By Godwin Constantine –
We are at the brink of a major mass protest. Even the US envoy had summoned a press conference at her residence to convey her belief “it is inaccurate that some countries await change of government to offer aid or assistance” todays new paper reads. This is simply her belief, or a statement released due to the fear that a centre-left party may get the chance to form the new government. The US is clear in their views, nothing matters, who ever can be their puppet is the highly democratic and preferable candidate what ever happens to the people. We have enough evidence all over the world to illustrate this policy. However, the evidence available thus far is contrary to the belief of the US envoys.
The ‘9th revolutions’ was initiated by the Mahinda Rajapakse supporters attacking the GotaGoGama which ultimately resulted in the resignation of MR from the prime minister’s post. Then came June 9th which say stepping down of Basil Rajapakse , and the 9th of July is expected to lead to the ultimate change. As things appear this is going to be a well organized well orchestrated through large groups. Let’s hope that sanity will prevail and the ‘selected’ Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will not try to just brush it off in his usual (initial) way. This is possibly going to be the final stand-off between the conventional (corrupt) politics (smart politics – Ranjan Ramanayake) and the ‘aragalaya’ politics.
Who ever comes to power our situation is bound to worsen. But this situation presents us with a good opportunity to get rid of corrupt politicians and bring in a drastic change of governance within the democratic framework. This system change is not to attract foreign loans, as believed by the US envoy, it is to reboot our system and drive the future course in the correct path, this is to gain the confidence of our expatriate brethren to country’s future, this to improve the image of the country is enhance the investor confidence. If we believe that a change will bring in enough loan that will only prolong our agony and delay our recovery and lead us in to an unsustainable debt burden (if it is not already) situation.
Who ever forms the new government will have 3 main tasks. First and foremost is to convince the public not to expect miracles and to accept that we are at the rock bottom. Very soon we will have to stop getting loans and depends on our remittances, and earnings. If we do not stop importing fuel through credit lines our debt is going to be unmanageable in the near future. Improve the public transport system. It is important to have a clear policy regarding fuel allocation, health care and food distribution.
The second task will be to bring to books the public officials who are acting as agents to exploit the system. It has been increasingly brought out in the hearings of the COPE committee in the recent times, some unbelievable level of corruption in the public sector in the country. The public sector must be pruned to a manageable size. All forms of political employments should be stopped.
The third formidable task will be to ensure to prevent corrupt politicians re-entering parliament. In a democratic set up it is mainly in the hands of the general public to consciously work towards creating a new political culture. During the past 70 years or so we have learned to find an “enemy within” to attack to achieve narrow political gains. This is an inherent weakness of the “democratic system” we have happily endorsed without endorsing the spirit of it.
Everyone will have to make sacrifices; we are not going to be able to enjoy luxuries of life for quite a long time. We can only wish that some thing good will come out of what we are going through. However, comes to power will have to enter into an agreement with the citizens about necessities and what can be offered and what cannot be offered. A fuel ship is coming tomorrow and a ship is in the port and if you have a protest on the 9th the ship that is to arrive on the 10th will not come –sort of baby talks are enough.
We need to ensure corruption free politics; corruption free public sector and great attitude change among the masses to create a just society.