10 December, 2019

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Imminent General Elections – Ranil Must Be Thrown Out From UNP

By Amrit Muttukumaru

Amrit Muttukumaru

First things first. Congratulations and best wishes to the just elected President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in the expectation that he will govern our country in the manner he has promised in the run-up to the election and reiterated in his address to the nation after taking office. This include (i) democratic governance (ii) respecting the pluralism and diversity of our people (iii) zero tolerance of corruption (iv) meritocracy. 

Although it is axiomatic that General Elections are crucial for the democratic governance of any country, it has special meaning for Sri Lanka at the current juncture when the country is sharply polarized as never before as witnessed from the results of the hard fought presidential election. This does not portend well for the country. It is in this context in particular and the democratic governance of the country in general that the general elections due imminently is crucial. It is a matter of virtual life or death for the country that the majority of parliamentarians belong to parties different from the party to which the president belongs. This is to ensure the check and balance to presidential authority even though it has been somewhat diluted by the controversial 19th Amendment. Even the proposed constitutional reforms need a strong parliamentary opposition to offset it being monopolized by the party to which the executive president belongs.

Towards this end it is a sine qua non that the UNP must be up and running to present STRONG competition to the party to which President Gotabaya belongs – Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) of which the leader is his elder brother – former president Mahinda Rajapaksa.

PM Wickremesinghe

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has CLUNG on as UNP leader for the better part of 25 years virtually by force by the brute power given to the leader by the UNP constitution. Under him the UNP has lost a record number of nation-wide elections and also probably responsible for the party losing thousands of exasperated party faithful. He is still HELL- BENT on remaining as UNP leader. It is a no-brainer that Wickremesinghe who was COMPELLED albeit reluctantly at the last minute to propose Deputy UNP Leader Sajith Premadasa as presidential candidate must bear significant responsibility for Premadasa’s defeat. For several reasons it is widely perceived that Wickremesinghe’s ‘stock’ in the country and among a vast majority of the UNP faithful is at an all time low.

Reasons include:

i) Reneging on the promise of good governance for which PM Wickremesinghe is widely perceived to be mainly responsible. The egregious Treasury Bond Scam epitomizes the worst excesses of the yahapalana government’s alleged corruption and abuse of power.

(ii) Not holding those concerned under the Rajapaksa presidency accountable after alleging in the run-up to the 2015 national elections of terrible corruption, violence and abuse of power.

(iii) Perception that the Yahapalana government ALLOWED the Easter Sunday carnage to take place by ignoring several intelligence warnings due to gross incompetence.

(iv) Perception that Wickremesinghe would be more comfortable under a Gotabaya Rajapaksa presidency rather than one of Sajith Premadasa. This perception is supported by media reports (not denied) that Wickremesinghe who does not have even a ‘snowball’s chance in hell’ to defeat Rajapaksa was seriously considering being the UNP’s Presidential candidate.

(v) Hanging on as UNP leader for the better part of 25 years virtually by force by the brute power given to the leader by the UNP constitution.

(vi) Losing a record number of nation-wide elections and also probably losing thousands of exasperated party faithful.

It must nevertheless be stated that Premadasa himself – UNP deputy leader and senior minister was virtually a silent spectator in the face of yahapalana shenanigans these past four and a half years.

Conclusion

The MINDSET of PM Wickremesinghe, who is REFUSING to resign from being UNP leader whilst professing respect for democratic principles and the practice followed in mature democracies, could be gauged from the following:

1) While neither he nor UNP General-Secretary Akila Viraj Kariyawasam were present at the Elections Secretariat when the results were being officially announced, he thought it fit to be present at the swearing in of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in Anuradhapura. While it is conceded that his presence in Anuradhapura was courteous and appropriate, should it not be viewed in the WIDER CONTEXT of his absence at the Elections Secretariat in his capacity as UNP leader? It was indeed sad to see on TV Sajith Premadasa being IGNORED by his party leader and party General-Secretary.

2) While several persons in the UNP such as Kabir Hashim and Mangala Samaraweera have promptly resigned from Cabinet portfolios with immediate effect, Wickremesinghe continues to STAY PUT as UNP leader and PM.   Kabir Hashim has also resigned with immediate effect as UNP Chairman. 

Democracy and good governance DEMANDS that the UNP should present itself as a STRONG party to face the imminent General Elections under the leadership of Sajith Premadasa. If the UNP goes as a divided party with Wickremesinghe as leader, it will be a TRAGEDY for the country. Forming a new party similar to the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) or the Democratic United National Front (DUNF) of Lalith Athulathmudali and Gamini Dissanayake may not be viable in the context of the imminent General Elections.

