By Kumar David –
Maduluwave Sobitha hamudurovo has told it like it is in an interview with E. Jayasuriyan in the Sunday Thinakural (Tamil) of 2 February, print edition page 5, website www.thinakkural.lk. This is a volcano but the Sinhala and English press have still not picked it up (Tuesday 4 February). But no ways will anyone get away with self-censorship; it will come out. I will summarise the interview in a moment, but let me touch on two other points first.
Only a charlatan or a dunce would still believe that that there is even a remote possibility of this regime undertaking a genuine investigation of civilian deaths, disappearances and accountability issues – SL State and LTTE – during the civil-war and preceding it. Therefore it is welcome and appropriate, that in a body blow to President Mahinda Rajapakse, the Northern Provincial Council “unanimously” adopted a resolution targeted at the UNHRC demanding “an international investigation to uncover war crimes and crimes against humanity carried out against the Tamil people. . . the people do not have faith in any domestic investigations into past massacres or ongoing human rights violations”. In the absence of any truthful follow up what else are the mother’s of the disappeared and people of the North expected to do? Twiddle their thumbs and pretend nothing happened?
The NPC stand follows the TNA’s landslide victory in the September 2013 PC elections, which elections a reluctant Mahinda Rajapkse, kicking and screaming, could no longer prevent. Indian and pre-CHOGM pressure forced his hand, he had no choice; this was no gesture by a great democrat. (Self-serving ex-diplomats should stop making everyone laugh!) The NPC now represents the formal elected voice of the Tamil people and the UNHRC must accept and act on this. Let us not have another case of the world remaining silent; an international investigation is a must.
The Northern PC gives voice to the oppressed
The hypocrisy of an assortment of newspaper columnists, ex-diplomats well known for feathering their nests, and the bellicose Sinhala press, all decrying the NPC must be rebutted. The bottom line of this cacophony is simple; the Sinhala-Buddhist people or at least the chauvinist faction thereof, the regime, and the military are livid. Devolution and future concessions to the Tamils will be cut-off; the NPC should be dissolved on some pretext; these traitors must be clapped in irons. What does the ranting add up to? “We will not investigate war-crimes allegations, shut-up about it irrespective of whether it happened or not, and if you dare squeal to the outside world we will smash your face. We will not investigate, and we will smash you if you complain”. That’s the bottom line of what’s being said.
The NPC can cower in terror and keep its mouth shut like a battered woman who dare not complain of domestic violence for fear of repeated assaulted, or can stand up and demand justice. The victim is entitled to a public inquiry by an agency not beholden to the alleged perpetrator if all hope of redress within the existing institutional framework has disappeared. If so it is time to go public before the whole world. Frankly, only charlatans and knaves still say there is hope of fair investigation and redress within Sri Lanka’s prevailing institutional framework.
Some of my do-gooder liberal friends, UNPers, and even some leftists are worried that if the Tamils go open and demand an investigation it will strengthen Mahinda Rajapakse’s Sinhala nationalist appeal; his popularity will soar; why the hell don’t the bloody Tamils shut-up and bear up? I had just such a debate with two avowedly leftists, non-racist and self-proclaimed Marxists last Sunday (2 Feb). I say, if the demand for justice by a minority raises the hackles of chauvinism and makes an ogre even stronger, well so be it. Lanka will have to live through this hellish experience; it cannot be ducked.
Hamuduruwo takes a stand
Sobitha Hamuduruwo has taken a stand. In the afore mentioned interview he said. Yes I will to stand as a Single-Issue (SI) presidential candidate, but if the former Chief Justice or former President is interested, no problem, I am happy to step aside. I will serve for six months only within which time I will abolish the Executive Presidency (EP) and institute a parliamentary system by constitutional changes. The roots of bribery, corruption, nepotism and bad governance lie in the EP system.
Then he went on to add a stunner. “Sri Lanka is a part of the international community, we have to abide by international norms, and if there is a call for an international investigation of events in the country I have no problem in agreeing. If we have nothing to hide then we can go before an international investigation and vindicate ourselves”.
Hamuduruwo has thrown open a stunning challenge. He has said yes I am willing to stand for election as a common candidate on a single-issue platform, secondly he has said, yes sure if they want an investigation let them have it. Both the Rajapakse regime and other presidential hopefuls are probably throwing apoplectic fits right now. However, we must wait for confirmation of the interview, or at least a non-denial, before drawing these conclusions definitively.
The LSSP breaks new ground
The Central Committee of the LSSP at its 25 January meeting made a bold move. The CC called for abolition EP and demanded it be done before the next presidential elections. Party leader Professor Tissa Vitarane and left-leaning Dr Jayampathy Wickremeratne urged adoption of the resolution. The LSSP may not be a strong party now but the decision will impact the Communist Party which will follow suit (Aththa gave it banner headlines). The country’s biggest left party, the JVP, consistently fought to abolish EP and the clear headed and reliable Anura Kumara Dissanayake (AKD, what fine initials!), the new leader, will not deviate from this principled stand. Sarath Fonseka and his Democratic Party (DP) take the same position, and Ranil and the UNP, thankfully and finally, have endorsed it.
