By Hilmy Ahamed –
It is unfortunate that Sri Lankans have begun to vote on ethnic considerations. Politicians from minority communities, except those aligned to the TNA have continued to exploit the political opportunities and ensure their wellbeing–always. The nexus between the TNA and the United National Party can be labeled as “nothing better”. The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and the Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) are branded as amongst the worst wheeler-dealers. Is the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) joining the race? The declaration of the next presidential or general elections would bring out the contest amongst the two main political alliances to bid for allegiance of these sectarian parties. The price, this time around, would be indeed staggering, especially with the cash rich UNFPA with its desperate need to continue and an opposition that seems to have been revitalized, with their encouraging performance in Uva. Ministerial positions, diplomatic posting and chairmanship of various state entities would supplement the cash rewards for these pole-vaulters. Obviously, the prosperous and powerful incumbent administration would have a clear advantage, but can these politicians deliver the votes of their people to a government that has treated the minorities with contempt. This is even more baffling especially in a volatile political environment where there is talk of regime change.
The political nuptial between Rishard Bathiudeen, (All Ceylon Muslim Congress, ACMC) and Rauf Hakeem, (Sri Lanka Muslim Congress, SLMC) in the Uva provincial elections is an interesting experiment that turned out to be disastrous for the duo. Political observers have commented that the incumbent government had engineered their alliance to ensure that the decisive Muslim vote that would have gone to the opposition due of the hate campaign by the Bodu Bala Sena would be diverted. The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), that had won the confidence and admiration of a large number of Muslims in the western and southern provincial elections, was the victim of this alliance between the SLMC and ACMC.
The question that minorities need to ask is, whether these sectarian parties have delivered anything to their communities? The lot, in the plantation sector has had absolutely no opportunity to keep pace with the rest of the country in their march towards prosperity. The up-country youth, who may not be interested in being labourers in the plantation sector, have flown out to Colombo and other urban centers to work as salesmen and labourers in vegetable shops and grocery stores. They are usually compelled to work at least 15 hours a day, but they seem to be happy that they are not estate labourers anymore – progress indeed.
The Muslim community, in recent times has come under extreme pressure and is discriminated in education, employment and business with tacit support from the political leadership of the country. What has the Muslim politicians or Muslim political parties done to address the continuous threat to the Muslims by extremist forces?
The contribution of the Muslims to the economy and nation dates back to over a thousand years. Prior to Muslim communal politics that was introduced by Hon. A H M Ashraff,, the Muslim political leaders were part of the mainstream parties and many of them did not even need the Muslim vote to get elected. Today, the onslaught on the minorities by the Bodu Bala Sena, Sinhala Ravaya and Ravana Balaya has affected the fragile peace that existed between the Muslims and Buddhists. These extremist forces continue to intimidate with impunity, the Christian and Muslim community’s right to worship and practice their religion. There is absolute break down of law and order, when it comes to the hate campaign carried out by the saffron robed extremists.
It is time that the government of His Excellency, Mahinda Rajapaksa addressed this menace, for political reasons or otherwise and secure the confidence of the minorities. Failure on their part would ensure that sectarian politics would prosper, threating the peace and wellbeing of all communities.
Most observers comment that the incumbent government has lost the Tamil, Muslim and Christian votes. It is also claimed that they are beginning to lose the moderate Sinhala Buddhist votes. This may or may not be a valid argument in a presidential election, but this would certainly be a decisive factor in the next general elections. Should communities vote on a sectarian basis, the threats and further polarization would certainly lead to conflict and possible violence.
Further, with a split in the Sinhala Buddhist vote between the UPFA and UNP, the minority alliances would certainly become dominant players in future governments, creating further hatred. The Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) has announced their entry in to politics to save Buddhism at the next general elections,. The Sri Lankan Tamil political alliance in Sri Lanka along with their partners are certain of their dominance in the North and some parts of the East. If the Muslims vote on communal considerations and form a Muslim National Alliance across the country, they would probably be guaranteed of over 20 parliamentary representations. The CWC and other political representatives in the plantation sector could form their alliance too. Is this what we need for us to be the miracle of Asia?
Thalaivar / November 7, 2014
SLMC, ACMC are communal parties like TNA, TULF, ITAK, ACTC.
They are the bane of the nation.
