17 November, 2018

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Next President Of Sri Lanka

By P. Bertie Ranaweerage

Bertie Ranaweerage

Bertie Ranaweerage

After the elections in the Southern and Western Provinces in March, it is believed that the government is going to dissolve the Uva Provincial Council and hold elections there before the end of 2014. There is no doubt the President wants to test the water. If the government manages to win all the elections in the Western, Southern and Uva provinces comfortably, we can expect the Presidential election within the first 3 months of 2015 and the Parliamentary elections soon after.

The billion dollar question for the Opposition and other ant-government forces is who can pose a serious challenge or defeat the incumbent President.

If one wants to defeat the present President at the next election she or he has to study how and why he was able to win people before and after he was elected to the Office of President.

An old acquaintance of mine, who was close to Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa when he was the MP for Beliatta electorate, said to me that Mahinda used to invite everybody who visited him at his Beliatta home for a meal, breakfast, lunch or dinner.

It is public knowledge that after he became the President he served food to more than one hundred thousand people who attended Temple Trees for official and unofficial matters .

Just before the last Presidential election he held hundreds of meeting at Temple trees and nobody was sent home in hunger. It is true that he had to meet people at Temple Trees as the LTTE was waiting in the street to assassinate him.

He served food to people because he knew that the path to one’s heart lies through stomach.

I do not remember any other President or Prime Minister who served food to people at his official residence.

I also can remember that he participated in a lot of agitations organized by the UPFA trade unions. He managed to win the hearts of  anti-UNP trade unionists and members of trade unions by participating in their protest campaigns.

That is how he won hearts of lots of people.

After the defeat of the LTTE he became more popular among the Sinhalese but he became less popular among the Tamils. The provincial Council elections in the North proved it beyond any doubt.

After the 18th amendment and the impeachment of CJ one has to admit that he has lost popularity among a sizable section of the middle class and intelligentsia.

Unbearable cost of living has hurt 90% of the population and that has made him less popular among all sections of the masses though some may not agree with me.

The voters are now aware that a lot of government politicians are earning millions upon millions through legal and illegal means. Heroin container is only one example that shows how politicians earn millions or billions.

Mr. Mangala Samaraweera himself reminded us that  many MPs are engaged in heroin business. He did not say that only the government MPs are in that lucrative business.

Attacks on churches, mosques and Kovils by the BBS, Sihala Rawya and Rawana Balaya have made the President and his government less popular among the Muslims, Hindus and a section of Christians.

People are largely fed up with the government but if there is no formidable candidate acceptable to them from the Opposition at the next Presidential election many Sinhalese probably will cast  their votes for Mahinda again mo matter how much they are disgusted with the government.

Then who is there to be nominated as the common candidate of the Opposition at the next presidential election?

Is Ranil the alternative?

Ranil himself knows that he is not popular, not even in his party itself though he is considered a Mr. Clean. Many will agree with me when I say that he is not a charismatic leader. He simply does not know how to win people.

There is no doubt that Mr. Ranil Wicremesinghe will lose in case he contests at the next Presidential election. Thank God and gods he knows it and I am sure that he will not contest.

The what about Karu?

Karu is a person unknown to many voters. He is not a charismatic leader and he is only another D.B. Wijethunga. One has to be good orator, a fearless, steadfast, principled  leader if he /she wants to attract people and win elections. Karu is a far cry in that respect

Then another  leader of the UNP who is looking forward to be the President of the country is Sajith. Will he be able to win?

My answer is loud ‘NO”. Why? He will simply not get nomination from the UNP. Even if he contests he will end up in the third place in the race. Nobody knows his stand on many burning issues that hurt Sri Lankans.

Then do you think Sarath Fonseka is the next best?

My belief is he is worse than Ranil. He knows how to lose votes by using vituperative language to attack his enemies. One cannot garner votes if he/she is not people friendly. Many are scared of electing a military man as the Head of the country simply because democracy is anathema for military people. Mahinda or Ranil is much better than a military man as the President of the country.

Next in line is Rev. Maduluwawe Sobhita Thero.

There is no doubt he is keen in restoring democracy, rule of law and independence of judiciary. He wants badly to abolish the Executive presidency and the constitution and usher a better constitution.

