20 January, 2019

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If The New Regime Fails In Upholding Democratic Good Governance, Society Will Bark Loud & Bite

By Chandra Jayaratne

Chandra Jayaratne

Let the leaders of the new regime, clearly realize that the civil society and citizen voters are watching; with eyes open, ears attentive and minds alert and the body ready to spring in to mindful strategic action, to establish whether the much hard fought and regained democratic good governance framework, is going to be violated in the slightest by your new team in governance.

It is the fervent hope of the civil society and citizen voters, who came forward for the second time since 2015, that they will not be let down by the arrogance of power, egoistic actions, kleptocracy and cronyism and unacceptable/undemocratic political inaction of the new regime.  

The above hope is despite, Grusha Andrews in the Colombo Telegraph article sounding alarm bells and stating This victory will be your victory till tomorrow. Tomorrow the UNP will claim this to be their victory alone. They will build their new kleptocracy with wheeler dealers like Ravi Karunanayake, Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, Wasantha Senanayake and Rajitha Senaratne to enthrone them, justifying themselves through the court verdict. Even if a new government will be formed under the UNP in due course, the Rajapaksas will never be brought to rule. Thajudeen will be buried 12 feet under along with the tears of his parents who die a thousand deaths. Tomorrow, the UNP will claim the court verdict. The people will be soon removed from the mega hall of the Temple Trees that will be cleaned to five star standards. If Chathura Senaratne wishes to marry there again there will be no one to stop him. Because tomorrow, the most corrupt Rajitha Senaratne will be most powerful .The supporters of the UNP and the citizens who protected the UNP for good 50 days will be forgotten. Because in the anatomy of the UNP runs the despotic, unruly, corrupt blood. Perhaps till their mega rally at the Galle Face finishes on the 17th, the UNP might treat us all humans. But never, ever will the UNP deliver us from political suppression.”

If the above predictions or even lesser damaging acts of bad governance are seen, beware, as the civil society and citizen voters, will bark out loud instantaneously, name and shame and bite where it hurts most; and certainly chase such actors out of politics for good at the next elections.

So here are Seven Golden Rules for the immediate attention of the new regime and especially its leaders:

a) No persons appointed as Ministers, Deputy Ministers, State Ministers and Secretaries of Ministries and Heads of Departments, State Owned Enterprises and Other Key Positions in Public Commissions, Public Institutions and Regulatory Authorities, must be even associated or suspected to be associated with any acts of Undemocratic Bad Governance, Corruption, Breakdown in Law and Order and Nepotism ( especially those associated or purported to be linked to the Bond Scam, Large Value State Infrastructure Projects ( including Roads, Highways, Rail, Port, and Power & Energy), Large Value Supply Contracts ( including rice, coal and petroleum) and in the sale and long lease of state infrastructure. In addition, all politicians, political appointees, law enforcement officer leaders and others who placed hurdles in  the Effective conduct of Investigations and Unbiased & Just  Law Enforcement and Judicial actions must be eased out of their present accountabilities;

b) The Cabinet and Ministry Secretaries must comprise of persons with proven capability , accountability and unblemished track record of high leadership achievement, having acceptable public relations with voters. At least 75% of them must be below 65 years of age and capable of assuring a line of succession in to the future;

c) The Leadership in Governance must Practice at all times, Transparent Good Governance upholding Democracy, the Rule of Law, Human Rights, Freedoms and following Liberal Democratic Values, and ensure consensual decision making, where equity and rights of all citizens are preserved with appropriate safety nets for all marginalized communities; Specifically target and facilitate the priority attention in meeting the needs and expectations of all marginalized communities, conflict affected persons, and poor and youth and elderly in finding livelihood opportunities to push them out of poverty.

d) All high profile cases filed and all high profile cases under investigation relating to the previous regime and all reported violations under the present regime, including  the bond scam and other cases of corruption, must be brought before the justice, retaining private lawyers where necessary; Complete all law reforms essential to gain an upgrade from FATF classification as a high risk jurisdiction for money laundering; and  Uphold human rights commitments and bring before the justice all offenders who have crimes committed violating the rights of minorities and marginalized  persons:.

