27 September, 2020

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Four Brothers To Maithri/Ranil Combo – The Jury Is Still Out

By Vishwamithra1984

“The measure of a man is what he does with power.” ~ Plato

The defection of Maithripala Sirisena from the ranks of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) has only one parallel in history. That was when C P de Silva, the then second-in-command of the SLFP-led government of Sirimavo Bandaranaike and thirteen MPs crossed over from the government ranks to the Opposition and voted against the governing coalition at the time. That was in 1964. The so-called double doctors in the caliber of N M Perera, Queen’s Council-level legal luminaries such as Colvin R de Silva and Felix Dias Bandaranaike were stumped and humiliated by J R Jayewardene, the most astute politician Sri Lanka has seen in her last six decades after Independence. In one of the most remarkable parliamentary coups ever to have been orchestrated, the government of Sirimavo Bandaranaike was defeated in parliament.ranil-and-maithripala-pic-by-pmd

Such a dramatic event, however, did not happen in 2014. Yet the announcement by Maithripala Sirisena, the sitting General Secretary of the SLFP and Minister of Health in Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Cabinet to leave the Mahinda-led coalition government and contest as a Common Candidate backed by the United National Party (UNP), the arch rival of the SLFP, had all the elements of a blockbuster event in a modern political scenario. Sirisena’s move was a bold one. Unlike the C P-crossover in 1964, which had the desired result of defeating the government of Sirimavo Bandaranaike as a fait accompli, Maithripala’s gambit did not assure any certain result. In fact, it was one of the most daring political moves enacted by any political leader since Independence.

In a bitterly fought election, Maithripala prevailed and he did solely because of the Tamil and Muslim vote plus the UNP vote. It is beyond question that Maithripala would not have secured the eventual result, if not for the UNP vote and Sirisena knows it. Sirisena carried his own district, Polonnaruwa, without much of a fight, but the rest of the country where the minority vote was not a deciding bloc, he lost. For example, deeply Sinhalese-Buddhist districts like Ratnapura, Anuradhapura, Monaragala, Kalutara, and the entire Southern province where the minority vote is not of a reckonable magnitude, Mahinda won handsomely. However, Sirisena carried the districts that have highest populations, Colombo, Kandy and Gampaha and swept those districts that are heavily minority-dominated- the North and the East.

Unlike the United States of America which elects her President on the Electoral College system, Sri Lanka elects her President on the popular vote. No President in Sri Lanka can be elected exclusively on the majority Sinhalese-Buddhist vote. Time and time again, it has been proven that the winner always gets a sizeable majority of the minorities in the country. Some might argue that this theory is not correct and they cite the election result in 2005 at which Mahinda was the victor. But don’t forget the boycott of elections in 2005 by almost 99% of the Tamils on the decree issued by Prabhakaran and it is beyond a shadow of doubt that this boycott was arranged between Prabhakaran and the then coalition party that ran Mahinda Rajapaksa as its candidate. Had the Tamils been allowed to vote in the North and East, Ranil Wickremesinghe would have become President in 2005! The ‘Four Brothers’ and their cohorts prevented it. Victory at any or all costs was the motto of the ‘Four Brothers’.

Such costs, Sri Lanka neither can afford, nor can she suffer. Presidential Election in 2015 marked, certainly not a revolution as some heavily-biased commentators interpret. As far as this writer is concerned, there was only one attempt of a revolution made in Sri Lanka and that was the famous April Insurrection in 1971 by the then Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) led by Rohana Wijeweera. What they attempted in 1987/’89 period was an endeavor to oust a democratically elected government by political terror, fear and murder. Innocent civilians were killed at random; political opponents were subjected to horrifying and shaming treatment and the whole country was in a grip of a fear psychosis; body-less heads were seen almost at every other culvert. It was not a revolution; it was a ruthlessly executed orgy of murder. Hence to call the 2015 elections a revolution is a total disfiguration of facts, figures and character of a real revolution.

