28 September, 2020

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On Common Candidate Competition

By P. Bertie Ranaweerage

Bertie Ranaweerage

Bertie Ranaweerage

It seems that somebody has organized an essay writing competition on the topic of ‘common candidate’. Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka has proposed Mr. Anura Kumara Dissanayake, the leader of the JVP as the best common candidate while Mr. Kusal Perera , a journalist, proposed Mr. Wigneswaran, the Chief Minister of the Northern Provincial Council. A few months ago Dr. Kumar David  said Venarable Maduluwave Sobhitha Thera was the best common candidate. In the mean time quite a large number of Colombo Telegraph readers, in their comments,  had proposed Ms. Chnadrika Bandaranaike Kumarathunga as the most suitable person to challenge Mahinda and a few had proposed Mr. Ranil Wicremesinghe, the Leader of the Opposition . I too wish to join this competition though I do not hope to win a prize.

Nobody knows whether the Presidential election will be held at the end  of his tenure or before that. In case the President and his close advisers feel that waiting till the end of the tenure will be disadvantageous it will probably  be held on an auspicious day for the President within the next 18 months. It is safer to expect it in 2015 .

There is no  doubt that Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka is looking forward to the victory of the incumbent President at the next election. What his  many articles  reveals  is that  he appreciates the way the  President  rules the country. Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka is probably not much worried about militarization, erosion of democracy, deterioration of rule of law  and  incessant violations of human rights. As such, I am compelled to believe that there is no significant difference on how both of them look at many a  issue. So who says ‘No’ if I say that  his wish is nothing but to see the incumbent President at  Temple Trees for the third time.

Why do I say so?

Chandrika Kumaratunga

Chandrika Kumaratunga

He knows very well that Mr. Anura Kumara Dissanayake whom he proposed as the common candidate is a lame  horse in a Presidential election race. But he proposes him  not because he loves  him or the JVP but because he wants to bloat the ego of A.K.D. and the JVP and through it to prevent the possible support of the JVP for the common candidate that has the ability to defeat the incumbent President at the next election. My view is he wants the JVP to contest alone at the presidential election if it fails to get support from other parties for its candidate. It is not illogical if some believe that  Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka plays the role of an agent provocateur whose objective is to sow seeds of confusion, suspicion, divisions and  infightings in the Opposition camp .

Now let us turn to Mr. Kusal Perera who made an attempt to promote Mr. Wigneswaran, the Chief Minister of the NPC as the common Presidential candidate. He had written so many things why ‘Wiggie’ should be the ‘’national common candidate’, but Mr. Wigneswaran knows better. He is matured enough to understand the hidden scheme behind the proposal.  Hence he immediately rejected the proposal knowing that his candidature would guarantee the victory of Mahinda.

A former National Organizing Secretary of Ceylon Teachers Union once said to me that Kusal had served as a member of MP Mahinda Rajapaksa’s staff  when he was the MP for the Beliatta electorate in 70s and 80s. While he seems to be some sort of leftist and a friend of the Tamil community, apparently he still has a soft spot for the President. He knows in the event that Mr. Wigneswaran comes to the stage as the common candidate it will be a cake walk back to the Presidential House for the incumbent President.

Now let us turn to Dr. kumar David who wrote a number of articles why Venerable Sobhitha Thera was the best bet to defeat Mahinda. It is apparent that he honestly believes that the Thera can defeat the incumbent President at the forthcoming presidential election. I wonder why he cannot see that Rev. Thera’s candidature will be a free ticket to Mahinda to the President’s House (or Temple Trees) as the Thera will not be able to win the votes of the Tamils let alone the Muslims. In a contest between the Thera and the President,  it is very doubtful that the Thera will be able to get more Sinhala votes than the President will. It is quite obvious that the common candidate has to be a personality who can garner the votes of the Tamils and the Muslims in addition to the votes of the Sinhalese as the President’s campaign will mainly focus  on the Sinhalese votes. Weerawansa, JHU, and all the Sinhala extremist groups such as the BBS will campaign for the President to the hilt and will not hesitate to tell the Sinhalese that Wigneswaran will form an Eelam government in the North in case the Venerable Thera wins.

