1 October, 2020

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D-Day In Parliament

By Dayan Jayatilleka –

Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka

It is a simple matter of ethics. If Prime Minister Wickremesinghe hasn’t resigned, it is quite simply because, firstly, he doesn’t know right from wrong and secondly, he doesn’t know how to conduct himself in public affairs in accordance with international norms, including those in Asia and the global South.

He doesn’t think it was wrong to import and implant Arjuna Mahendran, a non-citizen, as Governor of the Central Bank despite the advice of the President and a clear issue of a conflict of interest.

He doesn’t see it as wrong that he defended Mahendran from charges of wrong-doing when the bond scam story gathered momentum and the weight of evidence.

He doesn’t think it was wrong to damage the UNP, the government and the President by his acts of omission and commission (no pun intended) in this regard.

He doesn’t think that he should accept responsibility for a huge error of judgment which led to massive financial losses to the country.

He doesn’t believe in apologizing, taking responsibility for his huge mistake and resigning.

In short his standards of political behavior and conduct in public affairs, leaves much to be desired.

So the no-confidence motion is going down to the wire. Some parties will make their decision only on the day itself. This isn’t good because it means that there is no compromise in sight—the only possible compromise being the voluntary resignation of the prime Minister, just as the President of Peru resigned a few weeks ago, to spare his government precisely such a trial by fire in the legislature, on grounds of countenancing corruption. The absence of such an exit from the crisis in Sri Lanka reveals the inflexibility and intransigence on the part of the PM and his party the UNP.

There is a major difference between adherence to principle on the one hand, and rigidity on the other.  An analysis of the rise of extremism and the attendant phenomenon of violent upheavals throughout the world and over time, show that two factors play a major causative role. One is the inflexibility, rigidity, intransigence, of the establishment. The other is the unwillingness or inability of liberal reformers to prevail over such intransigence.

The Sri Lankan situation is demonstrating the presence of the first of these two factors. We shall see on April 4th whether or not the second factor is also present.

Those of us who do not wish to see the growth of extremism in our society once again, have to wish and work for the factor of intransigence to be replaced by flexibility or for the moderate reformers to be willing and able to prevail over the dogmatically inflexible.

Translated into simpler political terms, we have to hope that either the PM steps down or that the SLFP and the UNP dissidents are sufficiently strong, numerous and determined to join the JO in prevailing over the PM’s intransigence and the UNP’s dogmatically conformist loyalty to him.   

While flexibility usually ensures survival either by being as supple as the bamboo or capable of  generating change from within, rigidity leaves only three possibilities of change—explosion, implosion or crack-up (rupture).

What does Prime Minister Wickremesinghe and the UNP parliamentary group’s rigidity reveal? It reveals three characteristics. One is ossification—the inability to generate change. They are stagnant and static. The other is that of arrogance. The third is myopia, the inability to see beyond their collective nose.

If the PM does not resign and manages to squeak past the no-confidence motion, how is he going to govern? The SLFP or most of it will leave. The government will crack up.

It will also lose its two-thirds majority. The JO and SLFP will form a strong opposition. The Judicature Act (making for Special Courts) has already been deemed to need a two thirds majority in Parliament since some of its clauses are inconsistent with the Constitution. Even legislation which needs only a simple majority may be blocked by the President. 

Soon, the PM and the UNP, with or without the TNA, will run into stormy weather. There have been periods like this when the UNP was well past its midpoint and headed rapidly downhill though it didn’t know that. The years 1953-1956 and 1967-1970 are cases in point. It is not only the UNP that has experienced this accelerated downturn. I vividly recall the United Front government of Madam Bandaranaike in 1974-1977, from the Government Printer’s strike through to the Peradeniya student shooting, the student uprising island-wide, the railway strike, the general strike and the break-up of the government. Radicalization is rife at this stage of the game.

Only Ranasinghe Premadasa was able to turn things around even at this late stage but he had been Prime Minister –and a dissenting one– for a whole decade before he was given the Presidential nomination in 1988. However, if Sajith Premadasa were given the Presidential candidacy in 2019, he would be unable to turn things around, because the damage done by Ranil Wickremesinghe to the economy and the party would be far greater than that done by the Jayewardene administration.

If the PM squeaks through today’s no-confidence motion, he will not regain social legitimacy or popularity, nor will his and Mangala’s economic policies win the government any votes. The UNP will lack the social shock-absorber and human shield that the SLFP provides because it will leave government, so keen is it to put a distance between itself and socially toxic Ranilist UNP which brings in its wake a predictable electoral disaster next year.

