3 December, 2022

Blog

Donor & IMF Assistance Should Not Be Used To Suppress The Rights Of The Tamil People

By C.V. Wigneswaran

Justice C. V. Wigneswaran MP

Honourable Speaker! I thank you for giving me this opportunity to participate in this debate. The present Appropriation (Amendment) Bill is presented to Parliament as an amendment to the Appropriation Act No. 30 of 2021. According to the new Amendment, for the year 2022, under which Government expenditure has been revised, it shows a massive increase in recurrent expenditure for public administration as opposed to the allocation under the previous Budget of 2022.

The Government should have reduced expenditure at a time of severe economic crisis that we undergo presently rather than raising it further while the public suffers from high inflation rates. If benefits were to be given to the penurious needy some other expenditure should have been cut down. Because inflation would not come down as the Central Bank was continuing to print money to meet expenses. A fortnight ago it printed Rs.30 billion according to reports. Unless the Government cuts down expenditure, including Capital expenditure, we would not be able to reduce the inflation rates and stabilize the economy. Of course reasons have been given for the increase in expenditure. But increase in expenditure would further increase the inflation rates.

In addition to public administration, a notable increase can be observed in the expenditure assigned for the President, for Defense, education and health.

The defense allocation has been increased and a sum of Rs. 212,808 million has been allocated to the Ministry of Public Security. A sum of only Rs.138,560 million has been allocated for agriculture in contrast. Such are the priorities. 

It appears we are not going to tarnish our reputation as the 14th largest Army in the World. Why does our small Country need such a large Army? Generally a Country would focus on the process of Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) after a War. These are essential to restore sustainable peace in a post-war scenario. We should have reduced our Army personnel as soon as the war was over or at least a few years later. We have today 331,000 Army personnel officially as opposed to Britain’s 90000. This number is to be further reduced by Britain soon. The DDR is one of the significant aspects of the process of post-war peace-building. Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) is a process that contributes to security and stability in a post-war recovery context by removing weapons from the hands of combatants, taking the combatants out of military structures and helping them to integrate socially and economically into society by finding civilian livelihoods for them. But those who fought the war are still in our Armed Forces. Some of them are still working in the combat areas.  It is high time they are taken out of the North and East and reintegrated into the civil society.

In most of the cases world over, this process has been implemented with the assistance of foreign governments and international or regional institutions. However, the circumstances under which the Government of Sri Lanka happened to take over the sole responsibility for implementing the DDR process have raised serious concerns both at the local and international level. The findings of a recent study show that the DDR process was not fully implemented in a broad manner in the Sri Lankan context, but only served as a continuation of the military victory over the LTTE. In particular, not much attention was paid to disarming and demobilizing the armed groups, and the so-called DDR process took place in Sri Lanka without international assistance and supervision. One would think that the Sri Lankan powers that be had a purpose in keeping out international assistance and supervision. I would surmise it is to keep the North and East under the Military boot.

This coupled together with the expenditure for the armed forces in the Amendment Bill show that there has not been any changes in the psyche of the powers that be in Sri Lanka even after the aragalaya. Thoughts of Sinhala hegemony still reigns heavily in their minds.

All the talk about an All Party Government becomes a mockery in the light of such continuous military spending. Therefore the clarion call to unity is an empty shell. The Government under the present President wants to continue to spend large amounts of money to maintain our 14th largest Army. It has no intention of forging any form of reconciliation with the minorities. 

And whom is the Government expecting a war with? Against India? Against China? Against America? Or even against Maldive Islands? No ! They expect an attack from us poor Tamils of the North and East!  Because the government believes that the Tamil people will not continue to endure against the Sri Lankan state’s continued oppression and genocide. That is why the Sri Lankan Government preferred to conduct the so-called DDR process without international assistance and supervision. They want the presence of the Military permanently in the North and East.

Sri Lanka’s economic crisis is due to many factors. One major factor was the war and the money that Sri Lanka borrowed to buy destructive weapons. Another is the massive corruption among Government and Defense department officials.