Amarasiri / November 7, 2014
Thalaivar and Hilmy Ahamed,
RE: Communal Politics – The Bane Of A nation
“SLMC, ACMC are communal parties like TNA, TULF, ITAK, ACTC”
There was no SLMC before 1981. Muslims Voted for UNP, SLFP, LSSP and CP, the “National” Parties.
Then UNP and SLFP became Sinhaa “Buddhist” Parties. You know or should know the rest of the story.
Still many Muslims Vote for UNP, and SLFP. more than SLMC. Rajapaksa Sinhala “Buddhist” Chauvinism, and the ineffectiveness of SLMC will likely push the Muslims to the UNP.
In 2009, SLMC got 0.74% of the Popular Vote. Muslims constitute 9% of the Population. So 8.26% of the Population who are Muslims voted for other parties. That means 92% of the Muslims ( 8.26/9)did not vote for SLMC.
Sri Lanka Muslim Congress
The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress is a political party in Sri Lanka. The party was formed at a meeting held at Kattankudy in 1981 by a small study group of local Eastern Province political leaders. At the last legislative elections, held on 2 April 2004, the party won 2.0% of the popular vote and 5 out of 225 seats. The party represents the Muslim community of Sri Lanka.
Sri Lankan provincial council elections, 2008–09
Party / Alliance Votes % Seats
United People’s Freedom Alliance1 5,137,170 63.10% 269
United National Party2 2,609,386 32.05% 131
Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna 234,442 2.88% 12
Sri Lanka Muslim Congress2 60,091 0.74% 2
Burning Issue / November 7, 2014
You need to open your eyes fully! UNP and SLFP may embody mainstream name but they have been and are every bit communal! This is exactly why we are in this mess!
In fact TNA is there because of Sinhala communal politics!
Nathan / November 7, 2014
It is claimed that only UNP and SLFP are truly nationalistic parties of SL. In name, at least, they are.
Independence saw politicians of minority affiliations joining hands with UNP – there was no SLFP then – to build Ceylon.
The dream of a prosperous Ceylon was dashed from day one. The fears and the ensuing worries Tamils expressed prior to independence materialised overnight. DS failed to honour his assurances to Tamil leadership.
No Sinhalese leader showed any sense of urgency to bring a halt to the divisive politics of UNP, and the breakaway SLFP. In fact, their actions indicated that the Sinhalese leadership had had a blue-print in place to bring down Tamils to their knees.
It was a two-pronged attack, –
* Destroying the political will of Tamils by weakening their electoral base. Disenfranchisement of the upcountry Tamils; Sinhala colonisation of Tamil homeland; Buying over Tamil political outcasts; etc, etc.
* Driving a wedge between the Tamil and muslim communities.
The Muslim leadership willingly bought it. It was sheer opportunism.
Today, Hilmy Ahamed, laments:
– The Muslim community, in recent times has come under extreme pressure and is discriminated in education, employment and business
– The question that minorities need to ask is, whether these sectarian parties have delivered anything to their communities?
Hilmy, You are intelligent enough to answer your own question. Why leave it to us … ?
Bedrock Barney / November 7, 2014
Fisrtly other than a few exceptions, in almost all exceptions election since 31, people have voted on ethnic lines. Secondly voting on ethnic lines is common in south Asia and maybe in Asia in general.
Jim softy / November 7, 2014
Is lam is a political religion.
Islamism—the belief that politics is and must be an extension of the faith—comes in many colours, from the black of al-Qaeda to the dark green of Saudi-style Wahhabism to the palest of modernising shades. In whatever dose, the mixing of religion with politics implicitly involves the right to interpret and to impose the will of God. Many Arabs, and not just the avowedly secular, are uncomfortable with this and resent such powers of enforcement. Perhaps that is why, amid the seemingly inexorable rise of Islam as a political rallying force and amid increasingly strident assertions of sectarian identity, doubts are also growing
Amarasiri / November 7, 2014
Early on in Islamic History, they were able to sepatare the Religion from state administration and Economy.
However, with the Wahhabism, who follow Iblis, the Devil, this has become very clouded and murky..
The Ulema, the Mullah have taken an upper hand and the Radicals have used Religion to their advantage
So BOTH the Radicals, The ,Militants and the Wahhabi Ulema, who follow Iblis, Devil need to be exposed…
Did you ever wonder why the Arabs have Low I Q compared to the Europeans and East Asians? With I.Qs lower than 85?