Reports disclose that President Sirisena warned the UNP against propping itself up with TNA votes in parliament. Evidently a UNP Minister was shocked and said that the President has forgotten his own reliance on the TNA in January 2015. “Sirisena had also warned the United National Party (UNP) that it would be political suicide for Wickremesinghe to defeat the no-confidence resolution by getting the votes of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA). Leaning on the main minority Tamil party would alienate the nationalist vote of the Sinhalese majority, Sirisena had argued, only to be told that he too had won the January 2015 election thanks to the minorities, including the Tamils.” (EconomyNext, April 03, 2018)

What the UNP fails to understand is that (a) 2018 is not 2015  (b) a Presidential election is not a motion of no-confidence on a vast fraud and (c) Maithripala Sirisena, the General-Secretary of the moderate nationalist SLFP and former acting Defense Minister (on occasion) of a war winning administration, is not Ranil Wickremesinghe. When Maithripala Sirisena obtains TNA support, the optics are quite different from when Ranil Wickremesinghe does so (and on a shameful bond scam too). Sirisena could afford to; Wickremesinghe cannot.

If it is propped up by the TNA today, Ranil’s UNP which already has a target painted on its front, will have another painted on its back. TNA support may keep Ranil afloat in Parliament for the moment, but it would sink the UNP at upcoming elections and thereby sink itself as well.

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Latest comments

  • 11
    1

    This D-Day will become SLPP’s, MR’s and BR’s Dunkirk; you will have to do a humiliating retreat. Or even better MR will be like Field Marshal Von Paulus at Stalingrad; an ignominious surrender with 600,000 German troops. This is MR’s Dunkirk and Remagen. Or this will be Al-Alamein for the Germans/MR. RW is like General Montgomery. MR is like Hermann Goering more than Rommel. So lose you shall.

    Yes your boy will L-O-S-E big time.

    MR will lose. SLFP will split in vote; Most ministers have been bought up already with millions of rupees. So Dayan, come Thursday you will have to cry again and spin the utter rank defeat. This is V-Day for RW and DEFEAT DAY for MR and your boys. Get this one. Take this to the bank and deposit it.

  • 9
    1

    I have never seen an ‘educated’ moron as foolish as Dayan. Prime Minister has to resign for just one blunder? In Sri Lanka??

    In that case, during the 9 years of his rule, the past president should have resigned more than 10 times for all the huge mistakes and blunders. We have still not forgotten the hedging blunder, a massive financial loss to the country and many other blunders. This is Sri Lanka man (not Peru), our leaders do not resign for such blunders.

    • 1
      0

      Dayan depitakattuawa s kurmanm aellima ended up in vain again.

      I always believed that DECENCY will win it.

      RW is a decent man. All the media is against him just because he behaves civilized.

      Lanken people are more into rascals than to the opposite.

      Pigeons are mixed with wild cats. Unfortuantely pigeons are the minority in this country.

  • 0
    0

    Why Sri lankan LAW is this weak. IT looks there is no law enforcement at all. Executive PResident looks just a puppet and do not have even the powers of a rebellious MP to get more consecctions from the bond thief. PResident is doing the functions of christian who is the buddha sasana minsiter. He killed tuskers and tusks are not where t be found. NOw, he wants to ban vesak celebrations. rishad Bathiuddin had to be handled by non – politicians. John amaratunga is another wastage of money. Why there is no law enforcment. You are also talking issues and people. but, you shold talk the system and how it can go wrong because of the way it was set up to protct financial scandles.

  • 0
    0

    Pm is just one issue. PENT HOUSE RAVI is not yet arrested even though he was proved to be a lier and a money launderer. there are many MPs who were arrested. but, they stayed in the prison hospotal and back in the parliament. Some were acquitted either by judges or by they themselves approving modified legislation. So, why the Sri lankan system is rotten. Eve the PResident is pakying games. HE is not a saint and/or he doe snot know what he is doing.

  • 6
    1

    Do not worry too much . Ranil will win and you will never get any post once again. Sorry to say this.

    • 2
      0

      So true… ha ha

  • 3
    2

    Getting TNA support is political suicide. Hope better sense will prevail and Ranil will win without Tamil Nadu Aliens.

    Sirisena has back stabbed Ranil too!