The TNA and the Tamils prevaricated for years because they hoped EP would give them some protection from parliamentary majoritarianism, but the bitter experiences of JR and Mahinda have ended the illusion. Who remains holding a fig-leaf to cover the naked autocracy of EP? Technically, not even the SLFP; its election manifestos have declared abolition of EP to be a central task since the 1980s. Chandrika promised twice, and defaulted; Mahinda promised twice and lied. The only organisms in this benighted nation partisan to EP inhabit the innards of the Rajapakse cabal.
I raised the option of a common opposition presidential candidate on a SI ticket about a year ago, but interest subsided when the two strongest options demurred. Maduluwawe Sobitha has now taken a stand, but what about Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga (CBK)? Last week there was a small flutter. Answering questions after a meeting, she was drawn into presidency talk and this is what she said. “I do not have such an aspiration . . . but I believe that anything can change . . . I cannot say for sure what will happen”. Hmm, interesting; let us take leave it at that and turn to another angle.
If I were given a magic wand to choose, who would I anoint as the common candidate on a SI ticket? I would be sitting on the horns of a dilemma like the rest of you who want to see the back of Rajapakse. It is widely agreed that CBK and Hamudurowo are the most-likely-to-win options; forget Fonseka. So the next step is to look at plusses and minuses.
There just two criteria. Who is the better vote puller? Who is more trustworthy on the SI issue? Let me insert a quick reminder of the Single-Issue concept. A candidate presents himself/herself asking for just one mandate. Win the presidency; take steps to abolish EP, (dissolve the incumbent parliament if it is obstructs the mandate and hold fresh elections); write a constitution creating a parliamentary system; then get out, go home, and enjoy the tranquillity of the pansala, or a wine and cheese at Rosemead Place. Hence there only two tasks facing the common opposition candidate; (a) WIN, (b) ABOLISH EP.
This is precisely where the dilemma originates. CBK is said to be the stronger vote puller, that is she will win easier because she will split the SLFP and take with her not only a majority of the old guard but also much of the SLFP base vote. Added to joint opposition backing – UNP, Fonseka (?), and all the minorities – this is a no-brainer winner. I have not mentioned the JVP as no one can say what it will do at the last minute. On the other hand, folks trust Hamudurowo, not CBK, to fulfil promises. CBK’s drawback is that she is untrustworthy and undisciplined. Fonseka may be a spoiler; he is debarred from contesting, but have no doubt, Rajapakse will grant an amnesty so that he can run as a third option to split the opposition. If the DP outpolls the UNP in the Western and Southern PCs, this is indeed a fly in the ointment; otherwise Fonseka’s delusions will peter out. The foolish General rejected a UNP offer to make Anoma Chief Ministerial candidate on a UNP-DP joint ticket for the WPC. Too much marching and thumping in jackboots liquefies the brain.
In her first term CBK showed not a sliver of interest in abolishing EP, though even if she tried it would have been easier to find a polar bear in the Kalahari than enough UNPers to deliver a two-thirds majority. In her second-term, in year 2000, initially she tried to smuggle in a provision enabling her to hang on till completion of her term before abolition took effect. When the UNP said ‘no’, she climbed down and agreed to abandon the swindle; by then, Ranil had changed his mind and said “no deal”. The coot thought he could win a presidential election; or maybe an ass that learns only the hard way!
As things stand now my magic wand is pointing at Hamuduruwo.
Fathima Fukushima / February 9, 2014
NPC, LSSP and BBS are political non entities!
No one cares about them. No Srilankan votes for them.
Burt / February 9, 2014
Hay stupid cow NPC got more than 80% of the votes.
Dude / February 9, 2014
Cool running Dude AKD!
Good work and nice initials BTW!
Either the Thero of CBK would do as long as they get rid of Jarapassa..
Dodo / February 9, 2014
Thanks Dr. David! Keep it coming and you’ll get the award for Lanka’s No. 1 Political crystal ball gazer..
Pleasure to read always. tho don’t always agree..
CBK OR Sobitha Thero would be just fine as opposition Joint candidate to get rid of Mahinda Rajapaksa, though still seems a bit like Hobson’s Choice: since, don’t like the idea of Monks in Politics or power..
So let’s hope that CBK can be HONEST and deliver this time around since all things change and one hopes that the lady has evolved and learned from past mistakes.. and she certainly sounds good when she espouses multiculturalism and religious co-existence…
Don Stanely / February 9, 2014
AKD – Now that the UNP seems finished don’t you think that TNA should contest WPC elections in Colombo?
TNA should stop just being a just a parochial regional northeast Tamil party..
