing at the steps with a begging bowl.

      • 7
        1

        Dinuk, just curious, do you know Din(o)uk Colombage, appointed as the director ,international affairs at the president office. As per him, his credentials are just BA ( majoring 20th century history) and pursuing Masters in political science. His work experience includes media coordinator for UNP in 2020 general election where the party could not muster one single seat. He supposedly has extensive knowledge in Social Media, analyzing changing patters and combating extremism ??, sure looks like he can help Ranil in getting few Aragalaya guys. His other business are making money as a middleman in real estate sector, renting his high end villa in Central province and produce own organic vegetables. Quite an experience to advise Ranil. Warning, please avoid reading comments in DM related to his appointment.

    • 2
      0

      Dear “leelagemalli”,
      .
      I have submitted three comments at the bottom of the page in which I found fault with the tone adopted by the author. It may be that the tone of my last email to you, and even more the comment which followed, were also unnecessarily abrasive.
      .
      However, what you have written here has exaggerations and contradictions. Weerasansa did not get “millions” of votes to be elected to Parliament, although he, and his ilk would have influenced many outside their Districts. You speak of “our great motherland” and then speak of the “primitive folks” inhabiting it.
      .
      If you don’t want “democratic” elections, what do you advocate? The imperfections of election by universal adult franchise has been long recognised, but is there a better system that you can suggest?
      .
      Populist measures are difficult to undo; registering voters at age eighteen is far too early. Also, ironically, too few actually vote.

  • 17
    4

    Excellent letter, Dr. Nadarajah. Any austerity measures the IMF proposes must begin with controlling corruption and unnecessary spending, starting with the parliament. First, the number of ministers should be reduced to 15 and there should be no deputy and state ministers. The number of MPs can easily be reduced to about 100, as they hardly perform any useful role in our society. Apart from a regular salary, no other benefits should be given to MPs or Ministers, especially vehicles/trasnport and free meals, and certainly no pensions. In other countries, Prime Ministers cycle (Mark Rutte in the Netherlands) or Chancellors walk to do their own shopping (Angela Merkel in Germany). If MPs do not feel safe to do this among their people in Sri Lanka, they should not be MPs but resign forwith as they do not have any legitimacy to stay in their job. If they are driven in a car, they need to use their own money for it and they should not have any priority in fuel queues because they are not performing an essential service at all. Also no money should be allocated for family members to become personal secretaries and other staff of MPs. An MP can be allocated one personal secretary from government service.

  • 18
    5

    This is the time that United Nations should think about intervening to resolve the problems of Sri Lanka since the governments are throughly failed socially, economically and politically and they are not capable to bring stability. You may give a period of three months to come up with a consensus and acceptable to form a interium government with a Prime Minister and a cabinet to organise the election of a new government that is accountable to United Nations. Failing that, United Nations should take full control of the country.

    • 1
      0

      Yes, Ajith, I think that this is a good time for the United Nations to intervene. If not all the War Crimes that I’m sure were committed will never be investigated.
      .
      This will be extremely difficult to achieve, but it is true that it is the sense of entitlement that the Sinhalese have that has been greatly responsible for the present state of affairs. I think that I have discussed this as much as I am able to on a Public Forum with both Mahila and you.
      .
      Mahila, I appreciate the fact that you have taken account of the constitutionality of the position for Presidential Dissolution of Parliament in February 2023. The problem is that Ranil doesn’t want to do it, and he was elected by the 130 odd for all the wrong and selfish reasons.
      .
      I’m pessimistic about the immediate future. Will there be a blood bath as early as the 9th of August?

  • 13
    3

    Senthil Nadaraja,
    Good morning.
    Well, you have captured the scenario existing in Sri Lanka quite well with insight and recommended conditionality with ample foresight!
    Sri Lankans expect the IMF to provide assistance to relieve the current Fiscal conundrum, so that the trials tribulations of all in the island is provided sufficient and minimal relief atleast toe nsure their sustenance, as at present most of the families are existing with 1 meal instead of 3 meals a day!!
    Fully agree with you that a new Parliament of MP’s with new mandate from the electorate would be helpful in promoting credibility of the institution, that has been discredited with mismanagement, corruption, importantly Nepotism and Klept•oc•racy!!!
    The period for eligibility for MP’s pension must be amended NOT FROM 5 YEARS TO 15 BUT TO 20 YEARS AS MINIMUM, to enable ALIGNMENT WITH THE LONG EXISTING GOVERNMENT POLICY of 20 years ‘continuous service in the respective service’, which is applicable for government employees!!
    WHY THIS SPECIAL “SHORT TERM” OF 5 AND 15 YEARS TENURE FOR PARLIAMENTARIANS???
    Not acceptable?!!
    Now the parliament would reach 2.5 years ‘tenure’ by February 2023, it would be constitutionally, permit dissolution of parliament by next year mid-February