I am further bewildered why he believes in One Issue Campaign. Though executive presidential system is an elephantine  issue to the politically enlightened people it is not such a big issue for the common voter. Their biggest concern is how to find the next meal. That is why Dudley who promised a free measure of rice to every person was able to come to power in 1965. That is why Mrs. Sirima Bandaranaike who promised people two measures of rice was able to come to power in 1970. And that is why JR who promised 8 pounds of grains won comfortably in 1977. At the elections that followed it was not food but the war that decided the victory or the defeat at national elections. Now again the major concern of the people is food as there is no war. Perhaps Venerable Sobhitha Thera and Dr. Kumar David are unable to fathom the struggle people wage daily to find some food for them and their children. One who is surrounded by delicacies is ignorant of the fangs of hunger of the person in the street.

As such it is naïve to believe that the President can be defeated on the sole pledge of abolishing the executive presidency. At the next election the President would not hesitate to promise voters  food at subsidized rates ,new welfare measures, and many more things as he knows more than anybody else that  the way to the heart begins from the stomach.

If the Opposition wants to defeat the incumbent President, first of all ,it has to find a candidate who can garner votes from all the ethnic communities in Sri Lanka. Second, the common candidate has to be a person who can attract one million votes from the SLFP bank. The votes of the SLFPers are decisive and indispensable for the victory of the common candidate because one vote for the common candidate is one vote less for the incumbent President. The third condition is, the opposition and the common candidate should say how they expect to attend to voters’ burning issues such as food , shelter and security within a brief period. The forth condition is a road map to restore democracy, rule of law, ethnic reconciliation human rights and media freedom by means of new constitution prepared by a national provisional government together with the newly elected President who will go home once the new constitution is adopted.

Therefore my strong conviction is that only Ms.Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumarathunga possesses qualifications that are necessary to defeat President Mahinda Rajapaksha. She is the only candidate who can open the SLFP vote bank and empty at least one quarter of it into her bag. The Tamils and the Muslims as well as non Buddhists in the country would be happier to vote her into power as she is neither a chauvinist nor a person who tolerates religious extremism.

Will she accept the challenge if the Opposition extends an invitation to her to contest as the common candidate against Mahinda who represents the political party which was founded by her father and Mahinda’s father?

And  she knows that the President is a resolute personality  who will fight to the bitter or sweet end no matter whatever the challenges.

It may well be the most difficult decision for madam Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumarathunga.

But I am positive of one thing. If she sees no guarantee of her victory she will be happier to remain at home rather than spend the rest of her life as a defeated candidate.

*P. Bertie Ranaweerage – Former president of Ceylon Teachers’ Union

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Latest comments

  • 7
    0

    This article describes Dayan Jayathilake quite accurately.

    “There is no doubt that Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka is looking forward to the victory of the incumbent President at the next election. What his many articles reveals is that he appreciates the way the President rules the country. Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka is probably not much worried about militarization, erosion of democracy, deterioration of rule of law and incessant violations of human rights”.

    However, promoting Chandrika Bandaranayake takes away the credibility of the Author since both the Rajapaksas and Bandaranayakes are responsible for the plight of this country.

    • 1
      0

      It is the EP made this country what it is today.

      Even if CBK would agree with people´s desire her would become the leader of the nation, Rev. Sobitha thero and peace loving anti hate speakers should make a promise to abolish EP within the first quarter or half of the tenure. That will then pave the way all srilankens to see beyond.

      I wish Rev. Sobitha would be the person to lead this nation – but many would not agree with that though.