TNA will win many Tamil and Muslim votes if it runs a good campaign and can replace UNP as the opposition in the capital city where it will attract educated voters who want a change from the corrupt UNP and SLFP.. Time is ripe for TNA to think and act like a NATIONAL PARTY and become a bigger player – in the struggle to save Lanka from the Jarapassa Military Dictatorship and Sinhala Modayas who vote for them..
Amarasiri / February 13, 2014
Ven. Maduluwave Sobitha hamudurovo
“I had just such a debate with two avowedly leftists, non-racist and self-proclaimed Marxists last Sunday (2 Feb). I say, if the demand for justice by a minority raises the hackles of chauvinism and makes an ogre even stronger, well so be it. Lanka will have to live through this hellish experience; it cannot be ducked.”
Yes, so be it. Ven. Maduluwave Sobitha hamudurovo is a true Buddhist.
The LSSP and CP licked the asses of the Monk Mahanama Sihala Buddhists and Politicians, and gave up the egalitarian society.
Sri Lanka needs true Buddhists who follow the Buddha Dhamma.
Why is it that only in Sri Lanka there are no Tami; Buddhists? Monk Mahanama racists? What a farce.
Paul / February 9, 2014
How is he going to abolish the presidency without a parliamentary majority?
sirimal / February 9, 2014
This he will explain in the days to come.
Yes, we should all vote for him if he would be the common candidate.
Paul / February 9, 2014
I’d rather he explain now, otherwise he will not get many votes!
sirimal / February 9, 2014
a) we need to wait few more weeks
b) Incumbent could also abolish EP in the last minute before the next E is held, intending to stay in power. We are all aware that he is a good actor than the ones in hollywood and talented at abusing gawy masses again and again.Latter could well be the reason why the thero has not detailed it at this stage.
Paul / February 9, 2014
Thank you Sirimal
Sirimal / February 11, 2014
Every right thinking ones must rally round to support the thero:
You may listen to the following and decide what his ideas have been:
Law must be equal to everyone
They complain, hear the case, decide the punishments
All amendments have been in favour of the president
Regardless of party, race, religion, we need to act
MrRetort / February 9, 2014
After losing even Rajapakse UPFA support scraping of Presidential system for he would not want be at the receiving end of another Presidential power for abuses he has committed. If lose we would see the about turn of all the MP’S hang on to new power. This Sri Lanka parties and their ideology. Winner will get 5/6 majority for scrapping no doubts about that.
Ivor Biggun / February 9, 2014
I agree with AKD’s (Kumar’s!) views, although it is no different in essence from him previous article, which made breaking news, at least as far as those who don’t/didn’t read the Tamil newspaper which carried the ‘incendiary’ interview.
If only those who claim to be leaders of political parties and who subscribe to the view that the Executive Presidency (EP) is the bane of Lanka, will put their heads together for the common cause and then act in concert to topple the regime at the hustings, they will be doing the country a tremendous tremendous service. There should be a seriously well-thought out plan to take the baton beyond the demise of EP of course, to avoid a totally chaotic “I told you so” situation thereafter. There are plenty of capable people among existing government employees, cerebral corporate executives (NOT the likes of the Maharajahs I’m afraid!), Clergy (many decent people amongst the saffron-robed, Bishop Chickera etc), judiciary, the legal fraternity, seasoned foreign service personnel, academics and the laity at large who can be brought together to craft out a suitable home-grown solution, and the current decent leaders of political parties and think-tanks should take this news as a clarion call and start deliberations now (if it is not already happening!).
We have had so many manifestations of the evil policies under EP that no sensible people should ever tolerate, and those who claim to be leaders must now take personal responsibility to get rid of EP forever.
ruwan / February 9, 2014
v well stated !
punchisingho / February 9, 2014
Dear Dr. Kumar David!
Please answer the following questions.
1) Will the majority of voters cast their votes for the Thera only to abolish the EP? ( My answer is ‘No’. Why?majority are not so much worried about EP.They vote for the candidate who promise to solve their burning problems, such as food, housing, jobs,land etc.
2) Suppose the Thera wins.Then how can he abolish the EP within six months.How can he be sure that the present parliament will pass a new constitution or constitutional reforms?Will the corrupt MPs support the Thera? They will try to unseat the Thera from the first day.So a new Parliamentary elections will have to be held. It will take another three months which means the Thera will not be able to keep his pledge within six months.
3) Can he get votes from the Tamils, Muslims and Sinhala Christians?
4 )Can he win the support of TNA, Thondaman, Chandrasekar,Muslim Congress?
5) Can he get support of UNP?
6) Can he get the support of the General and his party?
7) Will the CPSL and the LSSP break ranks to support the Thera?
Hope you will answer.
MrRetort / February 9, 2014
All powerful in the country And SLFP lost all that with in few weeks after winning. same fate will follow to Rajapakses. First one to jump would be Wimal the patriot you take my words.