    • 0
      0

      Deja vu. Hoppers again

  • 2
    0

    Ranil can always make himself the winner.
    1. If the NCM is passed with the support of SLFP, he could say he wants to withdraw from the Unity Government and form his own government.
    Ranil already has 106 seats as one party. If the necessity of a Vote is arose, through a good political dialogue, he can garner the support of TNA’s (16), SLMC’s (1), may be, JVP (6). The total will be 129.
    Then they will unanimously select Ranil as the PM and inform the President that they have more than the required number to form a government. President has no choice but to accede to this.
    .
    2. Even if the NCM is defeated, Ranil can still say that he lost the confidence in President and the SLFP and that he wants to withdraw from the Unity Government and form his own government. .
    What can the President do? Nothing. After that, President won’t have any say in the Government or even in the Cabinet as his party is not in Ranil’s Alliance. He will completely lose control over Ranil.
    .
    JOkers bringing an NCM is ok. But the scenario will become totally different, if SLFP voted in favour of the NCM. Any backup plans, JO? :D :D :D

  • 0
    1

    “What the UNP fails to understand is that (a) 2018 is not 2015 (b) a Presidential election is not a motion of no-confidence on a vast fraud and (c) Maithripala Sirisena, the General-Secretary of the moderate nationalist SLFP and former acting Defense Minister (on occasion) of a war winning administration, is not Ranil Wickremesinghe”

    BTW, had you explained why the nationalists voted for a Juda of a war-winning administration, RW (along with the Bond-scam) would have seen a saint.

  • 4
    1

    This man Dayan not only hates TNA but also frightfully scared.
    Dayan: You have jumped over every fence looking for a job. Why not try TNA? Make sure you have the EPRLF Report Card handy.

    • 0
      0

      K Pillai
      I don’t agree with you. Dayan has a good brain and he is a good fighter too. He should represent the country in Geneva again as Ambassador/PR. He can take the country out from the Geneva mess easily.
      If I am President, I will cross-post Ravinatha to London and Dayan to Geneva.

  • 5
    1

    A parasite talking about ethics. Should you even look at the rest of the article?

  • 7
    1

    The public Racist Dayan Jayatilleka types:

    “He doesn’t think it was wrong to import and implant Arjuna Mahendran, a non-citizen, as Governor of the Central Bank despite the advice of the President and a clear issue of a conflict of interest.”

    This is bit rich coming from the would be Gota’s b***s carrier.
    Perhaps defense was not that important to be trusted with a US citizen.

  • 4
    0

    Well well Dayan.

    If you love the UNP and believe in its values then you know what is right for the UNP. All the decisions made by RW as you outlined were really uneccesary and made in poor taste. Obviously there were no monetary considerations involved. Hopefully the green party can salvage the situation somehow . We all know how, including R W.

    If you love this country you may want to consider supporting a strong stable dictatorship because democracy is a failure.

    But do not expect Sri Lankan politicians to resign. It is not done. Not can they be held to foreign standards.

  • 6
    0

    Nihal Jayawickrama says it all – pseudo intellectual gobbledygook – but then andaya’s son must make a living

  • 1
    1

    Mano Ganeshan and Rishad Bathiuddin are voting Against the NCM. So, we definitely know they don’t care as long as the Fraudsters run the country if they get minister posts and promote Tribalism and Religious extremism while islamizing and Tamilizing the country with morw Indian Estate Tamils. rishad Bathiuddin knows that even the president supports him. Presidet would say, I am not.

  • 8
    0

    “Prime Minister Wickremesinghe hasn’t resigned, it is quite simply because, firstly, he doesn’t know right from wrong and secondly, he doesn’t know how to conduct himself in public affairs”

    What a joke Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka!
    When Mahinda Rajapaksa resigns and gives up his greed for power then you can ask this question of Ranil.

    You backed a man who tried to amend the constitution so that he could remain as President indefinitely…

    You lot failed to creat cracks in the UNP that you thought you could exploit.

  • 8
    0

    Dayan J Alzheimer,
    “D-Day In Parliament”?
    You may have forgotten given your medical condition, Battle of Normandy on D-Day was won by the ALLIED FORCES. And so, rest assured today’s BATTLE OF DIYAWANNA will mark THE END of whatever is left of corrupt Mahinda Raja, his cronies, and henchmen. Enjoy your FANTASY while it lasts, Mr. Alzheimer.
    Cheers!
    PS: 8th January bloodless revolution by now is a TRAIN WRECK. Thanks to self-serving, SPINELESS CROOKS of Yahapalanaya. In particular, that TURNCOAT President Sirisena. However, THE ENGINE of the revolution is still making painfully loud, slow, intermittent and incremental progress. Let us keep it on track for 2 more years the best we can. WE HAVE NO OTHER OPTION.