      • 1
        0

        Dear P. Bertie Ranaweerage ,

        Thanks for writing the above article and exposing the unscrupulous characters here , however i don’t agree with your description/assertion of Prof Kumar David , prof KD is not a dodgy character like other pseudo intellectuals/writers , he is a genuine person with genuine ideas , he would never write article after article to score some brownie points or to mislead others ,yes your argument has some valid points and i’m sure prof KD will take it in right spirit , please don’t stop writing after this fabulous article ,now SL needs your type of people to wake sleeping populace up ,to face the ultimatum.

  • 2
    2

    There is much to consider in the Writer’s argument. CBK is certainly not the most ideal. Her past as President is not one that warrants her to be considered again. But we are in no way in a position to think of ideal positions or candidates. I agree of the names mentioned she may take the front position. If Ven. Sobita Thero can muster the support of the monks and the Sinhala extreme and the JVP bring in the half a million PVP-student votes and if Mangala S manages to bring in the UNP
    as a prop to support her candidature, at least, the Rajapakses can be shown the door – to the relief of much of the country. The liberal Chandrika has all the capabilities to unite the Sinhala and Tamils. She also has sufficient support among the Muslims to assure them a peaceful future. She will be acceptable to India – both South and North – as well as the international community.

    R. Varathan

    • 2
      0

      Please note that , CBK’s name has been cropped up due to various reasons and certainly not due to her efficiency or trustworthiness personality as some tries to portray , she happened to be the ONLY candidate who can beat the incumbent president and here are some obvious and not so obvious reasons why would every one back her candidacy.

      1)in SL presidential elections, race & religion take dominance more than anything else , hence if any candidate wants to be taken really seriously by the majority , he/she must fall in to the “Singhala buddist” mould, incidentally CBK happened to fit into that “sinhala buddisst ” mould perfectly , so she will pass her first ” singhala Buddist “mandatory hurdle without any trouble.
      2)in SL politics , generally speaking majority of voters are divided in two categories , they are UNP and SLFP/PA , if any candidate were to win over MR , He/she must be able to split SLFP/PA vote base in to half , only CBK can command such privilege and no one else can even dream of doing that sort of magic under MR rule , hence CBK will pass her 2nd hurdle of splitting the SLFP vote base .

      3)from the day of nomination up to the very last moment MR would unleash his well known gimmicks/intimidation /violence tactics etc through his trustworthy lieutenants and will run a mock before the whole world without any sense of shame or guilt as he is quite accustomed to it, who will be his trustworthy lieutenants and who can implement /unleash all the election violations throughout the country ,ofcourse they are none other than SLFP/PA power block (Parliament, PS MPs etc ) . all most all of the current SLFP/PA MPs and Ministers were one time CBK ‘s humble subordinates, given the current plight of delusional SLFPers state over the dominance familial rule , most of them would be reluctant to put their full weight behind the looming uncertainty , hence CBK will be in a better position to split the SLFP/PA power base in to two, hence she will pass her 3rd hurdle of splitting SLFP power base with some obvious difficulties.

      4)in SL majority of the population belongs to rural areas and wining or losing is purely based on these gullible voters , unfortunately or fortunately majority of those voters never bothered to think rationally or logically when it comes to electing /voting a president , rather they tend to use their heart over head in choosing the right candidate , who else can get the maximum advantage/benefit under the above mentioned vulnerable circumstance , yes again it’s CBK , CBK is one of the rarest personalities in SL politicks who can speak to hears & minds of rural folks with her charming ( constant chest thumping and promising sun and Moon) from dawn to dusk, thereby she can easily fool the gullible ( 70% of grass/betel eating) voters , now she will pass her most difficult 4th hurdle.

      5) in order to salvage CBK’s image from her past endless corruptions, scandals and habitual lying, Ven Sobitha Thero’s name annexation is a must , this is to cater for the group who use their heads when voting , obviously section of the voters would refrain from voting for CBK as she had let down the whole country by not adhering to her previous promise , nonetheless with the annexation of ven sobitha thero’s name would definitely bring some degree of confidence & trust among the skeptics, difficult but possible she can overcome the Trustworthiness hurdle as well.
      .