But after the attacks on churches mosques and Hindu Kovils by the pro-government supporters of the BBS, Sihala Ravaya and Rawana Balaya, the Christians Muslims and Hindus are scared of the yellow robe. As Buddhist priests have not played any significant role to help the displaced people in the North and East they have no sympathy for Buddhist clergy at all. Without the support of the Tamils , Muslims and Christians a Buddhist priest, even of the calibre of Rev. Maduluwawe Sobhita Thero, even as the common candidate of the Opposition will be an unsuccessful contestant in a race with Mahinda.

Can we present a Tamil or a Muslim as the common candidate at the next Presidential election of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka? It is nothing but a suicide mission as we are a far cry from Obama’s America.

So, from where can anti government forces find a candidate who can pose a serious challenge to His Excellency?

If the Opposition do want to defeat the incumbent President they have to find him/her from nowhere but from the  disgruntled old guards of  the governing Sri Lanka Freedom Party.

Why should the common candidate be found from among the ruling party?

If the common candidate is unable to bag several hundred thousand votes from the UPFA,  he/she stand no chance of winning at the Presidential election .

Therefore in case a popular figure from the SLFP is presented as the common candidate of the Opposition he or she will be able to get a lot of votes from the disgruntled SLFPers and it will be an unprecedented challenge to the incumbent President.

Will any of the old guards such as Messrs  D.M Jayarathne, Rathnasiri Wickramanayake or madam Chandrika  Bandaranaike Kumaratunga break ranks to challenge the President?

It  definitely depends on the level of unity, co-operation and strength of all  anti government forces from North to South and West to East.

*Bertie Ranaweerage – Former president of Ceylon Teachers’ Union

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Latest comments

  • 4
    13

    Oh dear, if any one expect Sinhala Buddhist dumps elect brainy president hahahahah…oh gay Buddha what u teach them…nothng but more shit heads….god bless tamils….
    From
    Vanni

    • 2
      2

      J.Muthu

      “nothng but more shit heads….god bless tamils….”

      How about Muthu for president. You can bet on Ben Hurling’s vote.

      • 4
        3

        A totally known Sinhala Buddhist chap comes forward and says to the people:

        I will make Mahanama’s Mahavamsa compulsory reading in every school in 24 hours. All schools must have bhikkus, a Buddha’s statue and also army in the North and East.

        Everybody has to study Sinhala language, follow Buddhism and go to the viharas to pray. Speaking Tamil will be banned just as Kurdish language was banned in Turkey at one time.

        No killing of cows, but beef can be imported and ssandals made of leather for bhikkus too.

        All Mosques, churches and Hindu temples will be demolished along the lines already taken by progressive BBS, Sinhala Ravaya and the like.

        Everybody must have a Buddhist name and a Sinhala name in front, but other names may be used as aliases.

        If the majority of the people (read Sinhala Buddhists) want to democratically determine by majority votes any other progressive ideas similar to the above I won’t hesitate to consider them seriously.

        Food will be provided free for everybody who needs, and jobs too.

        You vote for me and I will make Sri Lanka a land like no other in human history. Vote for me, believe me we will prosper like Singapore.

        The majority of the people will democratically elect this chap without any doubt.

        The we can call it appe anduwa – hell with the international community and the LTTE rump diaspora!

        • 4
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          To a large extent, the man who is running the country is the White-Van Rajapaksa, a military man, just a Colnel who abandoned our troops during the dark years of the Eelam wars.

          People of minority religions are not put off by Buddhism, especially the brand authentic & humane promoted by Ven Sobitha.

          IN THIS CRIMINAL MILITARISTIC REGIME THE BULLET IS MORE POWERFULL THAN THE BALLOT, ABANDONED BALLT BOXES FROM THE LAST ELECTION ARE YET BEING FOUND.
          NOT JUST A HELPING OF LUNCH, EVEN ELECTION RESULTS ARE BROADCASTED FROM TEMPLE-TREES !!

    • 1
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      Muthu, [Edited out]

  • 14
    1

    Episode of ‘excelency’ worship
    Must be after lunch at Temple Trees

    SL deserves to have the Jarapaksas as leaders and face the international consequences.

    Long live our looters, drug lords, racists & murderes!

    • 7
      1

      Weeratunga

      Bertie Ranaweerage writes:

      “Unbearable cost of living has hurt 90% of the population and that has made him less popular among all sections of the masses though some may not agree with me.”

      Can’t the 90% go to Temple Tree to be fed by MR at least three meals a day?