Sengodan. M / February 9, 2014
If and when a Presidential candidate can win an election on the SI of abolition of EP, half the game is over. That popularity will pave the way for a parliamentarian triumph to reach the desired goal. The rest are simply details!
crazyoldmansl / February 9, 2014
1. Well as a Thero he is the ultimate repository of Sinhala Buddhist fascism so yes they will vote for him.
2. Dissolve Parliament. Provide free air transport to any politicians wishing to leave the country to go to China or other third world dictatorships and give them helitransport to the airport to avoid being killed and burned by mobs.
3. Arrest all those suspected of torture, rape and murder and charge them under the criminal law.
4. Invite the UNO to immediately set up war crimes tribunal and arrest all LTTE and Military and Civilian suspects and charge them.
5. Hold referendum on YES/NO to new constitution that replaces the sinhala buddhist “Sri Lankan” state with something a lot better – YES will win. ( some salient features of the constitution: Language of administration English with provision for use of Sinhala and Tamil. Policy position: Mother tongue at home in private. English at work and in public. Clear definition of ethnic identities. Devolution of power to provincial councils. Independent judiciary, civil service and police force. Armed forces and LTTE armed cadres absorbed into civilian life. Cabinet cut down to 1 minister per million citizens = 20 Ministers. Ministers and MPs and all elected representatives required to use public transport without security and with only one personal secretary as accompaniment, all political parties rrequired to have democratc constitutions that do not violate human rights and to hold regular elections of office bearers and to make public their program and policies in English, Sinhala and Tamil and many other interesting provisions.)
6. Hold first elections under the new constitution.
7. Commence accelerated devolved development plan with top priority to those areas that have been bombed and affected by fighting on the ground.
I know the rest too.
Give me the job and I will do it.
Kumar David / February 9, 2014
I do not usually intervene in the discussion since it must be allowed to have its natural flow. However this time few people including Emil V de P have said I must reply to Punchisingho. So here goes.
1)If the majority vote to retain EP, that’s that, and EP will remain. I feel that the majority will agree that their problems cannot be solved under EP and will agree to the 6 months as unavoidable correction-sacrifice time before getting down to the basic governance issues you raise. Anyway this is the whole point of my proposal; let’s put it to the test and see. There is no other way to go beyond debating.
2)If parliament obstructs a mandate freshly given to an SI President it will be dissolved forthwith. New elections can be held within 2 months. In any case the drafting of a new constitution will go on in parallel. In fact drafts have already been presented by groups working with the Thero and the UNP; they are bridgeable. At the new parliamentary election those who support the abolition of EP will go forward with a common draft on the basis of a parliamentary alternative. The whole thing can be finished within four months in my opinion, but let us say six to be on the safe side.
3)Yes I am certain the Tamils, Muslims and Christians will vote against Mahinda. It will be easy to overcome the “yellow robe bogey” once the TNA is on board and sections of the Muslim leadership come on board. As for Christians, have no worry, they hate Gotha-Mahinda whatever games old fox Malcolm Ranjit plays.
4)Yes the TNA and probably most Muslim leaders will come on board to abolish SI (nobody is asking them to form a coalition government). Tonnda and Chandrasekara, I don’t know; if you get one you may lose the other!
5)If CBK’s section of the SLFP and the UNP do not support a SI common candidate I think the whole SI-CC project is weakened if not fatally wounded (whoever the candidate). But I am pretty confident they will join. Ranil and the UNP want to GOVERN, they are not interested in 6-month transitional administrations. They all have their greedy eyes on the subsequent substantive government. Bet you, Ranil, CBK and even MR himself will all be already looking beyond the 6 months to coming to power in the new (5 year?, 6 year?) parliamentary system.
6)and 7). I don’t know about General, LSSP and CP but why not they support abolition of EP, which they all claim to hate, and then look to the new parliamentary opportunities? The bigger worry for me is the JVP which is 100% against EP and if it is sensible should back any cat for 6 months to do the job – what does it matter if it’s black or white (or yellow) so long as it catches the EP rat! With Candrika’s-SLFP, UNP, TNA , JVP and half-SLMC on board this is a walkover. Even without a few of the smaller units, it’s an easy winner. Don’t forget that people hate corruption, abuse of power, misgovernment etc and they lay the blame much at the door of EP.
Come on Punchi, let’s put it to the test, no point just debating!
crazyoldmansl / February 9, 2014
Do not be a coward David. You cannot elect Hitler out of office.