To much inbreeding. close 60%. For Sri Lanka and India it is 20 to 25%
If the Arabs did not do inbreeding for the past 1400 years, their I.Qs would have been close to that of Europeans, 100. To what extent was inbreeding responsible for the decline of Islamic Science and Civilization?
Europe and China, less than 3%. I.Q’s over 100
whywhy / November 7, 2014
“Islam is not only a religion,it’s a culture,civilization
and politics.” Bernard Lewis in “Arabs in History.” A
specialist in Middle East History.Why are you so late to
understand it?It’s not a religion born only to bless the
Amarasiri / November 8, 2014
“It’s not a religion born only to bless the corrupt rulers.”
That is how it has turned out to be these days..
They all follow, Iblis, Satan, the Devil..
Tamil from the north / November 7, 2014
Hey Thalaivar or Prabaharan wannabe, whichever suits you put it on. You are an interesting character. If you called the ACTC a communal minded party, you must be missing a screw or something. This is the only party, which stood against the separation of SL back in the 80s, when I was there.
Nishantha De Silva / November 7, 2014
another lame attempt to highlight that minorities will be a force in coming elections in future.
only sinhalese buddhists will determine who will rule this country.
Native Vedda / November 8, 2014
Nishantha De Silva, descendant of Kallathonie,
“only sinhalese buddhists will determine who will rule this country.”
The destruction of this island would be complete sooner than later.
Nishantha De Silva / November 10, 2014
vedda, you are nothing but a stupid scum
Native Vedda / November 10, 2014
Nishantha De Silva
“vedda, you are nothing but a stupid scum”
May be I am a stupid scum. I am my own stupid scum not yours. Does it bother you. Why don’t you get lost?
Go,keep on self destructing.
Nishantha De Silva / November 10, 2014
stupid vedda, learn the lesson now which is not to interfere with other peoples affairs or comments. if you need to comment, comment professionally without being a stupid scum of a bigot.
i may ask you to get lost to where you came from.
Native Vedda / November 11, 2014
Nishantha De Silva
Please reincarnate as ella kolla as he is much more cleverer than you are and we find him/her amusing.
whywhy / November 8, 2014
Minorities had been a force in the past,they are a force
in the present and they will be a force in the future
and so long as elections last and even under a rule of
extreme Sinhala Buddhist Monk.Of course minorities
decided past election victories and are still deciding,
however much you cried foul.Who decided Mahinda to be
the president against Ranil?Sinhala Buddhists?Who
re-elected him?VP re-elected him.Who is behind his
attempt for a third bid?Still VP.You are not electing
him,you are simply celebrating VP’s disappearance and
Mahinda cuts the cake!Understand my friend?
Nishantha De Silva / November 10, 2014
mohomud rajapassa should realise the truth by now, if he wants to be brother of minorities, then he will be doomed
whywhy / November 10, 2014
It’s the one who can not eat Biriyani and Thosai
will be doomed!
Nishantha De Silva / November 11, 2014
whywhy hui hui, wrong judgement
Dinuk / November 7, 2014
Hilmy, good article but sorry to say that Muslims are the most communal of all the ethno-religious groups in Sri Lanka;
The hill country Tamils who are victims of their leaders (just like the Muslims) and thugs like Thondaman and the CWC are the most integrated, bilingual and multi-cultural of the various groups of Lanka!
Dr.Rajasingham Narendran / November 7, 2014
Minority communalism is a defensive response to majority communalism, also called majoritarianism. Both feed on each other and are consuming this nation. One cannot survive without the other. Sri Lankan politics is build on communalism. Most decisions made in this country have a communal angle and even when not, the minorities have been trained to look at them from a communal angle. Every demand and protest of the minorities is also projected in a communal angle to the majority. This process is now Pavlovian-reflexive- and embedded in our culture. Our politicians thrive and breed like flies and maggots on this garbage.
Sri Lanka will prosper without both. This garbage is Sri Lanka’s curse.
Vibhushana / November 7, 2014
Thats like saying I raped her because she wore a mini-skirt ins’t it? You should by now that is somewhat silly thing to do.