A further major reason for the crisis was the ethnic cleansing that forced most of the Tamils to quit small businesses, high tech-related jobs, manufacturing trades, exportation and training, impeding Sri Lanka’s economic development, managerial efficiency, and productivity. The State by its shortsighted racial policies sabotaged itself.

Earlier racial discrimination against the Tamils forced many of them to leave Sri Lanka. They are the Tamils who are now offering to pull the chestnuts out of the fire for Sri Lanka if the political problems of the Sri Lankan Tamils are solved. 

All of the erstwhile racist activities led Sri Lanka to this economic crisis. It did not happen overnight. It started with the ethnic riots of 1958.

Israeli Professor Oren Yiftachel has said ethnocratic countries often experience ethnic tensions which cause instability. Therefore, as long as Sri Lanka remains an ethnocratic country, there will continue to be instability. This will never lead to sustainable peace and economic prosperity as expected by His Excellency.  The fact that you have increased defense spending to keep the army in the North-East and to establish massive military infrastructures and settlements to continue oppressing the Tamil people shows the instability that will continue in the future.

After thirteen years since the end of the war why is the Military being allowed to occupy our Peoples’ lands and buildings, our forests and shores? 

The existing problems that the Tamils face which were brought to the notice of the President are conveniently forgotten in the Speech. We feel though the President had positively responded to our queries regarding the day to day problems the Tamils face apart from the need to solve the political problems of the Tamils, he prefers to remain silent in Parliament regarding our problems lest he disturbs a hornet’s nest.

I am reminded of Robert Walpole who was Prime Minister of England in 1715 or thereabout whose policy was “Let sleeping dogs lie”. May be because our Tamil Youths in recent times have not resorted to Aragalayas in their areas he believes we are but sleeping canines, best left to be unsaid and unreferred to. But am sure this time Geneva would reiterate its stand quite positively.

I like to remind the contents of my request letter to which His Excellency responded to positively. His Excellency promised to release all Tamil political prisoners. Nothing has come out from that promise. It is said that there is a move to release some persons taken into custody on suspicion after 2019 just in time for the Geneva deliberations. None are going to be fooled by such gimmicks if they be true.

If the case of the Tamil Political Prisoners, some of them languishing in jails for over quarter of a century is not going to be considered in a humanitarian manner considering the long period of incarceration and the type of diseases that have been contracted by some of them, I am wondering if any Tamil Parliamentarian could be ethically and morally be called upon to join in an All Party Government. Many of these Prisoners had been found guilty solely on their confessions made to Police officers under the PTA. Such confessions to Police officers cannot be accepted as evidence under our regular criminal law. That was why I had asked for the release of the Tamil Political Prisoners and for the scrapping of the draconian PTA from our statute books. Instead, it is being now used against the Aragalaya leaders. These leaders would soon be called Terrorists.

Any attempt to bring in diverse political viewpoints together under one umbrella must be preceded by genuine acts of goodwill towards those holding such viewpoints. It is useless saying join us and I will give you a free hand to express your views. The moment a Tamil Parliamentarian joins the Government he would lose his freedom of speech. Majority in the governing Party will rule the roost! I hope the Tamils whose names have been included in a Ministerial list recently would wait till the Geneva deliberations are over before taking office.

I have no objections to attending a meeting of Party leaders friendly towards this Government to put forward the viewpoints of the Tamils. 

Finally, my request to the donor countries and the IMF is that in this difficult situation for Sri Lanka, you should definitely help to save the people of Sri Lanka from starvation, but please see that you do your assistance in such a way that your assistance is not used to suppress the rights of the Tamil people and be used for defense expenditure

Thank you.

*Address by Justice C.V. Wigneswaran M.P. in Parliament debate on the Appropriation (Amendment) Bill second reading today.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 17
    1

    The conditions laid down by IMF before granting the bailout package is not public, yet.
    Sri Lanka is never faithful to its obligations, conditions or not.
    .

    • 14
      2

      Fools paradise, what do you expects
      2500 old civilization, champions of Guatam

      • 4
        2

        USA which engages in Human Rights Doublespeak has 750 military bases all over the world! USA is militarizing the Indian Ocean with QUAD and AUKUS and wants to land grab in Sri Lanka to set up a military base and taken over the Yugadanavi power plant to supply energy to its war machine in the Muthurajawela area.