Ramany K / February 10, 2014
Comrade,when you left old LSSP we were happy that you were going to make revolution but you disappointed us.Now you have turned to the extreme right.Now we realize that in the old days you so called revolutionaries tried to dupe the masses.You flashed left and turned right.Now even stopped flashing left. Now you are in the company of Tamil racists, reactionaries and international conspirators.Do you remember Comrade Annamali who was killed by the tigers.Did you ever ask for internal inquiry for the killing of comrade Annamalai at et al.,let alone international investigation.There is nothing revolutionary about what you and Vikramabahu say nowadays.You never utter a word about imperialism. Recent history has taught us that revolution cannot be made with the support of the western governments. The western countries failed in Afghanistan,Iraq,Libya,Egypt and Sudan to name a few countries.We dont want that happen in Srilanka.Of course there are problems in our countries.Lets sort it out internally,otherwise what happened five centuries ago will happen again. Portuguese ,Dutch ,British came under the guise of sorting out our problems.Then they subjugated us for five centuries .We have been bitten too many times.We should be forever shy.
JimSofty / February 10, 2014
One from Tamil Nadu and one from Denmark are trying divide Sri Lanka.
Banda / February 10, 2014
Keep on dreaming profesori. It’s good to keep up your ego.
I hope you’ll agree with me that MR is no fool but a master strategist. I am sure, MR has learned that the opposition may have common rhetoric but cannot form a common alliance with a common agenda. Needles to say then, if worse come to worst, he would hold the parliamentary elections first and not the presidential elections to offset the anti-nationalists (Sobitha) regime change plan. Just like the two coming-up PC elections MR’s party will win such a parliamentary elections hands down. Needless to say, latest US resolution at UNHRC will give MR and his party a considerable helping hand.
Now, even if Sobitha achieve a hypothetical win at the followed up presidential election, he will not have the majority let alone the two third backing in the parliament to pass a new constitution he is talking about. Not just that, he will not be able to dissolve the new parliament for one year. Hypothetical President Sobitha will be in the same slippers as Chandrika K in 1994. Sinhala people are no fools; they smell the rat in all these stupid scenarios of David and co.
In the present polarised political climate, this common candidature is a double edged sword: Remember, SF was as popular as MR when he gave his nomination as the common candidate to contest the presidential election. Indeed, he was neck to neck with MR at the start. But when his backers and partners were known, Sinhala people realized his game plan and what’s in the store for them. Consequently, MR became the favourite of the Sinhala electorate and SF became the favourite of the Tamil electorate. Forget jillmart but observe the results. You’ll see who voted whom.
Coming back to Ven Sobitha, he was a left inclined radical monk who has always looked for fame. But he has never ever reached the popularity of SF. I know Olcott Buddhists, extremist Christians, Wahhabi Muslims and racist Tamils like David hate MR. I know they would even join up with the devil to change the ‘regime’. But it’s rather silly for them to equate Sobitha with the likes of Ven Soma and look up to him to split votes that cast in favor of MR.
Ven Soma was a selfless monk who was immensely popular among Sinhala Buddhists. The look up for him for solace at a time when Dona Catherina and Don Juan were playing pandu with Sinhala Buddhists. Sinhala Buddhists know very well that Ven Soma would never have a common truck with the separatists and their sponsors.
By backing the case for war crime investigation, Sobitha has let everyone know who his real backers, his policy makers and sponsors. To say it all in short, Sobitha has shot himself in the foot.
Upali Wickramasinghe / February 10, 2014
dr. Kumar David,I disagree with you on two grounds.Do not blame SF for not committing himself with the joint opposition in the WP election.He had been let down once, he need not push his wife into the fire.If everybody cooperated with him he would not have been in the mess he got into.Who drafted the election petition, why was the judgement not challenged, if the election petition was properly drafted?
Secondly, there is a short cut. Work on the Supreme Court to make the 1972 and 1977 constitutions null.They are null because they were voted in only by the Parliament without the consent of the people, which in truth is democracy.As I said earlier, France under De gaulle ( many times), Brazil, Nicaragua,Bolivia, venezuela canada Burma all went through a referendum. We did not. We are being governed by “Their Constitution” and not one of ours.
GET BACK TO THE SOULBURY CONSTITUTION. This proposal may be not acceptable to you, because the 1972 was “Made by the LSSP”. but it is the bitter truth
Upali Wickramasinghe / February 10, 2014
I have said this earlier too.Please make your comment on it.
noel-jones / February 11, 2014
Kumar David, Don’t waste your words. Be patient until the Western and South Provincial election over and then you can get an idea also Ven. Sobitha and the rest of Diaspora people too . It is only a month away. But i would like to add more to your third answer.
You said in your third answer that, “Yes I’m certain that Muslim,Tamils and Christians will vote against Mahinda”. Why they vote against Mahinda?
Because MR is the only Leader who gave prominent place to Buddhism [according to the constitution] and the poor Sinhala buddhist people. He is the only leader who dedicate to improve the schools and the curriculam in remote areas. In 60’s there were 37 “A” grade schools in Jaffna[mostly funded by Church] alone and only one in Hambantota district. The Leaders in that time completely neglected common Sinhala buddhist people. Because those [Radala Kalu Suddhos]knew that if those poor people get the good education, it will threaten to their own survival. And also they want to supress the Buddhism.