  • 1
    3

    Giving food to people who visit the homes of Rajapaksa families is not unique to present President’s family.George Rajapaksa and his mother used to do the same at their Weeraketiya home during election campaigns for the Mulkirigala seat in the 70s.That was a way of opening their home to the public at a critical time in the elections.

    I had learned that this was a practice adopted by their predecessors like D.M.Rajapaksa when he contested the larger Hambantota seat against his catholic contender. People who lived in Walasmulla area did not have access to rice at the time. They used to eat Kurakkan.When they went to work as labourers in Walavva lands in Weeraketiya etc. they were given a free rice meal at Rajapaksa home.Thus, this is a family tradition dating back to the political origins of Rajapaksas – not something that the present President picked out of air for expedience.

    • 3
      0

      It’s no body’s biz whether MR give rice of any thing else for that matter, as long as that’s his private money. Now he is having a field day with hard earned money of our tax payers. Only idiots can’t grasp this.

  • 4
    0

    The writer seems to be a fan of chandrika.He takes us through a long discourse eliminating everyone else and then just puts her name at last without really promoting her,but making sure that in our mind there will be no other candidate. don’t agree with him that sobitha thero will not give a fight to mahinda.If he does not get minority votes as the author claims so will mahinda also not get and then they are even and the outcome will be decided by the sinhalese.The sinhalese distrust anyone who can get minority votes and those who can’t will automatically get popular with them.So it will be two sinhala popular, minority unpopular candidates against each other will be a outcome that will be decided on no sinhalese not voting for a candidate because of their perceived minority support.

    However my choice will be chandrika just like the authors choice but for different reasons.She will probably lose but give a better fight than fonseka,but the most important factor will be that the SLFP will be permanently split and even if mahinda is able to carry on till 2020 which he probably will,his tenure will be a nightmare for him and very unpleasant as JR’s tenure after the 1982 referendum was.

  • 5
    0

    Why not Hirunika? She is pretty with a good figure. She doesn’t care for scruples or principles or right and wrong. She is close to Kudu Duminda. Besides, she is the adopted daughter of Mahinda. If she is made President she will find her Dad’s killer. Of course that means he will have to dump Duminda. She is good at dumping and connecting

    • 0
      0

      The slained father was made a platform to gain some popularity and attetion from all around. That was achieved and now found another platform form to launch the political career; the adopted father who waited for the time bring the lass under his fold to keep her mouth shut. Now that process has begun. The talk of the slained father will gradually fade away and, with less talking now, the little popularity gained now too will fade away; then the final act will a crash down from the adopted father’s political platform; finally making a tragic end.

  • 1
    0

    .
    I cannot wait to see Namal becoming president and Gota calling him ‘Sir’.

    :-)

  • 2
    0

    If Sri Lankans can be bought for a meal in Temple Trees, then only the God can help this country to regain democracy and good governance.

  • 1
    0

    Meals Heals all mishaps of the ruler. Nothing to worry!

  • 5
    4

    common candidate is from UNP and will be Mr Clean Hon Ranil Wickramasinghe. he will get more votes than DM,Chandrika or Rathnasiri.

  • 2
    0

    18A achieved by dubious/illegal means,therefore look forward to a new face from SLFP & opposition.

  • 0
    0

    Presidential election will be held this year. If not it will never be held during the time of the incumbent President. He is a master tactician and he knows that the majority of the people want the abolition of the Presidency. He will yield to such pressure and will become the next Executive Prime Minister and will try to form a National government and retain his power.

  • 1
    0

    Berty, yours is a perfect analysis of the current political situation.But still I feel SF can change the image.

  • 2
    2

    Chandrika, in spite of her ‘iffy’ past, is probably the best one to give the incumbent a run for his money! At least she never antagonized the ethnic and religious minorities and is intellectually far superior to the current lot and has a much better record with the international community.

    • 3
      0

      Root of all evils of today is Chandrika. The whole world know her lies and deceptions. Victor Ivan can testify this. If she contests again she will come dead last.

      • 1
        0

        Oh Jayan, softly, softly. Peter like all pumpkin eaters is still in eternal awe of his Chor Rajini. Let him dream on.Don’t deny him the pleasure.