Yet why most folks call it a revolution could be explained when the change the 2015 Presidential Elections caused is taken in the context of the high expectations the broad masses envisaged. And it is in that context the current administration led by Maithripala Sirisena and Ranil Wickremesinghe is being judged and prejudged. Certain strategic errors were committed by the Maithri/Ranil combo. Among them, but not limited to, are:

  1. Not dissolving parliament within days after the Presidential Elections
  2. Promulgation of a 100-Days Program
  3. Bringing into parliament some known Mahinda Rajapaksa-lackeys such as S B Dissanayake, Dilan Perera
  4. Going beyond a reasonably acceptable number of Cabinet Ministers
  5. Non-removal of Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran on the first signs of trouble and misdemeanor

Being elected on a platform of eradication of corruption, establishment of transparency and accountability, it is anybody’s reasonable expectations that such drastically imprudent decisions would not be made by the leaders of the new coalition- Maithri/Ranil Combo. Yet they made those irrational and sometimes idiotic decisions and they will have to pay for them unless they take some remedial measures almost immediately. Memories of our people are short; demands on their day-to-day chores are increasing exponentially in this fast, modern world. Smartphones and Facebook have become regular and necessary tools in their hands; PEO TVs are no more the exclusive possessions of the rich and in a world dominated by these modern-day gadgets, keeping information away from the general masses is simply not possible. Any attempts by those in power to hoodwink the masses the way the Rajapaksa regime did would be exposed by a very alert social media and galvanized civil organizations.

Maithripala Sirisena and Ranil Wickremesinghe have quite an unenviable task at hand. The sharpening of the minds of an otherwise dormant intelligentsia, a mission they undertook at the elections in 2015, might one day come back on them and bury them forever if they don’t stop being foolish. To show even the slightest tendency to accumulate more power and wealth would be disastrous. That is the cost of sharpening the minds of the general masses. They simply cannot afford to disregard the influence of the social media. Merely attacking the Rajapaksas has to lead to its logical conclusions such as bringing them before the law. The people will make up their own minds, if they have not done so already. The path of greed and avarice the Rajapaksas showed cannot be trekked by the Sirisenas and Wickremasinghes and their supporting crews in their respective party machines.

One last message for President Maithripala Sirisena: He seems to be obsessed with the notion of not to be the leader of the SLFP who would preside over its own demise. He must let that go. If the SLFP is going to dissolve as a political party, it would do so not because of President Sirisena, but because of various other factors amongst which are: the general degeneration of the party as a consequence of lack of discipline at the top, too much emphasis on ‘government’ as a solution to every problem, romanticist attachment to the party as a vehicle of the ‘common man’, lack of accountability built over a long period of time, a philosophical difference between the reasonableness of those who occupy a middle-ground and dependence syndrome enunciated in the policies of the party, thereby increasing dependence on politicians and their importance as saviors of the masses etc.

All in all, the people are beginning to lose confidence and faith that they ascribed to the Maithri/Ranil Combo at the beginning. Lack of timely responses to the various allegations hurled at them by the so-called Joint Opposition coupled with the notion that the stability of the present government is in question and allowing the SLFP MPs and Cabinet Ministers to criticize the UNP, their coalition partner, has contributed to the collapse of confidence of the people. In that context, it is pertinent to mention that neither any UNP Cabinet Minister nor any UNP MP has been seen as criticizing the SLFP, it was always the SLFP members (outside the Joint Opposition MPs) who have been seen as lacking in discipline. Twenty years in power has corrupted the minds of the SLFP ranks. It has been entrenched in them that power is forever. The fear of losing that power and any existence outside that power have gripped their minds and made them impotent. That fear of impotency is their tragic ailment.

But let us not prematurely pass judgment on the performance of the Maithri/Ranil Combo.

The jury is still out.