Also why are you generalising all minorities? Moslems for example haven’t been banned in 52 countries for terrorism in SL. They have been comparatively peaceful and progressive bunch isn’t it?
Dr. Rajasingham Narendran / November 7, 2014
The reverse of your scenario is more apt.
The girl cried, screamed, clawed and wielded the stick every time she saw the man who had raped her multiple times from the time she was eight years old in 1956. She continues to do so, though she is a 58 year old now.
Can she be blamed, in a country where a 76 year old unmarried retired female school teacher was raped and killed by her 17 year old student! I am referring here to the murder in Kiribathkumbura ( the village between Pilimatalawa and Peradeniya on the Kandy road) to underline the point I am making more comprehensible.
Muslims, have also lost their innocence now and are beginning to react to the repeated antics of the rapists in many parts of the island.
Native Vedda / November 7, 2014
“Minority communalism is a defensive response to majority communalism
Thats like saying I raped her because she wore a mini-skirt ins’t it? You should by now that is somewhat silly thing to do.”
Its other way around. He raped her in her defense she tried to chop his willy.
“They have been comparatively peaceful and progressive bunch isn’t it?”
No most people want to be peaceful and progressive except the Sinhala/Buddhists who cannot live without their bogus identity, lies, myth as history and periodically perpetrating violence.
billy / November 7, 2014
are you saying even when the british were ruling with apartheid privileges given to tamils, it was under sinhala supremacy so that chelvas and ponnambalams started their communal politics far back as 1020s ..it seems you are living in some parallel universe, it was tamil communal politics that and apartheid rule under british that lead to majority taking reactive political actions…
Burning Issue / November 8, 2014
Since 1948, the sinhala have been in charge; they single handedly bastardised the constitution. They are responsible for the current mess and no one else.
The 1948 constitution was jointly accepted and it was Sinhala who unilaterally changed to their advantage. Any fool can recognise this!
T.A.KUMAR / November 7, 2014
The J.H.U. was born with Soma Hamuduruwo. The B.B.S. with the backing of the Government to ensure that the Muslims and the Christians will go on bended knee to M.R./ Government for protection so that he could have a deal. The moderate Buddhist are vary some may say ye to teach the Muslims and the Christians a lesson. But this will not happen.
So M.R./GOTA the main backer of the B.B.S. forget it. God is grater than you
upali wijewardene / November 7, 2014
Spot on Hilmy. Yes, this is something the Rajapaksa trio should address immediately. Failure would ensure their downfall as well as the destruction of the country. We have seen it happen too ofen, the latest being Aluthgama massacre. Let us not leave our children to the fate that has befallen on us.
Hakeem should ditch his communal politics and join a ,mainstream party, without hoodwinking the Muslim voters, get elected and sell his soul to the highest bidder. Wonder what else he would sell if he get the right price?
kuram / November 7, 2014
SLMC must be eliminated and the Muslims should also discard some of these lebbes who mortgaged muslims and even hijacked Islam for their petty gains, which resulted in BBS, Sihalaya Ravaya and tragedies like Aluthgama/Beruwala. Situation will further worsen after the Prez election because BBS and Mynmar 969 MoU will intensify.
Taraki / November 7, 2014
It’s not only communalism, there is the caste factor too in politics.
K.A Sumanasekera / November 7, 2014
Tamil National Alliance is not a communal party according to Hilmy..
There you go..
If it was called the Vellala National Alliance or VTA , I would have gone along with Hilmy ,
How come Christians do not appear here to challenge Hilmy on his claim that all Christians are with the UNP TNA Diaspora Alliance…
Anglicans of course have expressed their position through their Bishop.Chikera .
Ampare is going to be a totally Muslim District run by the Muslims according to the SLMC which is the largest association of inhabitant Muslims.
Which is fair enough if the UNP CC grants all Sambabdan’s wishes.
North and East can accommodate all Tamils which is the total inhabitant population according to to Me Sambandan and which is confirmed by Hilmy here.
Is Ampare big enough to accommodate all our Muslim brothers and sisters who are living peacefully and doing reasonably well contrary to what Hilmy says here ?.
sivan / November 7, 2014
It was only a minority of upper caste tamils that got preferential treatment from the British
The plantation tamils were amongst the most abused of all people under British rule.