  • 8
    2

    (Part II) – Continued
    If the Present MP’s are COMMUNITY AND/OR ‘PEOPLE CONSCIOUS AND ATTUNED’ THEY SHOULD SELF-RESOLVE AS A BODY WITH 2/3RD MAJORITY (which they have) before 2.5 years duration, dissolve parliament (forego pensions) and hold elections for new mandate (Elections within 2 months’ timeframe if necessary, with specific assistance from IMF to meet cost of elections in September/October 2022) to enable it and obtain reliable trustworthy and credible Mandate??!!
    Hope that your efforts being sought become a reality and IMF heeds such advice, with the grace and blessings of the Lord almighty, ever so compassionate and graceful.
    May the Lord Skanda of both Kataragama and Nallur bless Lanka – the thrice blessed Buddhist ‘DHARMA DEEPA and its citizens’ to achieve this new mandate soon and peacefully!

    • 0
      0

      Bro Mahila,
      .
      41 years in politics, today RW was chosen by the reptiles for their safety.
      . Gota had nothing but the fake personality of the fake media of the country. He was unable to solve the “kitchen gas cylinder problem”. Until Pakistan’s prime minister got involved, he was unable to rule against the ban on Muslim covid burial rights. He didn’t really do anything, but all because of his fake and unattainable steps.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z2c7A9Xd_Lw

      RW s political maturity may help him to some extent but you never know how long he will be able to manage all this.

      It is unexpected that the reptile throws poison at him. Not everyone who voted for him was his friend or colleague.

      After May 09, mlechcha rajpakshes fear for their lives and care less about economic revival than their own revival.

      • 0
        1

        Dear “leelagemalli”,
        .
        The mandate that Ranil received in August 2020 is much shakier than even author, Senthil Nadarajah, has realised. The UNP received what he says was 2.15% of the valid votes. This can be easily checked by me on-line, but I won’t, because if everybody else is so careless in writing, it’s best that I don’t pander to their laziness. The UNP has long been the Establishment Party in Lanka, and most of those votes must have been from habitual (may I add “illiterate”?) voters.
        .
        When I started writing I said that it was 3.46 am(see below); the time is now 7.08. I write slowly and carefully. It is much better to write two or three comments carefully than to post dozens of comments carelessly.
        .
        I seem to have been wrong in predicting that Preferential Voting would play a role in electing the Interim President. The fact is that AKD promised specifically to dissolve Parliament in February 2023. You refused to accept that position of his because of things that you say happened almost 35 years ago. I’m sure that terrible things were then done by the JVP, but that has to be another story.

  • 7
    5

    134 members of the parliament seem to have voted for Ranil. It may be interesting to find out how many members of the voters from the citizens voted for the 134 members?. Is it more than the 69 lakhs who voted for the Runaway president? How many voters voted for those Members of Parliament who supported Dulles? How many members were bought over from either side? This may not be possible, but a rough assessment may be interesting.
    The constitution may be legal but not moral/ethical. In a democracy, there cannot be a hide and seek on important matters which affect the people at large.

    • 2
      0

      Out of 134 MPs
      – 2/3 or more SLPP are venomous snakes
      RW had no choice but to support their survival. At the same time, a leader should be chosen to form a stable government
      – Those Muslim and Tamil MPs who voted for RW must have thought, – There is no other better candidate
      – What is important is that the IMF proves that the new government is stable enough.
      – Not too long ago, the SLPP bastards were vehemently opposed to the IMF –
      Vasidewa et al, argued against it but did not provide other alternatives.
      -https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B1WYgkDnqhM

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OezG0cmtQJA

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4jlJaAomAU

      In today’s context, people will be happier if they are blessed with fuel and daily necessities.

      • 1
        0

        Dear LM,
        .
        PART ONE
        .
        The time now is 7.53.