*The writer can be contacted on vishwamithra1984@gmail.com

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Latest comments

  • 2
    4

    Right now, Ranil is undercutting Maithripala sirisena to make him lose. Maithripala Should be aware of that.

    People also should give up loyalty to the parties. Instead people should vote to the individual again.

    Electoral system can be changed to adjust to every one’s need.

    • 4
      3

      And Rajapakshe has been doing anything and everything being close to any rural temples mobilising those monks to be ready as human shields as happened not to overlook the incident created in Mangalaramaya 9 weeks ago.
      Rajapakshe is the real threat to lanken peace. EU, Ameria, India, China, Russia and all other smaller countries will realize sooner than later.
      In Davo discussions will surely cause reinterprete all the messy thoughts of Rajaakshe in terms of proposed chinese projects.
      Jathiwadaya has become his cardiac tablets of the day since all other paths seem closing for the most abusive man (none other than Mahinda Rajakashe) who still has the power to create a new form of blood bath in this country.

      • 2
        1

        Ranil is the 5th brother of Mahinda Jarapassa. Ranil enabled the brothers to loot the country when he was in the opposition and is protecting them now.

        In a way bond scam Ranil who is selling Hambantota to China and the rest of Sri Lanka to America is the worst MR brother!

  • 3
    2

    From the current situation what we all got to know is, even if you make sky high promises, when meeting with ground realities of the lanken poisonous society, things can t be achieved the way the way expected. Be it with ethnic problem or trade, education, health it is TYPICAL srilanka.

    Each and every president elected made their manner all efforts they each could to abolish Epresidency expect the last president -Mahindaraja.. he did all the way around creating his familiys power consolidation.
    Even if I too joined hadn with late Rev. Thero with his pure thoughts to chase away the most abusive man of the nation to the time, by end 2014- to MR…. I never expected all the pledges made by Ranil/My3 WOULD easily be achieved in the same country, nation, where almost even tiny pacts were not allowed to get passed in the past.
    So, however by today, I am somewhat satisfied the way Rajaakshes have no piloting role of the plane heading to achieve set goal but with much hopes I join my friends struggle to see getting all the high sharks being caught by lanken laws for all the high profile crimes deliberately made by them.

    • 2
      1

      Applogies folks, my keyboard did not work properly last night: so I corrected my previous text as below;

      From the current situation what we all got to know is, even if you or anyone make sky high promises, when going to materilize them with lanken realities of poisonous society, not even tiny pacts can be implemented as history proves. So knowing these realities of the nation and society, put the blame alone on the leaders is no right as I see it.
      Be it with ethnic problem, trade, education, health or any good moves towards a better future will be interpreted by a group of extremist in favour of their political greediness. It is TYPICAL srilanka. We fought a war for a 1/3 of a century, but we remained with the same poisonous society; even worst since most abusive leader of the nation turned to be the leading devil. Looking at the manner former president makes and takes any decisions his kind of devious actions, that seem not supporting anything in this country – is a greater curse to lanken future.
      Alone being late to work relaying roller field of the BIA, should have done during the last 10 years instead of introducing MIA or any new airports to the country- – Analaysts say, the previous govt to delay the project says everything about the priorities of the previous so called regime.

      if the current project on BIA would have further been neglected, nothing would work for the country since Mattala is not yet welcome by IC as an international airport with their requirements. Besides, BIA has been known to the world for the last few decades and it has been a lost to the state these days cancellation of at least 20 flights /day these days-however until 6th of April.
      And the fact you cant force other airlines to divert their planes to Mattala so long the area is according to them not yet filled with the facilities.I truly believe president cousin – former SL ambassador to the US and his brother stolen huges sums from the Mattala airport project. May that and several other grabs are the allegations levelled at him being arrested for the last 2 months.

