By Shyamon Jayasinghe –
“It is from weakness that people reach for dictators and concentrated government power. Only the strong can be free. And only the productive can be strong.”
We have been talking about Turkey’s Erdogan who recently won electoral support to be the country’s first Executive President. At the elections, Turkey began digging its grave. The country abandoned the Parliamentary system according to which decision-making is participatory and collaborative. Under the Parliamentary system there is a Prime Minister but the latter is subject to Parliamentary support. By this simple mechanism the Prime Minister is someone watched. Since Parliament is supreme, the law is supreme and every power holder has to perform within a country’s legal framework.
And so, we see Erdogan at the master game. The most crucial portfolio is that of finance. Our own Mahinda Rajapaksa awarded that role to himself whereas Erdogan has shown himself to be rather backward. He has entrusted the job to his trusted Son-in-law. After all, a good son-in-law is more trustworthy than anybody else; and if he has some knowledge of finance, unlike Mahinda who didn’t have a clue, he is up in the game as then he has less third parties to depend on. The job could be handled in style and sophistication. The subject of defence along with those of the army,navy, airforce and police is already with Erdogan. Our own Mahinda did have defense under him but he thought it practical to let someone trustworthy handle the nuts and bolts and work the machine of ultimate power. Mahinda gave it to brother Gota who had left the Forces and settled down in the US for many years. Gotabaya Rajapaksa smilingly returned to the island when brother Mahinda became President; yet Gota was keen to retain US citizenship -just in case. He still clings onto that- just in case. His patriotism is thus, just in case.
Mahinda did another smart thing. He appointed the other brother Basil as Minister in charge of Economic Development. This gave our own dear leader another great key to interfere with every government agency. In this way, the Rajapaksa family held about 80 per cent of Sri Lanka’s budget. Mahinda can now go to town! He wouldn’t give a damn. Dissentients beware as Brother Gota will do the job. With brother Mahinda’s blessings, Gota was veritably our own home-made Hiltler. The Venerable Anunayaka of Asgiriya has aksed only for a return of what was there. Why blame him? Brother Chamal was there to keep the house under control. Wimal was hired to shout. The two sons can dance at the periphery. If the family be in charge what’s wrong with sonna boy Namal running around with girls and racing cars?
The Central Bank? Cabraal can be trusted for money manipulations and issuing creative growth rates. Old Mohan is hundred per cent as we saw how it was reported that he had thrown the great temptation into the hands of the newly appointed yahapalanaya government: “Sir, I will give the verdict you want!” Our Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, was silly not to take that gift. Ranil has always been retrograde.
What a marvellous prospect!
Ever since I heard Xi Jinping in China declare himself “President for Life,” I have wondered why our beloved Mahinda did not do such a thing in the 18th Amendment. Xi Jing Ping now carries out different duties under separate titles. For example, he meets foreign dignitaries and receives ambassadors in his capacity as President; issues military directives as Chairman of the Central Military Commission; and upholds party rule through the office of General Secretary.
In like manner is Kim Jong-Un set. The latter is officially styled the “Supreme Leader of North Korea.’ He has got the media controlled by him to call him “Our Dear Leader.” Kim is also the Leader of the North Korean Workers Pary since 2012. His multifariously powerful role has no deadline, which means he will also be “for life.” Small wonder he keeps clapping. How stupid for Donmald Trump to follow that!
In comparison with the last two persons, Mahinda was absolutely backward, which means he was absolutely democratic. Or was Mahinda cocksure of getting back and then thinking about that grand idea of Xi Jinping? Sumanadasa should be shot-just as Lasantha Wickrematunge had been or, as a matter of fact, Thajudeen had been.
Surely, our dear leader would not go that cruel. Wasn’t he once upon a time a street fighter for Human Rights? Didn’ he go to the UN to protest when he was an ordinary Member of Parlaiment?