        .
        You have given us three YouTube links, all in Sinhalese, two very relevant.
        .
        The first didn’t click open, but after copy/pasting I listened to 8 minutes which were very revealing. They show that both Speaker and then Minister, Cabral, are most dishonest in what they say. Instead of answering to the point Cabral talks about a previous JVP leader, whilst admitting that AKD is different. What filibuster!
        .
        The second video is 12 minutes by Professor Charitha Herath. He doesn’t mince his words. He says that Cabral, Professor W.D. Lakshman (sic), P.B. Jayasundera and Atygalle are culpable for the crash of the Economy and must be held responsible. It is often said that there has been 74 years of mismanagement, which is also true, but to say that now, is to gloss over the dramatic collapse of the rupee owing to Gota’s pig-headed idiocy. The Rajapaksas were not only more corrupt than other political leaders, but also Gota didn’t listen to advice. I think him almost as corrupt, but whilst Cabral, PBJ, and Atygalle probably knew how to cheat without getting caught, Gota was also incompetent.

      • 0
        0

        PART TWO
        .
        And let this also be said: Mahinda Rajapaksa is the most evil villain, but has proved to be a consummate demagogic politician; his health seems poor. His demise would help! Unfortunately , Ranil Wickremasinghe looks like lasting longer. I know that this paragraph touches on taboos! These politenesses have to be dispensed with, given that many innocent younger people will probably die because of these fellows.
        .
        Herath goes out of his way to say that Professor Lakshman was his friend and a nice man personally. He is in his dotage and shouldn’t have been employed. The third YouTube link is to Cabral speaking in English and needn’t have been given at all. He seems to say plausible things, but he is a professional and a liar. It’s just not worth my while analysing this, and perhaps I can’t catch him out.
        .
        This is one reason why we can’t get these rogues convicted. We don’t listen to expert advice. In this case professional investigators and judges.
        .
        I next went to the Sinhalese Section, and sure enough, you have made a comment there. I gave it a “Like” after reading only the first sentence.
        .
        https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/wijayananda-jayaweera-21-july-2022/

      • 0
        0

        PART THREE
        .
        Why? Two reasons:
        (a) I know that you are absoutley honorable, and (b) I heartily approve of all efforts to reach out to Monolingul Sinhalese people. The problem is that I think that few readers incapable of reading in English come to CT. I approve of the the existence of the Sinhalese Section because there is something that is sometimes unstated: viz. Swabasha users are often treated with disdain even by those Lankans who have only a smattering of English. Tamil? No resources, but also that’ll be enough for your friend Weerawansa to spin conspiracy theories.
        .
        You wanted me to comment in Sinhalese. Both old codger and I have made comments there in English. It’s just not worth the huge effort that has to be expended to comment in Sinhalese. The way Sinhala audiences are reached is via YouTube. It is a serious problem that very few users of English know what is going on in the Sinhala media. The links that you provide are a great help, but I don’t know about the comments that Jit, you, and Champa make there. I put Champa last.
        .
        Panini Edirisinhe (NIC 483111444V) of Bandarawela

      • 0
        0

        PART FOUR
        .
        What do I make of Champa?
        I treat Champa’s comments about contemporary happenings with great respect, but her/his History is pure mythology, and I feel that it’s done tongue-in-cheek.
        .
        YouTube is a dangerous medium. Owners, Google, are interested only in profits. This is what Wikipedia says today: “As of May 2019, videos were being uploaded at a rate of more than 500 hours of content per minute.” Even Wikipedia doesn’t know the position three years later. Probably nobody does! I’m grateful to them for these seven minutes:
        .
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLV8VH98pL0
        .
        See what happened with Sepal Amerasinghe’s YouTube programmes. The moment I found the rascal asking voters, in August 2020, to spoil their ballots I told you that I was never going to listen to him again. You admitted recently that what he was doing was designed to help the Rajapaksas. He’s now once more critical of that Family of Robbers. His strategy is what Banquo identified in Act One, but Macbeth realised only in Act Five:
        .
        “But ’tis strange
        And oftentimes, to win us to our harm,
        The instruments of darkness tell us truths,
        Win us with honest trifles, to betray’s
        In deepest consequence.”