      Each and every president elected made their manner all efforts they each could to abolish Epresidency expect the last president -Mahindaraja.. he did all the way consolidating the power for his family.
      Considering all these, even if I too joined hand with late Rev. Thero in his pure thoughts to see a country wihtout Mahinda Rajapakshes leaderships by end 2014- …. I never expected all the pledges made by the both Ranil/My3 WOULD easily be achieved IN THE SAME ROTTEN COUNTRY sRILANKA .
      If things would have been much easier in the line of changing the attitudes of the majority- even in the past we should have succeeded with getting good pacts being passed and implemented accordingly.

      So, however by today, I am not Fully unsatisfied the way Rajaakshes have no piloting role of the plane, but with much hopes I join my friends that struggle to see getting all the high sharks being caught by lanken laws for all the high profile crimes deliberately made by them. if it would be tomorrow, that then will be the happiest DAY for all of us. We must serve the justice to all equally. Those torments of the families such as LW, Thadjudeen, Ekanaligoda and numerous others whose names are no in public, will emerge as curses if justice promised to them would not be served.

  • 5
    2

    Even as an outsider looking in and being able to travel to SL occasionally, I must say the most significant positive is the freedom of expression. Even State controlled print media we read from out here, is better than ever before. Not sure about State TV because I don’t watch that. No fear. But trash or rubbish is accumulating. The immaculate gardens and parks and walkways for the capital city and urban areas are looking dilapidated and people grumble as usual about the cost of living plus saying “nothing is happening” which we never heard under MR when there was a boom in building of roads, bridges everywhere specially in the North and East even if they made a mistake of not hiring enough Tamil companies to make money. Ferries replaced by bridges, roads to Jaffna etc were all accomplished by the so called corrupt brothers regime. Colombo looked spic and span; not anymore; it is back to being a third world dump. Everywhere I went, they were saying nothing is happening. Even Shangri La hotel where VIPS ministers play golf with their foreign returned siblings were projects completed by MR regime but only thing these fools did was to change opening stones and put their names on it. Every project they are opening as of now is a project started and almost completed by MR’s corrupt brothers.

    Corruption continues. No one asks how Sirisena can afford to educate his children abroad. The turncoats like Senaratne who betrayed MR are the biggest loudmouths and no one can say there are incorruptible. The corrupt are in a hurry because the UNP’s crooks were jobless for too long so just like last time they had their short lived government they do not know how long they have to make money for their granddaughters’ dowries so they are fattening themselves up so fast. Hoaxwagen is an example. Dudley Sirisena is a god now. my my my Rice..

    Looking forward to progressive legislation to stop prosecution of Gays thanks to Mangala. That will free a lot of the VVIPs from hiding in the closet.

  • 3
    4

    It is easy to get ALL the votes of a minority by poisoning their minds with false/exaggerated propaganda and offering unimplementable secret promises. Minority political leaders are foolish to fall prey to this malicious scheme, knowing well of the nature off cut-throat, hateful Sinhala politics. For the simple reason that one section of the equally divided Sinhala electorate is bigger than the whole minority and as a result the entire minority en bloc have to face the disapproval of a large section of Sinhala population. This obviously is most harmful to race relations and not at all conducive to their own interests.(Muslims may not like to hear the words they were referred to by Rajapaksha supporters after the elections.) FROM NOW ON ENTIRE MUSLIM COMMUNITY WILL HAVE TO BEAR THE BRUNT OF THIS HIGHLY ASYMMETRICAL DIFFERENCE.

    Tamil political leaders as usual played their 60 year old game of aligning with one party duped by impractical promises. For my life I can’t understand the wisdom behind this strategy to solve a ‘national problem’.

    In the interests of peaceful race relations I wish if Sirisena won with MAJORITY (not ALL) of Tamil votes, MAJORITY (not ALL) of Muslim votes and MAJORITY (not ALL) of Sinhala Buddhist votes. Unfortunately he won with ALL Tamil votes, ALL Muslim votes and leas than 50% Sinhala Buddhist votes.

    Soma

    • 3
      3

      somaaasssss

      “It is easy to get ALL the votes of a minority by poisoning their minds with false/exaggerated propaganda and offering unimplementable secret promises.”