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Latest comments

  • 21
    1

    Ranil Please look at the comments of the public ,may be strong UNP supporters, You need to respect the majority view if you are a guardian of democracy. First practice it in your own party , then let us look for others to practice it . Your time is over You are over 70 , now senile, loosing guile, and leadership qualities and has not been effective and result oriented especially regarding what you promised regarding corruption of the people of former regime, hence you have failed totally so give it up gracefully or go to the Political Dustbin as one of the most ineffective leaders. I supported the UNP for over 50 years and I still support the policies of the Party but certainly not your action at this moment, give it up and be one to guide the young leaders to the correct path, then you will be respected by us and even the world leaders

    • 11
      3

      Amrit,

      Yes. First things first. Everybody should join the satyagraha. This should mushroom. Ranil is like a leach. He will suck the blood out of the UNP, just like Sirisena did to the SLFP. Are Ranil’s graha aligned properly?

      A young UNP member had begun a continuous Satyagraha in front of party headquarters Sirikotha calling for the appointment of former Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa as the party’s new leader.

      N. D. I. C Sanjeewa, who claimed to have been a member of the UNP ever since he had the opportunity of exercising his franchise, told journalists he had begun a continuous Satyagraha in front of Sirikotha until Mr. Premadasa is appointed as the leader of the party.

      There was a placard beside him with the wording “Ranil Mathi Thumeni Sajith Mahathawa Nayaka lessa Path karanna. ( Mr. Ranil please give over the party leadership to Mr. Premadasa).

      “I have been a long-standing member of the UNP and I humbly request the current party leader to resign from the post of party leader and appoint Mr. Premadasa as the new leader,” he told the press.

      There were also placards saying Kumanthrana karyangen Pakshaya bera ganimu (let’s save UNP from conspirators). However, Sanjeewa said he was not aware as to who hung those placards

    • 0
      0

      For once I agree with Amrit on the title alone.

      Ranil has been the single-most great obstruction to the progress of the UNP or the country itself, for, at a time when the country needed direction (given splendidly by Gota by the way- whether one agrees with his vision or not) Ranil was found wanting.

      Those who equate the spate of demonstrations which inconvenienced the public no end as the freedom of expression, need to note that in highly developed democracies the Rule of the Law applies above all and nothing would be allowed which inconveniences the public.

      For a so called well read, educated man, Ranil was a great disappointment.

  • 14
    8

    For once Amrit has written something I can agree with him

  • 9
    8

    Amrit

    First things first. Congratulations and best wishes to the just elected President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in the expectation that he will govern our country in the manner he has promised in the run-up to the election and reiterated in his address to the nation after taking office.

    *** It looks like you have gone mad wishing a CRIMINAL. No civilized country has wished him. Of the Countries who conveyed a message did so for different reasons, INDIA to summon him for talks. Fathima Sena and Latha ( Mankeshkar) think that it was for High level talks. Nor darlings it is going to be a talk between Master and Subject. Jeyshankar brought 5 year old “laddu” and forced it down Gothas throat and he is going to Delhi for treatment for food poisoning. Singapore to find out if Gotha might need further treatments if not there will be a loss of revenue for Singapore Hospitals. Putin after 10 days to see how Gotha is keeping.
    I have read articles saying Sri Lanka is being wooed by India , China and USA What a Laugh. Sri Lanka is a Ugly Duckling and who would want to her smelly Pooh. The only thing that invites outsiders is that she is exposed with everything visible . From Trico Harbour to ,Hunan Rights Violation and big ” Pichai Pathiram”
    To cap the whole thing papers are putting out stories that Gotha is going with High Level 7 strong party. What a laugh . What are they going to talk about other than take notes of what Mr.Modi is going to dictate.
    1) No Cheenavedi even though Pongal is approaching.
    2) No Leases to Cheenavedi
    3) No Chinese Submarines
    4) Solution to the Ethnic issues which has caused terrible Carnage.
    5) Gotha you are going for an Oral Examination so prepare the topics before hand because I know you are a Dumb and that is why he had to turn to Mahintha the half qualified Lawyer for answers.

  • 1
    18

    Muttukumarus are not too good people make such a nasty comment about good Ranil

    • 6
      1

      Shobha Das,

      Ranil belongs in s monastery, not politics. He, along with Sirisena, paved the way for the Rajapaksa Mafia and the Rajapaksa Waffen SS.

  • 8
    2

    Now Ranil W says: “We must learn from the latest election and correct ourselves to face the future”. He faced “19” (or more) Defeats at elections and count more than “FORTY” (40) years in “Politics” at Parliamentary level. Has he LEARNED anything? If he DID, this country would not have been in shambles as at date. Only we saw his “ARROGANCE” and personal quality of “CRAFTINESS” in management of Governing affairs and party politics. It is high time to “DROP’ him for good. He is NO LEADER for any Political Party or the country. Simple as that.

  • 5
    3

    Why can’t Ranil leave the country and settle down elsewhere without taking part in politics. He and MY3 ruined the country since 2015 and they made GR to have a resounding victory. Good bye Ranil for the sake of mother Lanka.