  • 5
    1

    Can you please tell us why Mahinda your guru, lord and master did not sign the NCM?

  • 4
    1

    Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka “..he (Ranil)doesn’t know how to conduct himself in public affairs in accordance with international norms, including those in Asia and the global South.”

    come on Dayan name a single Sri Lankan politician who conducts himself…(quoting your words) “… in public affairs in accordance with international norms, including those in Asia and the global South…”

    even you don’t ….so for gods sake stop writing rubbish…

  • 2
    0

    “He doesn’t believe in apologizing, taking responsibility for his huge mistake and resigning.”

    RW did a huge mistake, as you said. Why don’t you talk about deliberate actions / criminal actions of your favorite politicians that have cost human lives that are more valuable than money involved in Bond-scam? You value money than lives? Why are you always highlighting bond-scam and avoid talking of other worst crimes committed?

    All crimes should be dealt without an exception.

  • 4
    1

    Dayan J is dreaming. Just imagine every time in any country a local election vote goes against the central government there has to be a fresh mandate according Dr. DJ. Let me teach him politics. He and Maharaja’s Kili Mahendran must be thought a good lesson. A complaint has to be filed at the Bribery Com against Maharaja for obtaining a broadcast spectrum.

  • 3
    0

    Yah, right!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Your savior brought down his two brothers from the U.S. , violating the cardinal principle you cite “clear issue of a conflict of interest.” and they ruined the country through extra-judicial killings and plundering the state wealth (Mr. 10 percent, remember!). You are a sick case of dementia!!

  • 5
    0

    Like I said, BIG WIN for RW.
    46 vote MAJORITY.
    BYE BYE Dayan I am the expert because I have an obscure PhD Jayatilleke

    • 1
      0

      Watch this loser parasite Dayan will come up with some other cock and bull story.

    • 2
      0

      Thassim

      “BYE BYE Dayan I am the expert because I have an obscure PhD Jayatilleke”

      You are wrong you cannot include Tamil and Muslim MP in the total as their votes don’t count because they are not Sinhala/Buddhist MPs.

      Minority votes 46
      Abstention 28

      Total for Ranil 122
      Minus Minority votes 46
      Net total support for RW 76

      JO 78
      Abstention 28

      Net total for JO 106

      Clearly JO won the day.
      Shame Ranil lost, lost miserably.

    • 2
      0

      Not only Mahinda Rajapakse but also Dayan should accept the results and give up politics according to their conscience if they have one. The people don’t trust them, fellow politicians don’t like them, civil societies and professionals don’t like them. Only those underworld criminals, drug dealers, and blood thirsty racists like them. The NCM results clearly shows there is no place for hatred against other human beings and no place for thuggery.

  • 1
    0

    A simple matter of ethics, indeed. Dr DJ ought to make a prompt refund to his fees for gross misapplication of his rare, creative writing skills.

  • 1
    0

    In this here article Dayan Jayatillaka talks a lot about TNA – how they will vote etc. etc. etc.
    Now that NCM was defeated, he will start writing attributing the loss to the Treacherous Tamils.
    There is indeed a method in his stupidty.

  • 1
    0

    How now brown cow?

  • 1
    0

    Where were you when mahinda rajapakse siphoned off the tsunami relief fund?

    Where were you when the Hambantota port and mattala aiport were commissiomed? The two greatest economic curses our future generations have to incur.

    Where were you when the democratic socialist republic of sri lanka was transformed in to the kingdom of sri lanka with the draconian 18th amendment?

    Where were you when the voiceless tamils in the north were silenced forever in a humanitarian war in which ironically, not a drop of blood was spilt?

    Where were you when our national carrier became a personal carrier?

    Where were you when innocent men and women, journalists, businessmen, were kidnapped and murdered by state sponsored goons and henchmen?

    The list goes on and on dear sir.
    This country has been through and witnessed far greater crimes than this. I think its time you wiped your spectacles clean.

  • 0
    0

    Dayan should commit hara-kiri if he has any shame…

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