      It is even much easier to get votes of a majority by poisoning their minds with false/exaggerated promises, Sinhala only language policy in 24 hours (which was failure, we still see the trail of destruction, which has been reversed by Hindians, Dharmista governance utter lie, free rice from the moon, …… ….

      And now you want to declare thee entire island a ghetto for Sinhala/Buddhist racists.

    • 2
      0

      You are telling the truth if it is also valid to Rajaakshe tactics with his fine and devious nature to outreach the easy targets of sinahala population whose majority make up70% rural folks.
      It is the nature of politicians even in Europe for voter grabs. But this game is not successful with majority folks in the Europe, but poor countries such as ours, majority folks are the ones being abused on and on. That proves the ground reality of the situation.

    • 1
      0

      soma,

      You are simply twisted individual! You are basically threatening the minorities with majority aghast and resulting consequences! Your threats will not work and the Tamils in Particular have seen it all!

      Recognising the Tamil areas constitutionally is well over due and a democratic necessity. You need to come to terms with this basic fact. It will do for your wellbeing and reach nirvana!

      • 0
        0

        Recognising the Tamil areas constitutionally is well over due and a democratic necessity.

        burning issue. go to Tamilnadu.

        Even Tamilnadu was not yours until 1964.

        • 2
          0

          Prophet jim softy the dimwit peace be upon you.

          “Even Tamilnadu was not yours until 1964.”

          Was it yours before 1964?

          If true why did you leave?

          Peace be upon you

        • 0
          0

          Jim,

          Who are you to tell me where to go?

          • 1
            0

            Burning Issue

            “Who are you to tell me where to go?”

            jim softy the dimwit is the new prophet of Sinhala/Buddhism (peace be upon him)

            He predicts, preaches and curses.

            You ought to be bit careful.

      • 0
        2

        BI

        “Recognising the Tamil areas constitutionally is well over due and a democratic necessity. You need to come to terms with this basic fact. It will do for your wellbeing and reach nirvana!”

        We are prepared to recognise Tamil (Tamil speaking people) areas provided you recognise the rest of the island as Sinhala areas. You must get rid of this desire to live among the Sinhalese. This is a serious problem to us.

        Soma

        • 2
          0

          soma,

          Of course we Tamils know as to where the Sinhala speaking areas are; it is pretty obvious and it is damn incongruous of you to highlight this after many decades of your hegemony!

          “You must get rid of this desire to live among the Sinhalese. This is a serious problem to us.”

          This is my friend is a personal choice being dictated to by economy! If you do not comprehend this basic fact, you are completely consumed by your inherent chronic insecurity. You need to jettison your superiority complex and recognise the democratic progress by devolving power as per the international agreement that GOSL concurred with. Who knows, after a political settlement and with burgeoning economic developments within N&E, more and more Sinhala speaking people will take advantage and reside within N&E. We Tamils will welcome that possibility with open arms!

        • 3
          0

          somaasss

          “We are prepared to recognise Tamil (Tamil speaking people) areas provided you recognise the rest of the island as Sinhala areas.”

          Trust me I am on your side.

          You will have a Sinhala/Buddhists ghetto and rest of us will have Sri Lanka proper.

  • 1
    0

    Mainstream media have lost their credibility completely; so are certain Websites. Most alarming has been the loss of viewers and readers to social media which are becoming more and more popular, easy to access, and widespread.
    A good case in point is the US media’s extensive news coverage of the ‘lost’ presidential election. People heavily suspected and did not believe what mainstream media said, wrote, and showed; they voted against Hilary Clinton who, probably for the first time in her life, learnt that media were not always correct. She was media’s ‘sure’ candidate!
    Today, people know that everything including ‘news’ as a product can be concocted/doctored/diluted/mixed,and manipulated: this is the saddest story of our time.
    Look at what Vishwamithra says: ““… it is pertinent to mention that neither any UNP Cabinet Minister nor any UNP MP has been seen as criticizing the SLFP, it was always the SLFP members (outside the Joint Opposition MPs) who have been seen as lacking in discipline.”
    Are sure Mr. Vishwamitra?