  • 1
    1

    This is a good summary and should be seriously reflected on. Who from amongst the old guard SLFP has the charisma and eloquence to pose a real challenge to the incumbent? Not DM, not Ratnasiri… my bet is Madam Chandrika, but is she up to it? My guess is that she must be cherishing her life of retirement and wouldn’t wish to sully her reputation in this murky field of unprincipled politics. Not even for the sake of rescuing mother Lanka from this tribal form of rule and vise-like grip on organs of state and the anticipated dynastic or militaristic rule?

    My heart waits in earnest for the answer……

  • 3
    2

    MR is inviting for 100,000 people for Lunch from People’s Money, So Sinhala Modaya is slave for Bath Packet fools… Hungry Asses..

  • 1
    0

    We have two options one is Rev. Maduluwawe Sobitha Thero and the other option is CBK. OBVIOUSLY , Rev. Sobitha may not be keen on getting into fray but if persuaded by major opposition coalition, all out effort must be there by leading minority parties like TNA and SLMC back his candidature. Further he may not be interested to continue as the President but may be persuaded to do a few specific jobs such as scraping the presidential system and establishing independent commissions, which no party after winning presidential considered to be its priority or even considered of any importance.
    CBK had the opportunity to scrap but didn’t took the challenge. She would easily get a fair fraction of SLFP and left votes. She definitely be very much more acceptable to ethnic minorities as well as religious minorities including. Buddhists. Will Fonseka and JVP give her whole hearted backing, is an another thing to consider. Since CBK has no party perhaps she might like scrap the Presidential System. Hence even with this limitation she is one of the few who can make big impact at the Presidential Election. So the choice is limited only suitable background creation is important to make the joint opposition candidate if any change is needed in the present set up.

  • 1
    1

    I wonder what is this hurry to defeat the current president. If the country is in such a bad state as the anti-government crowd want to believe anyone out of Ranil, Karu or Sajith will able to defeat the president. Infact the need for a “common candidate” tells a lot about the state of the opposition.

    UNP needs to forget about elections for a while and organize itself. Such a pathetic state of affairs a party like UNP needing to go after “common candidates” and having a leader who skips 2 presidential elections in a row.

  • 3
    0

    There is no one in the UNP,SLFP, JVP or any other party who can beat MR at the next presidential election. MR has all the powers to manipulate things. The only candidate who can get almost all Sinhala Buddhist votes is Sobhitha Thero even if the Muslims and the Tamils vote against the Thera(as they are not aware of the good Thera). The big question is whether Sobhitha Thera will like this idea. He can become the president and remain as president till the constitution is changed and give the leadership to a suitable honest person.

    • 1
      0

      May the good monk Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Thero guide this country in correct path to have good governance.

  • 1
    3

    Chandrika is the only best option than all other candidates.

  • 3
    2

    MR should be back on the pedestal to take Sri Lanka to the very bottom! Then only the modayas will realise their folly!

    Sengodan. M

  • 1
    0

    what a poor list of candidates

  • 6
    1

    Ranil will have the last laugh. MR won against Ranil by the skin of his teeth-just 1 1/2 lakhs and that because LTTE boycotted. None other than Ranil can restore the country from the Rajapkase destruction. Decent man respected all over the world.Bertie let’s make Ranil win!CBK is a Chauwra Regina who did bugger-all.

    • 1
      0

      correct it as because LTTE asked to boycott and there people who were actually prepared to heed to LTTE!

  • 4
    1

    Why not Vigneswaran the illegal boat migrant for president?

    Why always a Sinhalese have to be the president.

    This is discrimination.

    Lets have a Tamilian president.

    Or that Ananthi ho. She is good.

    Good in bed.

    • 1
      0

      Why not have a Muslim for a change? How about that foul mouthed Azwer chap? He will give Dr Mervyn a good run for his equally foul mouth.

    • 0
      0

      @Fuckshitma, yeah Ananthi [Edited out]

