4 March, 2024


Don’t Cry For Me Sri Lanka

By Suranimala Umagiliya

“We are what we do repeatedly. Excellency, therefore is not an act but a habit” 

Oh what a country Sri Lanka is. On the surface everything seems Hunky Dory. Scratch the surface if you will and Lo and behold the worst is in plain sight. Warts, burns and scars. God bestowed a natural bounty and asked the simplistic peasants to enjoy it. They became thespians over time.


Hark back to the recent history of this nation. Vile as any can be. Led by politicians whose only focus is to gain and retain power, they appealed to the basest instincts of man. Having jostled a majority to fall in line with narrow, divisive politics in addition to a few through crumbs being thrown their way, the politicians helped themselves to disgraceful amounts of money through graft, bribery and corruption. Of course they justified the corruption as a necessary evil to raise party funds for their re election which will ensure that the peasants get a few more crumbs thrown their way.
The icing on the cake is that the peasants yet have faith and belief in them. And so as time went by it became worse and the loot got inflated. Another dangerous game was invented. Divide the people between the majority and the rest. Add religion to the race if you must, to bolster the equation. That is what we face, in Sri Lanka today.

With each President the levels of accountability, good governance slipped downward.

Corruption and the amounts involved climbed upwards. Greed has reached “No Limit”, a la the clothes outlet. Add to that murder, abduction and the infamous white vans, not to speak of murdering a journalist or few along the way are necessary evils to “Save the nation” from being divided. Can a country survive in this fashion? Yes. Subject to the vilest amassing filthy money and retiring in comfort, within the country or without, leaving the peasantry to eke out an existence. Generation after generation. The rest of the world will give us loans.


The Burghers were chased out in the late 50’s and 60’s. They went to UK and Australia. The third generation of Burghers are Doctors, Lawyers, Accountants, Public servants,living comfortable lives. They pay their taxes and their adopted countries give them living wages and more, to enjoy a very comfortable retirement with five star medical benefits.

The Tamils were accepted into more countries in the West after 1983. Their next generation are in Universities if not already serving as Doctors, Lawyers and Accountants. They too will get a more than a living wage, own houses, pay taxes, bring to them their extended families, who will also become Doctors, Accountants, Lawyers. All of them too will pay their due taxes and will benefit by getting a comfortable retirement with five star medical treatment.

This is not to leave out the Sri Lankans of the majority community and others who have secured employment overseas due to their professional qualifications, as and when required by such developed nations. They too fall in line and their next of kin go on to reap the benefits of living in a developed country.

Sri Lankans left behind in their thrice blessed land? What becomes of them?

They had to endure family rule of the worst kind. One brother the President, another Economic Minister, another Speaker of the House, another head of all the Security Forces and son an MP, wife a benefactor for pre school children, brothers in law as Ambassadors, Aunt as repository of Gems and the list is endless. Added to this lot are the Ministers and parliamentarians who amassed filthy lucre under that administration. But, they won the war ! Is that good enough to bring them back ?

The repressive regime of Rajapaksa’ was defeated. An inept, listless and a weak leadership followed showing that Sri Lanka has no statesmen nor an enlightened electorate demanding a better life for themselves and their children. We find a President exhorting the Police for arresting figures whom the Sangha thinks are “war heroes” in order to stay with the majority sentiments. A Prime Minister, who too is unable to assert authority by showing the way to his cabinet colleagues and the keepers of the law. Is it not wrong for legislators, be it a President, Prime Minister, Cabinet Minister, Member of Parliament to interfere with the law taking it’s course ?

The most talked of murders as in the rugby player Wasim Thajudeen, journalist Lasantha Wickrematunge and Prageeth Ekneligoda, are yet being investigated. A Deputy Inspector General of Police Anura Senanayake is in remand for messing with evidence into the Thajudeen murder. The murder was window dressed as an accident.