e) All in governance leadership commit that all national resource spends/allocations will be within the principles of Austerity, Cost effectiveness and all investments limited to those assuring timely positive cash flow returns. Here all tamashas, non value adding celebrations, and politically motivated events must cease: use of unnecessary ego boosting security contingents, non value adding local and international travel with politicians being accompanied by personal and network contingents on overseas tours must cease; No vehicles for use of Ministers and officials should be imported, purchase or leased for 2 years. All Supplementary estimates must be specifically be reviewed by the House Finance Committee and adopted by Parliament and be subject to post audit.

f) All professional steps be taken with the best advice of the Monetary Board to effectively risk manage and implement the critical external debt  management programme in the face of the crisis facing the nation at present; Here the public must be made aware of the risks and needs for austerity and commitment of all to make essential short term sacrifices. Arrange for the Central Bank to develop procedures to annually compute and place before Parliament the Fiscal Gap Computations.

g) Adhere to Open Government Commitments and strengthen the independence and capabilities of Independent Commissions, Public Institutions and Regulatory Authorities and take steps to Improve Productivity, Quality of Public Services and Public Utilities: Require All Large Value Public Investments and All Revenue spends above set limits  to be subjected to Parliamentary Finance Committee Approval and Post Audit Reviews.

A Report Card on the delivery of above commitments must be placed before Parliament on a quarterly basis by the Prime Minister.

This is the last chance the new regime will have to prove their commitments made before Reverend Sobhitha. So do not fail him, do not fail the civil society and citizen voters!

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Latest comments

  • 11
    0

    Tall order!
    Basically the same old stale wine in a new bottle.

    • 5
      0

      The cabinet appointments would underline the planned way forward.

      If Ravi is given a cabinet portfolio that is the end of Ranil and UNP.

      Lets see whether Ranil can do the right thing and whether he has the will to do the right thing.

      Also lets watch his key appointments to institutions such as BoC, PB, NSB, Sri Lankan, CEB, SLPA, SLIC and CPC. How many brothers and sisters of politicians would be appointed??

  • 14
    0

    Dear Chandra Jayaratne,
    It is a very good guidance for a good governance but the practicality is difficult considering the characteristics of our politicians. For example, most of them are free to move from here to there and there to here if they don’t get ministerial posts.Most of them have associated with bad governance. Unless we change the law that moving parties without the mandate of the people is legally a crime, you cannot stop moving. Is it possible to put legal restrictions for such violations through constitution?

  • 0
    0

    [Edited out] writing in capital letters are discouraged -CT

  • 1
    0

    MPs crossing the floor to the opposite side of the house of parliament should be made illegal and if any one does so cease to be a member. This was the only good thing in JR’s 1978 consititution but subsequently then CJ Sarath N de silva who gave a ruling against that as many of his appalling judgements detrimental to the democracy and to the country. President himself quoted price for a MP to cross over was Rs 500 million and they were not elected to amass such personal wealth but to serve the electorate. it is imperative this point is included in the new constitution presumably being drafted, to prevent future horse trading.

  • 0
    0

    Dear Sir,
    I thank you for this article that has outlined what the hearts of many upright Sri Lanka say. More strength to your resplendent mind. Your views are truly thought worthy. And action worthy.
    Thank you.
    Yours faithfully
    Grusha Andrews

  • 4
    0

    Ranil can never do the right thing.
    Now its proved and confirmed that he is dependant on others to do the job for him as he is incapable.
    Ranil just wants others to shout for him.

    The impression we had on Ranil over the years has turned out to be an illusion. He can not perform but very good at galavanting on state expense making speeches
    Only thing he can do is talk and say we are going to do this and that and end up like the that Volkswagen factory tale.
    Ranil is pathetic. he is living off the state coffers just bidding his time and giving into and listening to Western interest. He does not care neither country nor the people.