      7) IF UNP can come up as a single party and endorse CBK/Ven sobitha thero’s names as the CC, then all most all the UNP voters would support her (of course with the exception of small percentage of die hard UNP fanatics)
      Ps: Given the RW and Sajith’s double dipping hide & seek game , it’s very unlikely to happen.

      8)under the prevailing military dominance over Tamil people’s lives , it’s safe to assume that all the Tamil parties would extend their fullest support to get rid of MR to any one , hence CBK passes her hurdle of Tamil votes quite easily .

      9) Given the current Muslim people’s plight , most of Muslim voters would love to see the immediate exit of MR led administration , hence CBK will have overwhelming Muslim votes over MR , hence CBK will pass her muslim hurdle quite comfortably.

      10) Gen SF will support any one other than MR, so CBK to pass her Gen SF hurdle as well. ( quite decent vote base though )

      11) finally the JVP factor , with the Ven sobitha thero’s name annexation to CBK , JVP will be forced to back CBK as there will be no any other choice left for them , hopefully CBK can pass JVP hurdle as well.

      12) CBK will be internationally accepted as she is known to be non sinhala buddist extremist, hence she will pass her international hurdle quite comfortably.
      12) besides all the above mention factors/hurdles , CBK is the only candidate who can withstand barrage of mudslinging/accusations /insults 24×7 with matching responses , and it is also worth mentioning , would there be any eventuality with regard to releasing the final results or honoring the final verdict , as a two time veteran president , she enjoys an unprecedented advantage over logistical ,legal, ethical , social aspects of the situation in handling at locally as well as internationally towards her favour . so there you are , in all most all counts she comes up with flying colours over any other potential candidate.

      PS : nobody should take any notice of DJ’s gibberish , he is just another mouth piece for MR just like Dr Mervin and Wimal aka Modawansa.

      • 2
        0

        Srilal, thanks. I dont think anyone could add it better :) Bravo….. bravo..

        I have no doubt, that many would support CBK as common candidate even if they did not like her politics in her previous terms only for one reason that today´s corruption levels are quiet higher than any times in the lanken history. Annexation of Rev. Sobitha will be connected with abolishing EP within the first few months. My question whether UNP reformists would ever support CBK even if JVP would do ?

      • 2
        0

        Many will agree with you than with DJ on this forum. No doubt about that. So please add your valuable comments again and again. Dont let these buggers to intimidate you. Jaya niyathai.

        • 2
          0

          Cheers Soma , appreciate your comments !
          we all must wish for a violence free end to this mayhem and a quick recovery .

          As for DJ , this gentleman Bertie Ranaweerage quite rightly exposed DJ’s true intentions , basically we have had enough of DJ’s selfish , opportunistic ” Pora talk” here , DJ has been just wasting his time trying to be another mouth piece for MR , i’m sure even DJ doesn’t believe in any of his writing, isn’t it pity that this man had to sell his sole to fulfill his ego !

  • 3
    1

    A cogent and logical thesis. However, the Achilles Heel of the argument is identified by Patriot. Also, apart from the political history of the Bandaranaikes and Rajapaksas in relation to Sri Lanka, can Chandrika Bandaranaike convince voters that she will not repeat her performance as President of Sri Lanka when she served in that position?

    • 3
      0

      She was democratic. And she should have learnt from her previous terms.

      So people will have no other choice than driving away the thug and save the nation.

      That is simple as that.

  • 0
    0

    I was intrigued by the beginning, ‘I too wish to join this competition though I do not hope to win a prize’, of Bertie Ranaweerage. Why would he enter the competition without at least a minimal desire to win?

    Now that BR has submitted his script, it has to be marked.

    1.a) There is no doubt that Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka is looking forward to the victory of the incumbent President at the next election – Full mark.