Noor Nizam / November 7, 2014
Hill-Me-Rmed is a very good journalist, behind the screen operator and has great links to the international media mafia that operates with international funding from Norway, Hong Kong and the UN agencies.
I have my doubts about his political intentions and goals. May this type of this character is aspiring to get a UNP or SLFP ticket in the next general elections. He has been actively involved in trying to harness the Muslims to think against the government in power over some time. Some Muslim Ministers and parliamentarians may have been carried away by his capacity to misguide them. Was he not one of the main forces that resulted in the political nuptial between Rishard Bathiudeen, (All Ceylon Muslim Congress, ACMC) and Rauf Hakeem, (Sri Lanka Muslim Congress, SLMC) in the Uva provincial elections that turned out to be disastrous for the duo, as he has stated in his article. It was indeed NOT a disaster, but it expressed a unity of politico-communal feelings of the Sri Lankan Muslims. According to Hill-Me-RMed, if the Muslims vote on communal considerations and form a Muslim National Alliance across the country, they would probably be guaranteed of over 20 parliamentary representations. Hill-Me-RMed should form that Muslim National Alliance and get prepared for the NEXT general Elections. We do not need opinions at the moment. What we need is real action and productive political results.
Sri Lankan Muslims have stood by the side of the Sinhala Nation and defended out “Mathruboomiya” then and now. We will do it in the future too.
Peace and Political Activist.
hilmy Ahamed / November 8, 2014
Wow Noor Nizam, thank you for your compliments. Surprised that you have not mentioned that I have presidential ambitions. Dont worry, I am not going to pose a threat to your master. You could continue to wag your … without any disruption
Muslim Observer / November 8, 2014
Throughout the Sri Lankan Muslim history, the Muslims did not mix politics with the religion. They voted for the mainstream parties like UNP, SLFP, LSSP, Communist party etc and it was the SLMC politicians like Ashraf, Hakeem who roused the Muslim community, particularly the young bloods,with the fevour of “we Muslims and our rights” which led to the racial hatred of the Sinhalese.
The race card was the only avenue the SLMC politicians had to enter into politics.
As quoted by Amarasiri how many Muslims Muslims vote for the SLMC even now. This is seen in the number voted the SLMC received in areas other than the east
Jim softy / November 8, 2014
I believe what Noor Nizam says.
Jim softy / November 8, 2014
I believe what Noor Nizam says.
This Hilmi Ahmed has some other motive.
Noor Nizam / November 8, 2014
Attention of Mr. Hill-Me-RMed.
Though I have been dormant over a period of time, in contributing my writings to the press,but my thoughts have been tormented by the writings of “so-called” media owners and writers who have recently started climbing the platform of “Muslim Politics” in Sri Lanka and are attempting to show their faces as the saviours of the “MUSLIM FACTOR” in the dirty political playing field of communal politics in Sri Lanka. My thoughts went back to the life story of Mahatma Gandhi when the great leader of non-violence stated: “Silence becomes cowardice when occasion demands speaking out the whole truth and acting accordingly.” Did I have a duty to respond to these press articles being a Sri Lankan Muslim myself. I had preferred silence in writing, but was I cowardice then? As a free lance journalist and having been an active player in the forefront of national politics for almost 35 years, I felt it right to respond to these articles. It struck me that, being a Sri Lankan Muslim, if I remain silent, I would be guilty of complicity – complicity of aiding and abetting the “so-called” media owners and writers who have recently started climbing the platform of “Muslim Politics” in Sri Lanka and are attempting to show their faces as the saviours of the “MUSLIM FACTOR” in the dirty political playing field of communal politics in Sri Lanka.
Thus I decided to write this content in respect to Hilmy Ahamed’s misguiding article.I am a strong believer of the UNITY of politico-communal feelings of the Sri Lankan Muslims towards finding a solution to the “MUSLIM FACTOR” of our nation.
Noor Nizam – Peace and Political Activist ad Political Communication Researcher.
hilmy Ahamed / November 9, 2014
Mr Noor Nizam, let me be very clear, I am no politician nor do I have any political ambitions. I am also not a failed politician like yourself and that is one thing we do not have in common – Ambitions of POLITICAL office. I do agree that we both have community interests, but we have chosen two different paths to achieve our objectives. You have chosen to lean on the incumbent and ignore the impunity offered to the Bodu Bala Sena and other extremist groups, but I have taken them on in an almost street brawl. Where were you in the last two years when the Muslim community was more or less butchered? Could you have not interfered and addressed this hate campaign with your publicly claimed connections to temple trees? or is it that you have been sidelined – used as toilet paper and flushed down?