And MR is the only leader who safeguard the border villages and the people who victimised by LTTE. He is the only leader who take steps to improve their living standard. He is the only leader who prevent illegal land grabbing specially by Muslims and Tamils in Eastern province and North. And he is the only leader who take steps to preserve Buddhist arch. sites in Eastern and North provinces.
Because he gave prominent place to Buddhism,Christian/Catholic church and Muslim’s don’t like him.
Because he take steps to prevent illegal land grabbing in Eastern province Muslims don’t like him.
Because he did not allow NPC to work as they wish, Tamils don’t like him. [I’m not say all but most of Christians,Tamils and Muslims].
Isn’t it Kumar David?
Sirimal / February 11, 2014
As if you guys still believe/ commend that the elections will be free and fair ???ß
I think holding eleciton under the rule of UPFTA highly corrupted coalition should be cancelled for the following reasons.
A) They abuse all ethical conducts as issued by EC himself
B) They distribute materials to the poor – deceiving them further which is totally abusive in compliance with the elecition guidelines.
c) State media is being unnecessarily used for their propaganda, while the opposition parties have no such chances
D) President himself uses his so called inaugaration whatever…. for propaganda purposes neglecting the high cost of livings.. but wasting people money for his travels.
President should see how many times Indian premier travels to open those developement related projects. Almost none. As Indian premier he has got lot more other valuable things to do… but this man..is always on a mission to kiss and caress babies of poorest of the poor, in the same time, abusing those masses to the core.
daya.thevi / February 9, 2014
I couldn’t have said it better.
“The NPC stand follows the TNA’s landslide victory in the September 2013 PC elections, which elections a reluctant Mahinda Rajapkse, kicking and screaming, could no longer prevent. Indian and pre-CHOGM pressure forced his hand, he had no choice; this was no gesture by a great democrat. (Self-serving ex-diplomats should stop making everyone laugh!)”
Hopefully, for once D.J & Jehan Perera will take the hint.
Ramany K / February 9, 2014
//an international investigation is a must.//
What are the Tamils going to achieve by an international investigation?MR could be tried in the Hague. Will the North and east be merged?Will more powers be devolved to the NPC?Will the army in the Tamil areas be withdrawn?No,nothing is going to happen.International investigation will only drive a wedge between the Sinhalese and Tamils.Those who really want peace in SL and unity among all the communities will never support international investigation.
Native Vedda / February 9, 2014
“No,nothing is going to happen.International investigation will only drive a wedge between the Sinhalese and Tamils.”
The stupid Tamils and stupid Sinhalese have the tendency to hammer wedges into their back all the time and into each others, hence an international investigation won’t make much difference. Even without an investigation both will be at each others back anyway.
One should not come to swift conclusion that all investigation ends in punishment.
Navin / February 9, 2014
It is to establish that they have been persecuted by Sinhala dominated governments in the South and thus justify their demand for independence or significant autonomy to the level of a confederation like Canada, EU, Switzerland etc.
Its not MR/GR/SF they are after.
LEVI / February 9, 2014
Dear Ramany K
The biggest wedge splitting the Sinhala an Tamil Society is the Medamulana family wedge.
The wedge is trying its best to split the country into pieces by setting one against the other.
Yes if you really want to be peaceful. The best place is the cemetery.
With the family rule even cemeteries are not spared.
The status quo is that no powers are devolved in any PC leave alone NPC.
Semblance of devolved power is made apparent other PCs as they are run by the Family.
Unity amongst all communities could be achieved only if a fully democratic parliament has executive powers.
Peace Achieved by the thinking of single individual or by a clan is nothing but utter suppression of all decent human standards.
crazyoldmansl / February 9, 2014
CBK will not do it. If you make her president then she will sit on that chair till she is thrown out.
Piyadasa Yalagala / February 9, 2014
Abolish or deprive of Executive Presidential system of Govt., is NOT the principle & national vested interest of Sri lanka in time being.
It is obvious that undermine People’s Sovereignty, Territorial Integrity and Independence of our Nation. Result of abolish EP system will further more it will lead to encourage Separatism and Secession of Tamil-communal forces inside and outside our an Island.
Our task is democratic capitalist stage. Its need unity of all nationalities, peace and stability for security whole island.
This is another venture of New Game Plan by hegemony politics of US and India that, turn into a new FORM of re-colonization of Sri Lanka. During war and after that our democratic task demanded unity of masses of people non-capitalist path, EP of abolish will NOT apply any more as in the per-war era.
Sobitha Harmdurura’s, mindset is unable to absorb, that real crux of problem ongoing knowledge of political theoretical perspective that abolished EP that sorry say that is out of his vision.
Monk’s is out of touch that knowledge of evaluation political development last 30 years until End of War 2009 May. Is in reality Monk NOT FIT for highest helm of power Sri Lankan even for six months.
Medalankara de Choppe / February 10, 2014
Yalagala Mahatthayo, it was the Executive Presidency that caused the LTTE to come up, for the 30 years of war.