  • 2
    7

    He hasn’t destroyed UNP yet. Please let him be there another term so the UNP is completely gone.

  • 3
    8

    Yes, Ranil must go. But Anton, you supported Gota. You have no right to tell us in the UNP. We will send Ranil home. You keep out

  • 4
    2

    The late R.Premadasa’s dictatorial method was instrumental for the creation of the DUNF. DUNF rose up immediately but unfortunately, both Lalith Athulatmudali & Gamini Dissanayake were assassinated. But here is a case where Sajith Premadasa is childing and dancing to the tune of some suspected members who joined Ranil for personal gains. Either Sajith should have allowed room for Ranil or Karu Jayasuriya to contest the President. Since everything is over now, the UNP should take steps to kick out Sajith and revamp the UNP. Now some of the appointments made by Gota appears to be contravening the provisions of the Constitution. The other culprit was Maithripala who was engaged in sabotaging instead of demonstrating good governance. Maithripala was leaning towards Chine whereas Ranil was favouring India in many respects. Maithripala was even leaning towards Mahinda and was engaged in conspiracy to create problems for Ranil. The UNP should expose all these gimmicks to the public. Moreover, the CWC led by Thondaman & Muralitharan played another havoc for their personal gains for which the hill country Tamils were misled. Sajith will destroy the UNP because of his immaturity.

  • 5
    7

    Amrit Muttukumaru
    31 Comments
    Imminent General Elections – Ranil Must Be Thrown Out From UNP

    President Gotabaya Rajapaksa promised in the run-up to the election and in his address to the nation after taking office pontificated (i) democratic governance (ii) respecting the pluralism and diversity of our people (iii) zero tolerance of corruption (iv) meritocracy.
    Amrit Muttukumaru has swallowed these hook line and sinker!
    Meritocracy: The Defence Secretary appointee Rtd. Maj Gen Kamal Gunaratne could not handle administering the Royal Institute and when it got rough, resigned.
    In full public view Kamal beat the hell out of a school kid for quarrelling with his son.
    Zero tolerance of corruption: Really…..really!

  • 9
    2

    If the UNP needs to win an election Ranil has to be put in a septic tank. He is the cause of the down fall of the UNP

  • 3
    9

    As was seen elsewhere in the world lately, in Sri Lanka too the battle was between two approaches to government: One is where a strong man running the show from a nationalistic vehicle (very popular at the moment). Other is the traditional democratic approach. In Sri Lanka, SLPP and UNP were doing reasonable jobs representing these two ends. In this election in Sri Lanka for a number of key reasons, the strong man option was going to win no matter how good a man the champion of democracy was going to be. On top of that, for his own disadvantage, Sajith Premadasa had one leg on one end and the other on the other. He fell through in between with a big thud.

    Ranil may or may not be following democracy in his party. But I don’t think that matters much. He is the biggest democrat country has when it comes to the business of government. But everything has an expiry date. He needs to go because he is old (and he is not capable of bonding with partners voters or his MPs) – and not because he was doing a bad job steadfastly representing a set of values especially in a complex society like Sri Lanka.

    The idea of ditching Ranil to bring in Sajith is stupid. What needs to happen is that everybody who believes in democratic tradition as the way forward for Sri Lanka, should get together and think through. I dont think there is anybody who can do that thinking better than Ranil. I think if he is given a free hand, he will rule that it should not be him.

  • 1
    2

    Do you think if Yala /Pad Sajith comes as a Leader of the Party, election can be win. No………….. Under the Leadership of Hon. Ranil Wickremasinghe only the Colombo people voted to Yala/Pad Sajith. That is the true story.

  • 3
    0

    once dharshana h. told in his SLV LOG ranil please go. ranil should leave politics and rest in peace

  • 5
    0

    Ranil is dictator of UNP for life. He will ensure SLFP/SLPP wins at least the next 2 or 3 elections. Ranil has helped to create the Rajapakse DYNASTY by offering terrorists Eelam on a platter in 2005. First Rajapakse became President after CBK dissolved the Parliament. Second Rajapakse after Ranil gave land to Muslim ministers in exchange for votes. If Ranil is around after 10-15 years, he can help Namal bugger win the next round. Ranil is the king of losers. If Uncle JR was around, he would give Ranil a quick boot out of politics.

  • 1
    0

    I don’t know if people remember the interview as soon as the Megalomaniac Mahinda Rajapaksa was defeated, and on the first interview in English Ranil claimed that Vickneswaran is a lier and he will not talk to him. I supported TNA on that election and consequently supported Ranil Vickramasinge along with Maithripala Srisena. How wrong was I on both counts? Ranil and the TNA can never be trusted and Ranil and the Trio of TNA “Sampanthan, Sumanthiran and Senathirajah should be banished from the Sri Lankan Politics.

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