Let me be clear of one thing. My social activism is not for perks, privileges or positions. I am comfortable as I am and do not need to suck up to any politicians for my survival. What I have written is what has happened not just to the Muslims but the entire Sri Lankan polity.
You seems to always claim that I am a “behind the screen operator” with fictitious claims. You claim of defending your “mathrubhoomiya” sounds of typical hypocrisy and is almost reminiscent of someone I know who wields huge powers. Remember, I love this country as much as you do or probably more because I live and fight for the coexistence of all in Sri Lanka and you have chosen to milk the Canadian cow while chastising them for their role in taking a stand on human rights and religious intolerance in Sri Lanka. I invite you to give up your Canadian citizenship and return to save your MATHRUBHOOMIYA. Lets see whether you walk the big TALK. Cowardice is to run away. Be brave and live up to the great words of Mahatma Gandhi as quoted by you: “Silence becomes cowardice when occasion demands speaking out the whole truth and acting accordingly.”
Noor Nizam / November 9, 2014
Mr. Hill-Me – Rmed,
I can understand your emotions and rage when facts are revealed. There is a traditional saying among we Sri Lankans thus: “ULLATHA SONNAAL UDAMBUELLAAM NOVUM”. I feel that has made you to flow out the contents in your response comments. What you have written is mostly irrelevant and out of context.
Let me throw clarity to the words/phases and sentences you have used, which I fully agree with you.
“One thing we do not have in common – Ambition of POLITICAL OFFICE” Unquote.
So your claim that I am a failed politician holds no grounds.
Again your statement:
“you have been sidelined – used as toilet paper and flushed down?” Unquote.
If the fact, as stated by you that I have NO “Ambition of POLITICAL OFFICE”, then being “sidelined – used as toilet paper and flushed out has no meaning to my political affiliation to the SLFP. I was, I am and will be a party loyalist and a “STALWART”.
YES, I have very strong and solid connections with Temple Trees and as a Sri Lankan Muslim expatriate and a Canadian Citizen, I interact and intermingle with the VIP’s and VVIP’s at Temple Trees during my visits to Sri Lanka. If you did NOT know that much, go ask the Muslim parliamentarians both in the government and the opposition, Muslim ministers and authentic Muslim civil society leaders. They will tell you about my political backgrounder. One senior Muslim journalist for whom I have the greatest respect, the Editor of Navamani will give you a better insight.
I thought I was experiencing “RACISM” from among some of my contacts in the SLFP political community who even called me “Thambiya”, but I took it up with humour and never retaliated. I only wanted to be where I was, as I was the ONLY Muslim who was blessed with such privileges. Within those boundaries, I have done my share in respect of my community. Like the Sea turtle which lays hundreds of eggs in still darkness of the night and quietly retires to the ocean, I have done my share against the hate campaigns and political deceptions done to the Sri Lankan Muslims, be it Beruwela, Aluthgama, Grandpass, Dambulla and the North and East. It is my own community who are full of racism it seems now from your comments. As for my claim you are a “behind the screen operator”. I still stand to it. Your own emails, your own circulation of news reporting, your presence reported in provocative meetings held in “Camera”, and your high jacking Muslim civil society and yahoogroups to propagate your hidden intentions are enough evidence towards this.
As for the challenge thrown for me to return to Sri Lanka and save my “MATHRUBOOMIYA”, I have done it many times when the need has arisen, both while I lived in Sri Lanka and when domiciled in Canada.
But I am prepared to adhere to your request, if you will create the Muslim National Alliance across the country, that would probably be guaranteed of over 20 parliamentary representations at the next general elections 2015 as predicted by you. I am willing to come down and work for that Alliance under you please. That is more politically daring than operating behind the screen.
Noor Nizam – Peace and Political Activist and Political Communication Researcher.
Ilango / November 11, 2014
There was a lick-spittle foul-mouthed Lebbe also had some Temple Trees connection and close to MaRa as his advisor, when this Lebbe fellow died his family alleged that he was poisoned to death by the regime!!!