The cause of the split in racial relations between the Sinhalayas and the Tamils is mainly the yellow robed gentry, my relations.
Jayan / February 9, 2014
The real problem is not the EP but the miss use of EP for self gain. Ven. Sobitha Thero should not only abolish the EP and establish a system that is transparent & accountable. And most importantly the country needs to regain what it lost due to due to corruption. We all know who are the crooks, and need to prosecute them before they run away with the loot.
Emil van der Poorten / February 9, 2014
Thank you for making some very relevant points which I hope Kumar David will respond to for at least the edification of all those who read his analyses.
Safa / February 9, 2014
The power of the Executive can be curtailed simply by removing his powers over parliment and making appointments of PM, Cabinet and other Public Officials. These are contained in the portion of the constitution dealing with ‘The Executive’ and 18A.
Sovereignity should be returned to the elected representatives of the people. This can be exercised by parliment by consensus. One man should no longer be able to control the finances of the country nor dictate who does what nor give orders to the police etc. These should be exercised collectively by the elected representatives in parliment.
Single issue candidate will be above politics and be backed by all political parties. All political parties will have to come to a consensus on the required amendments to the constitution. These should be only for the purpose of removing the executive presidiency.
There should be a duly constituted constituent assembly appointed by the SI President to agree on the amendments. No single office should be so strong as to over rule and takeover the others. Constitution may not be amended without recourse to a contituent assembly.
Dr.Rajasingham Narendran / February 9, 2014
Democratise the political parties as a first step. Unless there is internal debate within political parties on ideas and policies, the slide will continue with whatever system we adopt. There should not be one strong man at the helm and poodles licking his boots. The US system permits individuals within the party fold to emerge as leaders at various levels. Registered party members have a say in selecting the candidates to contest various positions.
Further, as I have argued before it is not the Executive Presidency that is at fault, but the debility of the checks and balances in our constitution. What was badly designed by JRJ has been made worse by MR.
Many who sing praises for the Westminster system seem to be unaware or have forgotten what it was made into by our politicians. The checks and balances that were well defined in the Soulbury constitution were subverted at every turn and gradually dismembered.
Our constitutional history is a tragi-comedy!
Ven. Sobitha Thero, cannot correct what is wrong about us the citizens of this country, who have been made to fight each other over meaningless issues, including our history, while the monkeys got away with the loot.
I am also wary about the prelate’s entry into politics, because it may be the precursor to an unsavoury phenomenon. I also think we are throwing a good man to the wolves, because of our inability exercise our rights as citizens and evolve persons who are fit to be exemplary and democratic leaders.
We will get only what we deserve.
Dr. Rajasingham Narendran
Navin / February 10, 2014
Under the US War Powers Act, the president has 90 days after introducing troops into hostilities to obtain congressional approval of that action. According to web sources, as of September 2009 it possessed 5,113 nuclear warheads operationally deployed, in active reserve, or held in inactive storage. These include thermonuclear weapons which are 1000 times more powerful (megaton vs. kiloton) than those they dropped on Japan.
Now how many days do you think US president needs to destroy the whole world? I think in 90 days he can destroy the world several times over:-)
shankar / February 10, 2014
navin,barrack is a dog in the manger.If he has so much excess why can’t he sell some to friendly countries such as canada,australia ,NZ,japan and south korea.That should teach china a lesson too.
Navin / February 10, 2014
They already have! All these countries have defense treaties with US that include sharing nukes should that become necessary. Canada in particular is a member of NATO.
shankar / February 10, 2014
“Many who sing praises for the Westminster system seem to be unaware or have forgotten what it was made into by our politicians. The checks and balances that were well defined in the Soulbury constitution were subverted at every turn and gradually dismembered.”
DR.RN,then the next step after getting rid of the presidency is to revert back to the soulbury constitution.
What about the Donoughmore constitution?Which is better,soulbury or donoughmore? don’t ask mahinda,he might think it is a doughnut.
At the next interview sobitha should be asked whether he prefers the 1972 constitution or the soulbury or donoughmore because it is still withing his mandate of single issue because after getting rid of presidency you can’t just leave a vacuum and resign.You have to put back the best form of parliamentary system and resign.
Wickramasiri / February 11, 2014
Agree with you. Now then people, how sure are we that there will be another presidential election?
crazyoldmansl / February 9, 2014
No Kumar! LSSP and especially Tissa and CP just got massive kick up their asses.
crazyoldmansl / February 9, 2014
and Kumar, ask the ADB about its donor relationship with the “left” in Sri Lanka. They know that there is nothing left about the left but they do understand that the starved lefties are happy to sing and dance if given supper.
shankar / February 9, 2014
kumar david is going to write about sobitha every day till the election.I hope mahinda has the election soon and done with.
Sengodan. M / February 9, 2014
CBK will definitely have a much better chance to win than the Thera but will be much less dependable to keep the promise of abolition of EP.