  • 8
    3

    I do agree that the Bridging Loan to GoSL should come after a stable Government is formed after an Election is held under NEW set of conditions. The current GoSL headed by Ranil W should bring back the 19th Amendment to the constitution. I wonder whether the NEW Constitution that is being drafted over the last 7 years is ready or not. If it’s ready it should be put to Public Referendum asap. Ranil W should DISSOLVE the Parliament as and when he could according to the constitution

  • 10
    3

    The new President, Mr. Ranil, does not represent the will of the majority of people through an election. Although he was voted for by 134 MPs, many of whom are suspected of being bribed millions of rupees and promised to be appointed as Cabinet ministers. The new president, as promised, already appointed the same 18 members of the previous Mahinda and Gotabaya Rajapakasas’ SLPP party. In contrast, both had to vacate their positions as prime minister and President due to the severe protests held Islandwide within the last three months. Mr. Ranil has taken over as P.M and now President with the support of the same party by -passing a presidential election by the people. He is, therefore, an illegal occupier of the post. He has no mandate, even for a short while, and how could he carry it out for two more years? He is there to help Rajapaksa crooks only as their caretaker and to prevent them from being legally punished by Sri Lankan legal Syatem.

  • 4
    1

    To The IMF, in short / conclusion : “Sorry Lanka will bankrupt you in no time “

  • 1
    5

    ‘The people of Sri Lanka rejected all current Members of the Parliament (MPs) who bankrupted the country.’
    .
    Everything the writer says is based on this premise, which is false. Some people have rejected….not all. The people will decide to accept or reject all current MPs at the next General Election, not before. No Tamil attempt at regime change will work.

  • 0
    0

    Dear Dr Senthil Nadarajah,
    .
    I saw your article an hour ago; It is 3.46 am, but I shall spend an hour commenting here. I have commented on many other articles.
    .
    Your basic thesis is correct; I shall suggest certain caveats to what you and commenters have written, and point out some fallacies.
    .
    The question is: will you study what has been written by me, and others, and iron out the creases?
    .
    I don’t know much Economics, but common sense tells me some things. There will be no bailout by the IMF, or by anybody else (put CHINA in the list), until we have an acceptable government in place. India has helped more than we could have expected because of proximity, other strategic reasons, and a host of close ties.
    .
    No loans will be given to us, because we will not be in a position to repay. The IMF works like any other Bank – it gives loans so as to have them repaid with interest. This is where my amateurishness is a handicap; I don’t know the intricacies of Economics. Also, the IMF, has longer-term goals, and was set up to genuinely help in crises.

  • 0
    0

    PART TWO
    .
    You will see all this too late to respond here; please do so elsewhere, when you see something that I have said.
    .
    You have said three times that you pay taxes in America. Direct taxes? I have paid almost no direct taxes even in Lanka because I’m poor. However, we do pay lots of indirect taxes; the opposite of such taxes are “subsidies” and welfarism. This has been pointed out by more thoughtful writers. One example:
    .
    https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/the-fuel-price-hike-repositioning-transport-logistics-sector-to-lead-economic-recovery-in-sri-lanka/
    .
    Study just the first paragraph there. You ought to note that the really good articles get very few responses. Examine carefully, and you will realise; it’s my comments that have swelled the numbers!
    .
    Right now it is the poorest people upon whom the burden falls most (it may be that they deserve it because they voted in a set of rogues without parallel!)
    .
    You’re right about the need for elections ASAP; Ranil has made it clear that he has no such intention. He must be forced to comply. The situation, in real terms, is so dire that unless essentials are supplied there will be few people left to vote!

  • 0
    0

    PART THREE
    .
    I’m old; I will die soon. What I meant is that people have got used to certain life-styles; they cannot get back to older ways of living. Example: dwellings in city slums are so constructed that coking on an open hearths is impossible. And how do they get the firewood?
    .
    It is unlikely that many individuals in the governing group will be re-elected; but there is the danger that similar people will get elected – the commonest way is to rouse racism.
    .
    Any changes to the laws of the country, and especially to the constitution, must be made by the new Parliament. Application, again, of common sense. Ranil has become President legally, through manipulation, not loopholes. The American system of electing Executive and Legislature is less rational than Lanka’s. The problem is that few understand the system. JRJ realised it; he was as wily a manipulator as his nephew, Ranil.
    .
    I’m afraid the tone of your Open Letter is also wrong; what comes through is almost a hatred of this country which you had to flee. I don’t contest the veracity of your reasons for fleeing!
    .
    Panini Edirisinhe (NIC 483111444V) of Bandarawela

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