Doctors messed with the Post Mortem reports. A Rajapaksa government had to be changed to get to the truth. Wickrematunge was murdered by the military intelligence. A Deputy Inspector General by the name of Nanayakkara, Senior Superintendent named Adikari and an Inspector called Sugathapala are in remand for altering evidence recorded in Police logs, purportedly under instructions of The Inspector General of Police Wickramaratne. He has sought to delay such arrest by going to Court. Pray, why should an Inspector General wish to hide/alter Police logs in a murder case when his job is to find the murderer? Orders from the top or instinct says he knew who ordered the murder. The former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka and the former Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa blame each other for this murder. Surely, its one or the other by their own admission? Prageeth Ekneligoda is considered “missing” but for all purposes he too has been murdered by the Army ( I use this word in the absence of the Army investigating to clear it’s good name) and scattered beyond the horizon. What a nation. Top Police Officers are criminals.

Meanwhile the Maha Sangha are lulled by gifts such as Mercedes Benz cars and camouflage visits by top politicians seeking photo opportunities. They are made to “feel good” so as to appease the people drunk with the now fashionable Sinhala-Buddhist label. The GMOA gets involved in all the causes but does not come before the public to say that there are no infertility pills (Wanda Pethi) in existence. They should know. The teachers in schools carry pin up style posters offering tuition for hefty fees. The carnival goes on. Health services are free but the Doctors practise privately within a hundred meters from the hospitals they serve in.

Those who have means or a manageable income go about without a care expecting life to go on forever. Consider them ” I am alright Jacks”. As long as I am alright I need not bother. But it will catch up Sir/Madam. It will.

Consider the present. Sri lanka has a President elected by ousting the Rajapaksa regime in 2015, giving sane people some hope for a better future. Every political party combined to oust a dictator under whose watch all the murders. bribery, corruption and profligacy held sway. President Sirisena now wants to go to bed with one of the Rajapaksa’s who has several ongoing criminal investigations against him in progress. That is Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

Please Mr President, let Gotabaya Rajapaksa first clear his name in Courts before you thrust him in to political office. You may think it is the best way to get a second shy at the Presidency. It might happen. Peasants are gullible. But, you would forever have a doubt in your mind if you let loose a corrupt murderer, before he could prove himself to be innocent. Once a corrupt, criminally bent person gets into high political office, all sins disappear. Do not forget our legal system stinks too. It takes an average of over ten years to prosecute a case. Throw out selfish ideas. You owe it to the next generation.

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Latest comments

  • 7

    Suranimala’s excellent piece has produced a good discussion despite the blabberings of Jim Softly, Ramona, etc. But their blabberings are necessary for amusement.

    • 8

      What torments go through victimized Thadjudeen family by date ?

      If anyone in our families would have been picked away and killed out, how would it have been… ? I think our sinhalaya should protest against the killing of young rugby player. First it was through an accident, then again, it became clear it should not be through an accident, but through a plot made by Rajapakshe family.
      But nothing came to air, even if the inveistgations were held on and on. why ?
      Either lanken MEDIA men are fully disturbed by Rajapakshe or, The state is powerless as no other govt sofar.
      If Rajapakshes are against, any good moves, authorities can still stand against them.
      Why the law is being buried in this country ?
      What pledges they made at the time 62 lacks voted for them ?
      What penisless excutive PREZ we have today ?
      My gosh.. how many more months we have to wait until ballige putha murderous rajpakashe stay scot free not being surrendered to lanken law and order.

  • 6

    We all can write day and night about Sri lankan politics, culture, religion etc. etc. however the sad story is that we face a bleak future. Our politics , economy, culture all are nearing bankruptcy. Boasting about centuries old civilization not going to help us building a just society. We need new political and social thinking of how to get rid of social ills so embedded in our society. Latest is the racial hatred. Social harmony is one of the most important factor in developing the economy. Socio-economics of Tamil Muslim and Sinhalese of this country is cracking. Politics is to blame.Let us find a common ground have dialogues and establish a just society. It seems a long way.

  • 7

    Heart rending thoughts indeed, Surely the President and the Prime minister are quite aware of these inhuman, cruel criminal activities of the past regime . Leave alone the election promises ,don’t they have the sympathy of a mustard seed at least to enable them to bring justice to the victims of these heinous crimes.Is this the way you politicians are trying to protect and propagate the noble teachings of Lord Buddha. We are reluctantly compelled to believe that the real cause of all these illegal activities have the blessings and protection of the political leaders from top to bottom leaving only a handful who are unable to speak the truth fearing reprisal from their masters. This sort of delaying tactics are not knew ,we well remember
    the identical course followed by JR declaring an unofficial leave to the Forces. Please leave all Religions in the hands of the Clergy, let them guide their flocks and the politicians are not their custodians but should do well to remember that there is a spiritual dimension to politics and governance. Your days are numbered,
    writing is already on the wall. Repentance might be late. Having said so, we also know we are pouring water on a Duck’s back.