        Mannar and Pooneryn for Adani and BlackRock will ensure that the US-India will get their military base to fight China in Sri Lanka with the IMF bailout and the Western Sovereign Bond debt trap!
        Sri Lanka’s military needs to be modernized to fight HYBIRD CYBER WAR and Bio-warfare operations waged by the biggest Rogue State in the world, all over the world.

    • 5
      1

      Yes it’s Sinha le ,but got good cover of Buddhism, top of the mountains under the trees any coroners junction parks where ever you turn around…..
      Is that makes fully …

  • 15
    1

    The biggest flaw of the State of Sri Lanka is that it does not possess an iota of CREDIBILITY!
    Ditto for the Executive, the Legislature, the Judiciary, and Public Administration.

    • 4
      11

      CM
      The IMF does not seem to think so.

      • 9
        1

        The IMF has no choice. If Sri Lanka sinks there could be a chain reaction that will cause some other countries also to follow suit and that might destabilize the entire global economy.

        • 2
          2

          CM
          If it has no choice, of what relevance is the issue of credibility?

          • 4
            3

            The IMF does not care who sinks or swims.
            If at all, it will like to see quite a few Asian countries sink.
            It simply takes instructions from the US in such matters.

      • 8
        0

        In my view international lenders. and UN bodies believe in “constructive engagement” rightly or wrongly.This is a long rope for countries that are not credible, improving while within the fold.

        Im only wondering why this country has to go for loans.. Who is responsible for the leak ?.

        Remided of the Jamaican song “theres a hole in the bucket !
        Some one in the US told me we are like their Jamican neighbours.

        • 4
          4

          F
          The way things are heading UK and much of Europe will be like their Jamaican neighbours, for whose plight as well the US again has much to answer for.

      • 13
        6

        SJ, you are subtle racist. Anything to do with the Tamils or the minorities, you tend to question that.

        • 13
          5

          You only realized this now? I knew this long ago. Will side with all the anti-Thamizh and come to their assistance, even when they virulently attack Thamizh. Most times openly and many subtle justify the discrimination and marginalization of the island’s Thamizh. Some self hating Thamizh, who thinks he is above the rest

          • 4
            1

            Pandi Kutti, I was too busy attacking other racists and missed this subtle racist.

            CT is filled with backward country asses from both sides. Too bad, these vile humans have only evolved to be racists.

        • 6
          8

          The biggest weakness of Tamils, both politically and in terms of social development, is NOT asking questions. If you don’t ask questions, you don’t get answers and you have no way of correcting your errors. And you will make your problems worse. If people have questioned Tamil social structures, we won’t be seeing caste-based marriage advertisements in the Virakesari; if Tamils had questioned the shooting of St John’s principal Anadarajan, a militant movement may not have evolved into a fascist outfit, taking tens of thousands of Tamils to massacre. If more professors had asked questions, the University of Jaffna Council would have made better decisions. So, questioning is healthy. It seems to me what you don’t like are the answers! That, Sir, certainly makes you a Tamil from the north.

          • 9
            3

            Marrying according to caste is not just unique to the Tamils alone, but all people in South Asia including the Sinhalese and all South Asian Muslims including the ones living in Pakistan and Bangladesh practice this. If not caste there is a pecking order of class, clans and tribes amongst other people. Therefore trying to justify institutionalised marginalization, and discrimination by the Sri Lankan state on the island’s Tamils, stating they follow a caste system to arrange marriages is silly and stupid in my opinion when the same Sinhalese discriminates against the Tamils practice caste system too. These social practices have been followed for thousands of years and are gradually disappearing fast. However, as you stated is undesirable and needs to be questioned. This does not justify state marginalizating Tamils. Yes, questioning is healthy when asked without mischief and malice with the genuine intent to reform and improve society. Questions are mischievously and deliberately asked to divert attention and justify what is happening are not justified.