Bruz / February 9, 2014
It’s all nice to read and dream, but do you all really think that MR an Gota will just keep quiet without doing anything, they and we know better ?
They will NEVER allow any of this sort happening. They have all the machinery to stop every effort anyone is planning to do. These guys are hard core and have lots of practical experience dealing with any kind of threat enveloping around them. Gota is grooming up his forces(Army,Navy,Air Force) to deal with all kinds of “disturbances”. They don’t loose anything.
Whether you murder one or one million, the maximum punishment is only LIFE.
They have already done murders, massacres,assassinations, kidnappings, disappearances and all the crimes and they don’t care. Ven Sobitha or CBK is no match and these people will never allow this nation to have peace. A Myanmar type of country will come about and these undesirables will continue with all their activities. UNHCR, USA, UK, Geneva all will fizzle out and India will say they are “watching everything” and will do nothing constructive. They, the Indians hate Sri Lanka, Sinhalese, Tamils and even Muslims. They are only worried about China and it’s influence in Sri Lanka.
Ven,Sobitha is an honest prelate but CBK is untrustworthy. There is no one else today who can do something until and unless something happens to MR & Co. They will never ever give up their hold. They have Gota to do all the dirty job for them and survive and they will. Why do you think he is building up the forces even after the war ended almost 5 years ago ? Who do you think running the country today ? It’s not Mahinda the king, but it’s none other than Gota the crazy goon. We have to suffer much more….
Patriot / February 10, 2014
Bruz, you have given a very realistic analysis about the prevailing state of affairs in the country. However, there is nothing to loose by trying to dislodge Mara by bringing in Sobhitha Thera, the HONEST PRELATE, as the common candidate now that he has given his consent according to Prof Kumar David.
Ajith / February 9, 2014
“”Some of my do-gooder liberal friends, UNPers, and even some leftists are worried that if the Tamils go open and demand an investigation it will strengthen Mahinda Rajapakse’s Sinhala nationalist appeal; his popularity will soar; why the hell don’t the bloody Tamils shut-up and bear up?””””
I would like to respond to those do-gooder liberal friends, UNPers, and those leftists.
The fundamental mistake of this argument is that it assumes that the Sinhala masses can be easily manipulated with nationalistic fundamentalism. It is true that the nationalistic appeal by the Sinhala politics since the independence brought this country to untold destruction of human values, democratic values, moral principles of the religions. The nation would have flourished socially and economically if there was no nationalistic politics. How many of these do-gooders think Nationalistic politics benefited to Sinhala masses and to the Nation? Did the nationalistic politices stop the massacre of 10,000 Sinhala youths in 1970 or massacre of over 60,000 Sinhala youths in 1989? Did this enhanced our National wealth or social status of the people? Tamils suffered lot in the hands of Sinhala Nationalism but Sinhalese suffered lot in the hands of Sinhala authoritarian rule. Though Sinhala Nationalism used all National resources against Tamils for last 65 years, they stood strongly and still they are politically, economically and morally in superior position than Sinhala because of the Sinhala Nationalism. Further appeal to Sinhala Nationalism will bring further destruction to Sinhala and to this island.
If those do-gooders are really interested to build a politically, economically, socially sound united Nation, you all should say good bye to this regime and those who preach nationalistic politics. Give up your ministerial posts, face the threats of Nationalists and educate the people by telling the Truth. Look at the international pressure against the authoritarian regime and its nationalistic appeal as positive to bring a change that is good for the people and Nation.
Gambler / February 10, 2014
ONLY SOME ARE GUILTY & THE VAST MAJORITY OF US DO NOT WANT TO CARRY A CRIMINAL’S BURDEN
GOOD HAS TO OVERCOME EVIL
EITHER OUR LLRC GETS THERE FIRST (NOW) OR OUTSIDERS GETS INVOLVED; WE MATURE OR IMMATURE?
Bensen Burner / February 10, 2014
Kumar should not labour this theme too much but leave it for interested parties to keep guessing. Bensen
Upali Wickramasinghe / February 10, 2014
Dr. Kumar David, I read you articles regularly.You, Sobitha Hamuduruwo, (forget the UNP and the SLFP) had forgotten one critical reason for the mess.The tax payers money is spent on crazy projects without a semblance of planning, without a semblance of critical analysis. This had been going on since 1977. A good example is the Matara grounds next to the Bus Stand. It was done up at a cost of many millions during CBK’s govt under the guidance of Mangala S. Came the change in 2001 and the UNP MP for Matara Mr.Wijesekara got it dug up, forgetting the millions of tax payers money spent on it.This is a problem with both the UNP and the SLFP.
Take the appointment of P.B.Jayasundara and N.cabraal.The people should have the capacity to get rid them from the posts they hold when they mess up. These two have a lot to answer but are saved by the party in power, in the case pf PBJ since 1994.