  • 2
    0

    A good write-up.

    A well functioning democracy is a consultative process; it’s never going to look clean and clinical. If you want something that looks clean and clinical then go for a dictatorship.

    In all its ham-fisted foolishness, a good consultative process – uncharacteristically open for SL – is going on in SL right now. That, my fellow countrymen is democracy!

    This is how a democracy functions, warts and all. Perhaps, not many Lankans have seen one before!

    People who have rarely tasted freedom, subconsciously, always look for jackboot to polish.

  • 1
    3

    To Simonhurris who comments:
    “Even Shangri La hotel where VIPS ministers play golf with their foreign returned siblings were projects completed by MR regime but only thing these fools did was to change opening stones and put their names on it. Every project they are opening as of now is a project started and almost completed by MR’s corrupt brothers.”
    I don’t agree with “… the only thing these fools did was to change opening stones and put their names on it”.
    These ‘fools’ have done a lot more; have you spoken to any locals in SL?
    1. Central Bank Bond scam (11.6 billion rupees)
    2. Selling Hambantota to China
    3. Rigging the EPF by 2 billion rupees.
    4. Hunting political opponents through F…..CID.
    5. Lack of cohesive policy for national development.
    6. Selling IT jobs to India thro’ ETCA (when the government has miserably failed to resolve the illegal intrusion of Indian fisherfolks to the northern sea).
    If you ask they would unanimously say: we should and would not give even an inch of our motherland to India or China since “we do not have the wherewithal, to exert economic, political or military force to evict an undesirable occupant from our soil” (quoted).

  • 0
    1

    Here is the man who got embarrassed by his bragging and big talk about HOAXWAGEN.
    Watch this bragging.
    Same with a lot of things.
    Now the poor guy had to table a bill for his FM on gay rights and his own UNP colleagues insulted him. I am for gay rights but I live in the tolerant west, not in Sri Lanka. I feel sorry for him to be made an arse with the homosexual bill that no doubt was pushed by EU and USA and FM.

    Do not delete this. This is the man bragging about bringing Hoaxwagen.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGHglvA3ric

  • 1
    1

    Look like most of paid NGO’s are still working aggressively and put comments as they done during last election. Hope real srilankans may not get into these traps and thinking correct way to select their leaders to bring forward their country. Unfortunately some got into these traps and believe these untruth which may be deciding factors for any close elections.

  • 1
    1

    What language policy are we talking about here? What language did the Sri Lankans speak before the British ( or the Europeans) arrived? I believe they all spoke Sinhala.

  • 0
    2

    I think Ranil wickramsinghe has done enough for the last two years. He should step down or quit politics..

    • 1
      0

      If RW is to step down, we have no any comparable to replace him with.

      We never want WADAKAYA or his brother to return. No in this life.

      Then we have to rely on other tactics to keep them away our sights.

      I have nodoubt, at the end of current terms, Rajapakshe will be caught.
      Then we will all be able to breath in peace. Not for anything but for the muliple crimes done him as the leader of this country.

  • 1
    0

    Wonderful Aerial Scenes From National Geographic Latest Documentary “Wild Srilanka”

    Watch this Documentary and you will understand why a Foreigner said this so Long Ago!

    “….Where every Prospect Pleases; and Only Man is Vile”

  • 0
    2

    What the article indicate is that Vishvamitra has seen the writings on the wall for M+RW combo. He can’t publicly declare it since he was praising this combo so much. He is really devastated about it but slowly resigning to the inevitable. He is grudgingly accepting that MR has been able to retain his popularity and therefore still able to influence SL politics while remaining a genuine alternative.

    He seems to have conveniently forgotten about 2010 mathematics too.

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