            • 7
              3

              The assassination of St. John’s principal, who was very paly with the occupying Sinhalese armed forces is a tragedy but what has that got to do with the state discrimination of Tamils? Lots of Sinhalese politicians and other personalities in the world also get assassinated, people question and do not a question but do not use it as a tool to discriminate against others. What a lame excuse. I am sorry if it was a personal tragedy for you. In South Africa various black tribes used to fight with each other, just because it happened. yo meant to state apartheid was justified.

          • 3
            5

            SAV
            You may be called a racist by the duo above for questions which are more embarrassing than any I have raised.

          • 5
            6

            TftN
            Did you have a bad dream? Or woke up on the wrong side of the bed?
            Do you think that I criticize IMF deals because of any Tamil or other ‘minority’ involvement?

            • 4
              5

              Oh, is it that the picture of this man CVW (now baiting for a ministerial post) a source of hallucination?

              • 3
                0

                SJ, why cannot an educated ex-supreme court chief justice try for a senior role in the government, when a grade 8 educated 5 time loser (Basil) hold the position of Finance Minister? The most uneducated village country asses like the Rajapaksas can hold the high office, a lawyer cannot? This is where you hide all your racist thoughts as honest comments.

            • 2
              0

              SJ, I have read many of your comments besides the ones in this thread, they are filled with prejudice. I am from the north but left the country close to 40 years ago as we could not live with nasty fellows from the south and the LTTE fellows in the north. Murderous bastards from both sides have ruined this country. You may not realize the prejudice you hav in your heart as it appears normal to you as you are a racist.

        • 3
          6

          If questioning anything is racism, you must have your h*** examined.
          What matters is whether the questions are reasonable or not.

        • 5
          5

          SJ is anything but a racist. Besides, why can’t a Tamil be a racist? Is that a privilege of the Sinhalese alone?

          • 8
            5

            Yes for Chingkalla racists and extremists, who cunningly misinform and constantly post anti-Thamizh comments, Thamizh Quislings are not racists but darlings, that need to be nurtured and praised .

            • 4
              2

              PK
              Am I on the hit list of an y of the late Thambi’s minions?
              Just curious.
              Well, it may help in a way: I could arrange with Jayaratnes or Raymonds in anticipation.

          • 4
            2

            Paul,
            Thanks.
            The point is that SJ is called a Sinhala/Muslim/Burgher/Malay/whatever-else it may be racist by these secular minds– but not a Tamil racist.

          • 3
            0

            Paul, you think only Sinhalese are racist? There are many Tamils who are racists. We lived in the north and it disgusted me to hear some of the comments made towards the Sinhalese. Racism is a disease my friend!!! It is the weapon a loser uses to attack the victorious.

    • 4
      0

      CM/
      This is common to many in developing world but u may be right since Rajapakshes have been in power this lost its control with so called judges and lawyers thrown to biased mode.
      .
      And the most ridiculous thing/ they are held above by slanken media yet today. So the mafia lies on Media than anywhere else.🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔

  • 6
    1

    There are lot of diaspora wants to comes and invest in big/small scale ,even prepared to bring the capital from proper channel, but in reality
    In the north and East the amount of forces we have sadly just blind of crimes ,the addicts going around terrifying robbing people given free hand roaming around with swords
    When under VP a young woman can walk on her own night time ,that dosent make him a hero for me.
    Now “Sir” is coming back but Sangam expectations are ,he stick with the principles like Hitler/VP or goes to US embassy to proceed to joim for adopted and secure country. Like so many of patriotics, not the system change the mentality,
    Cancel the dual citizenship

  • 12
    4

    From the time of independence other than the Chingkallams and the South Indian origin Sri Lankan Moors, two people who largely contributed to the island’s downfall with their racism, religious bigotry, selfish opportunism, fake origins and myths, everyone and everything else needs protection. The Muslims almost doubled their population from around 6% to the present 10%. The Chingkallams from around 66% to 75%. Every other ethnic group, especially the Thamizh ( from around 28% to 16%) and even the flora fauna and wildlife have all declined and need protection. Looks like evil and evil people thrive on adversity and on the adversity of others. However, they are also greatly helped by international institutions like the IMF, the west and Hindia. Even the UN. They all whilst paying lip service to just Thamizh rights in practice, to the opposite, as they want to curry favour with the Chinkallams, as they are ruing, therefore give overt and covert support to their racist agenda, to marginalize and destroy the island’s Thamizh, thinking they can keep China at bay and win over the Chingkallams. They are in for a surprise. Please do not cry Vigeswaran as the IMF< the West, Hindia or Britain who created this mess are not going to offer any protection to the Thamizh. In fact, will be the opposite and then lament about Thamizh's rights.