    Take my word, Ravi.K will run the show and Ranil will just be an also ran.

  • 0
    0

    Chandra, Did you send a similar letter to MR when he was sworn in ?

  • 1
    0

    Yes Chandra Jayaratne, the silver-lining of the 26 October sack and the subsequent ‘happenings’ has given us, in a forced state of denial, a jolt. But one swallow does not make a summer.
    .
    We agree with your quote off Grusha Andrews, in CT, regarding the ilk of Ravi Karunanayake, Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, Wasantha Senanayake, Rajitha Senaratne and others.
    .
    Sorry Chandra. your ask (a) is near impossible to meet. From the leaks of PCoI on SriLankan Airlines, one has to conclude that it will not be possible to assemble a team of ten to lead SriLankan .

  • 0
    2

    Ha ha ha ha….. Are you kidding, Chandra?
    You couldn’t even make Ranil stop handing over house building contracts in North and East to China and India, which is a simple case. Do you think you can make him follow your rules?

  • 1
    0

    What are you talking. You are Chartered Accountant and possibly an influencial member. You could answer Amrit has asked several times what did you and your institute did the the ROGUE chartered accounting practice who was charged of criminal miscondict by Supreme court. Fix it first before advising others. Do you have no shame

  • 1
    0

    Good article, Mr Chandra Jayaratne,
    .
    But also, I found out something about you. I asked a school-mate because there were two of your earlier articles which had indicated to me that you’re a wonderful man.
    .
    Shall say more tomorrow.

  • 0
    0

    Chandra Jayarathne: Democracy and BGood governence are both MCC terminology.

  • 0
    0

    This is mainly about Finance.

    Political Process-Election process must be strengthened. Independent Election Commission seems to have not achieved anything on that. Primary must be compulsory to all parties. No one can be appointed as nominated MP if he /she has lost primary. It is many times suggested that there must be a minimum qualification for candidates. Better procedure must be there to stop Biriyani – Arrack elections.

    Legal Process:
    Law and Order ministry should not go by automatic allocation like to PM or EP. The Minister’s background must be checked and he/she be elected by parliament and verified by SC and confirmed by CC. Supreme Court justices getting appointed with proper method is not enough. Bad ones should not start at lower level and come to SC level. Though I don’t believe Nagananda, their tape is good. The pending 800,000 number cases should be attended, without any more bribes taking.

    Health Care:

    Fixing Rajitha is not enough. Medical and health care should be fixed. New King openly accepted in 2015 that the Health ministry is the worst one in the country. Health care workers must go to arbitration. No labor union action.

    Major economic developments like above one billion US dollar must be put to referendum, irrelevant of their profitability. As China owns lot of loans and targeting more lands, any land sale for foreign governments must be with referendum. Otherwise China will soon buy the whole country for its loans by bribing and bulling the officials.

  • 0
    0

    Chandra Jayaratne,

    In your laundry list of 7 items from a to g, Ranil gets an F on all 7. So, how is he going to change anything? The first rule he will break is by appointing corrupt members as Ministers. Then, he will find a way to violate the constitution by appointing more than 30 Ministers. No foreign missions will raise their voice or give their 2 cents because its their man violating the constitution.

    I sure hope the people of Colombo will come to their senses and vote Ranil out of Parliament next time. That may be the only way to save the UNP

  • 1
    0

    Dear Chandra

    Thank you for ‘some’ of the check list/reminders/priority listing for the citizens..who will do the KPI’s?

    We the public never ever recollect an instance we had a progress report except during the final phase of the war.

    We know how to do that but I think we choose not to do so?

    Without finger pointing at anyone we have a situation we elect ‘all’ of them from President/PM/MP’s/LG all the way down to Municipality level but is like ‘asking a cat to look after the milk pot’??

    we the people lost control……….the word democracy itself now the derogative word.

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