  • 1
    1

    December 22, 2013
    K.SUNIL:
    August 2, 2010 at 7:55 pm

    master of astrology ,K.SUNIL –March 3, 201o at 4:48 am

    Who will be Victorious At the President Election of
    Sri Lanka in April 2014
    The up coming election which is going to be held in Sri Lanka on April 10, 2013 .Who is the next President in Sri Lanka. The whole world looking for this. We can see there is a big competition among the candidates give many hopes and promises to the people in Sri Lanka, the oldest theory of astrology. The result of the election cannot be predicated but in this letter, I try to give an assumption of the election the theory of Krisnamurthi methods very popular among in Asian countries as well as in European countries solar fire williaks is popular according to the solar fire williaks system. on that day the sun rises at about 6.00 clock a.m. an depending on that with an experiments the candidate who comes from Mr.Mahinda Rajapaksa candidate ascendent is Aries.2014: Year of elections in Sri Lanka and elsewhere, but no major changes in sight
    Nomination and first election campaign date also effect to the win of the each candidate ascendent. The election date Mr.Mahinda Rajapaksa Planet Sun the luckey number 05 at their candidate Aries assessments and Sun more power ful The election day according to the elevation of Latitude and Magnitude sign the well get more vote and be ask the Mr.Mahinda Rajapaksa next President in Sri Lanka elected SureWish you wall the best. 2014–2015–2016 –2017 Sri lanka President In Mr.Mahinda Rajapaksa
    K. Sunil Opathella— ( WORLD,s NO.1 ASTROLOGER ——-. K. SUNIL
    OPTHELLE–SRI -LANKA -+94 332278121(Nadishanthi -numerology , vastu
    -astrology Service) )postel adress
    Master of Astrologer –
    –K.sunil -Galboda—Waturugama.
    (Google, World no1 political Election comment astrologer)

    • 0
      0

      Next Prisidential election Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksha election No select. 2015 bad time. (K.Sunil In Sri Lanka)

  • 0
    0

    what about Magala Samarweera for Presidential election?
    The problem is women don’t want vote for Managala!

  • 0
    0

    “”Will any of the old guards such as Messrs D.M Jayarathne, Rathnasiri Wickramanayake or madam Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga break ranks to challenge the President?””

    Why don’t the above and JRJ’s nephew Ranil ask Ms TG to contest and/or ask her to suggest someone? She is playing a great role like that of Winston Churchill in warning about the modus Vivendi and operandi of Adolf Hitler (AH) with evidence not unlike Charles Darwin for the present days facts of evolution where there is the cardinal evidence of phylogeny repeating ontogeny in the uterus quite similar to external politico-sociol-economic milieu where MR & AH are concerned

  • 0
    1

    Obviously, the writer wants MR to come. Did he get a laptop? To some extent what he says is true? But it is a hopeless negativist article that invariably puts the vote in MR’s box!!!!

    • 0
      0

      can’t you see ..?? He is in middle.

  • 0
    0

    Known devil is better than known and unknown fairies.

  • 0
    0

    Why you consider so many people for presidency? It is because you are vwell aware that no one can challenge president Rajapaksha. In 90s we just cry for one issue to solve, we never ask anything more than that. That is eleminating terrorism from our soil. Who able to do that and How he able to that? It wasn’t a miracle. It was a total success of a brave leader with future vision who really love his people and his motherland. He is president Rajapaksha. Muslims, Tamils, Sinhalese or Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims or christians none of above are useless if they trying to sell our country to wetern powers or if they try to devide it. So race and cast have no important for the job, just ask by your self, who loves Sri lanka is the best for the presidency. It is only President Mahinda Rajapaksha and he should be in the post as long as he can, this is the wish of many Sri Lankans who have hopes on their future.

  • 0
    0

    High time we Srilankans consisting all nationals put an end to corrupt rogue politicians ruining our youth with their nefarious trades of heroine to illicit rackets, rigged election with thuggery & intimidation .
    Issuing media statements writing endless articles is no avail to make understand this dictatorial regime, besides all political parties are corrupt to core, UPFA UNP same JVP to lesser degree. High time the wise dignified intellectuals come forward voluntarily including the clergies of all religions to form a caretaker govt for a specified period (3or 5yrs) until we rid all menace from the society, its enough continuing with this system of presidential ,Provincial councils & pradeshya sabas, abolish all , give power to divisional secretaries under Caretaker Govt including the Police & Armed services. Hold free & fair elections after.
    The caretaker Govt (open to Discussions) should consists specified number as accepted by the honest respected intellectuals from Singhala , Tamil, & Muslim community (Lawyers, retired judges , doctors, Lecturers ,Accountants etc . Any one affiliated to political parties should be exempted but could be accommodated as an advisory board without any power on voluntary basis.
    First we form the members & keep ready, later we agitate for the system informing the masses.
    Anyone interested from above category please e-mail m.h.sheriff@hotmail

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