  • 5
    2

    First and foremost, IMF should lay down the condition that all crooks in the government – from the Central Bank robber at the top to the criminals in the cabinet – should be fired from their positions and charges filed against them. You don’t give money to a thief to rescue his victims.

    • 5
      0

      Do you have other thieves in mind for the IMF to lend to?

  • 8
    1

    IMF needs to make sure that they are dealing with a genuine Peoples Government and not an unpopular one.
    IMF should also make sure none of their money is spent on suppressing both Tamils and Aragalaya movement.

  • 0
    3

    If the MPs that represent the Tamil Speaking SL citizens REALY CARE about them, they should give an ultimatum to GoSL TO provide solutions to ethnic issues. Failing to do so should lead to resignations of their MP posts. We can not be dragging on and on.

    • 3
      1

      N
      Seriously, what do you think the IMF is?
      Again, when did any Tamil MP other than SJVC ever resign his seat over an issue?
      Given the public mood in the North, SJVC was certain to win his seat, but no other would gamble his seat over anything that may be called a principle.

  • 6
    1

    The current poarlous state of sinhala land is a result of the outcomes of the attempts and actions to marginalise the and sinhalas progroms against the ceylon tamils and the better view is that that the result is that the ceylon tamils have become a very powerful diaspora evidence of which is the sinhala land’s continuous negativity by the UN and international agencies!! and even better the attempt by sinhala land to woo ceylon tamil diaspora monies flows to by any standard a BANKRUPT sinhala land

  • 4
    1

    SJ
    If you are refering to the Russian gas cut and financial squeeze in the. west,Ya right !.
    NATO is not at all perfect.
    I am still left wondering why the leadership , of these Island nations have their citizenship,assets, and childern , based in the west.?

    The lifestyle of the lefty bloc in Kensington, Chelsea and the US Yatch ports is a ripp off.To me It smacks of hypocrisy like Gorge Orwells Animal farm on the unsuspecting voter.

    But if the voter welcomes it come elections lets March the Myanmar route to Beijing in the joys of adult franchise, singing “hole in the bucket”.

  • 2
    3

    There was good news for interfering hypocrites when Gota landed in Singapore. “We are excited, this is a moment of opportunity,” said Sooka. Now that Gota has returned home to retire and draw his pension she feels he is ‘unlikely’ to be investigated by anyone. “The political class will protect him, and despite him fleeing, the structures and loyalties he relied upon are still intact” she told CNN. Of course they are, you supported the Aragalaya’s demand that he goes home – he’s gone home.

    • 0
      0

      Not agreeing with the Zooka report is one thing and its, anyones prerogative.Ther reference is to political ideology.

      I dont know Zooka, but is this lawyer preaching one thing while holding property in kensington Chelsea. ect and Yatchs in the US. ???
      If she did on her salary I belive she will be sacked for corruption

      Im actully refering to corrupt politicians, and not every lawyers argumen I dissagree with as hypocrysy . Im not a marxist and thats my point.

      I Wonder if there is a hope of debating the subject

  • 0
    0

    Not agreeing with the Zooka report is one thing and its, anyones prerogative.The reference is only to political ideology.
    I dont know Zooka,
    but is this lawyer preaching one thing while holding property in kensington Chelsea. ect and Yatchs in the US. ???
    If she did on her salary I belive she will be sacked for corruption

    Im actully refering to corrupt politicians, and not every lawyers argument I dissagree with as hypocrysy . Im not a marxist and thats my point.

    I Wonder if there is any hope of debating the subject

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 200 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically disabled after 5 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.