  • 9

    The problem is:

    The stolen 18 $ Billion has not been found.

    The killers of Raviraj and several other politicians have not been found

    The killers of Taraki-Sivaram and several journalists including Lasantha and Prageeth have not been found

    The killers of Thajudeen have not been found.

    Those who ran the white van network have not been prosecuted

    Those who manufactured pirates and ran guns have not been prosecuted.

    Those who trafficked human organs have not been hunted down.

    Those who forged deeds and stole properties have not been prosecuted.

    So what has been done…?

    • 0

      Nirmalan Dhas,

      It won’t be found as there is no real 18 $ billion money stack.

      • 2

        Hi Shenal,
        when would you stop being a backlicker ?
        Are u married, do you have second generations ? Do you want them to feel the way we felt it had been until 2015 ? Why you guys let idiotic power greedy men of Rajapakshe nature to rape you this way ? Why you guys cant sense it ? Why you go after Wimal Buruwanse who has not even olevels but a mouth set that could set alarm on based on his paranoic thoughts. He has not the least knowlwedge about world politcis, but a big mouths pleasing his master MR.
        What do your relatives say ? Are they educated enough to see it right ?
        Today even doctorate holders of DJ nature are made to bend down their both ends to JO for some selfish gains. But i dont think if your circles are educated, enough they would go the same path.
        Why you cant differentiate it man ?

        • 0


          You people say Mahinda has looted 18 billion dollars. Which amount close to the 3rd or 4th richest man in the world. Yet you people could not provide any evidence for its existence. Do you expect a common man like to me believe what you people say? Why should I believe you?

  • 1

    It is part of ‘political culture’ to steal public money, ask for bribes, Obtain Perks from the government and leave the citizens at lurch. Law does not affect the rich. It hurts only the poor who are unable to climb the steps of the ‘CROWN COURT’ to seek redress. Not that the poor will get it even if they do climbs the Steps.

  • 2

    The day after the 1977 general election there was the usual post election riots between the two maim political parties . I walked into the doctors mess in a leading hospital that morning send was shocked go hear a lady doctor from Colombo 7 educated in the most presetgios girls school telling her friend “ what are we fighting amongst ourselves when all our effort must be to oust the Tamils “ .
    If the so called intelligentsia of the country think like that ,support injustices by turning a blind eye to all atrocities for the past 60 years and benefit from it by taking the high posts most of which would have gone to Tamils if offered on merit alone ,our country has no salvation. Do not blame only the politicians for this mess .

  • 0

    Brilliant article which goes to the root of the hypocrisy and vileness of our politicians. A spineless, gutless, uneducated peasant who was raised to the position of a president by the eunuch, impotent leader of the UN:P. The people were conned into voting for these braggarts who promised to lock up the corrupt fuksha family but who have now gone to bed with these crooks. The people need to get out into the streets and string MS and RW by their balls for deceiving the citizens. These two bastards should not be given any mercy – cut them up and feed them to the dogs is the best remedy. The BBS mofs and yellow robed thugs should be buried with the garbage at meethotamulla. This is the only hope for Sri Lanka. The PM can still redeem himself a little by appointing Sarath Fonseka as deputy law and order minister to clean up the ministry and have all these mofs put in jail for life for murders, corruption, abductions and war crimes.

  • 0

    Title adopted from Major General Fernando’s Don’t Cry for me Sergeant Major article during the conflict.

  • 1

    Mr.Suranimala Umagiliya. This is a waste of energy. Our people led by the safron robed will never learn.Since 1977 they have been played out.

    Only hope is that some country will open their gates to us. and this country will go under the sea.

  • 1

    Beautifully expressed truths. This is what intellectuals should do. Thank you writer Suranimala . What a shame that writers like Dayan Jayatilleka are betraying our people.

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