    1.b) Dayan Jayatilleka is probably not worried about militarization, erosion of democracy, deterioration of rule of law and violations of human rights – Bonus mark.

    1.c) DJ wants to prevent the possible support of the JVP for the common candidate that has the ability to defeat the incumbent President – Extra Bonus.

    With such high marks from the word go, why would BR begin the way he did. Was it a deceptive attempt to score sympathy marks … .

    No. His inconclusive ending that unless Chandrika sees a guarantee of a victory she will remain at home, he was right. He had no chance to win!

  • 1
    3

    very good article,though i think he should have given his hought on ranil and sajit,the candidates from the main opposition party and most important of all Fonseka.I feel it is a toss up between CBk and Fonseka.

    He is quite right that Chandrika will back off if she is not sure of victory because too much will be at stake for her.If she does back off then Fonseka is the best bet and he is steadily rising now that he seems to have better control of his mouth.

    The point about the hunger pangs is a good one.Now that the war is over,as the writer pointed out it is back to the need to put food on the table,get medical,send children for a good education,get jobs to earn a living,live without fear of criminals etc.In other words back to basics of a developing country.After all cannot eat Roads, ports and airports.So if it is CBK or fonseka or ranil better to prepare policies to fulfill those needs and put it before the people,because that may be the crucial factor that could decide the vote.Also an anti corruption crusade and development with transparency and no commissions like modi did will also with the welfare schemes be like bread with butter.

  • 1
    0

    So ‘patriot’, who is your choice as the common candidate?

    I do agree with you ‘patriot’ that this author probably describes the motives of Dayan rather accurately!

  • 5
    2

    Mr.Bertie Ranaweerage,

    First of all we CT readers thank you Mt.Bertie Ranaweerage for coming on board to CT as a honest reporter and a writer.

    Many writers to CT like DJ,Kusal P,Malinda etc, are either blind educated idiots or simply have their under hand personal political agendas to help dictators to stay in power.

    Dr.Dayan’s leniency and a complete U turn towards Pres. Rajapakse started just three days before March UNHRC resolution when he met MR at Temple Trees. Surely he would have served another cup of Black Coffee with or without sugar, and then he changed completely.

    But we the CT readers are not served either Duty free car permits or free Laptops or free white van rides.

    That’s why you see CT readers are more Knowledgeble, critical thinkers and great analysts, and they recommended Madam Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge as their best choice for next common Presidential candidate.

    Also if Mr.Bertie Ranaweerage could remember and analyse how and what contributed for MR to win and Gen.SF to loose last presidential elections, there were many reasons for it.

    The very first reason was MR used and exploited 18th Amendment to the maximum to win last Presidential elections.That was and is his Trump card to stay in power.

    With 18th Amd. in hand MR used and dictated the Judiciary, police dept, election commissioneer, bribery commissioneer, all forces, created an unofficial police with using party thugs and criminals, all Media, Journalists, reporters, TV, Radio and press, all Divineguma Receipients, all Tharunayata Hetak and Nil Balakaya youth force, used all Govt.Transpot board and other vehicles, etc,etc,

    Also MR gave them Bribes, promotions, bank loans etc,etc.to lure them to vote for him.

    Also MR gave employment to over 150,000 party goons and to their relatives just two months before elections to get their vote.

    Also MR opened Banks and gave easy loans to Farmers,to self employed and many others to lure them to his side.

    MR opened his Araliya Gaha medura to everybody giving them enough and more Dana,food and drinks 24 hours which were catered by Five star hotels.

    He also called many Sri Lankan Diplomatic and Foreign Ministry staff to serve him during the election campaign.

    Also MR kept Election commissioneer under house arrest during the Votes were counted. Many media reports were published on this matter. With 18th Amendment powers in hand, MR kept the election commissioneer like a mere Puppet in a cage.

    Also MR kept Gen.SF under house arrest at Hotle Cinamon Grand Lakeside until the final results were published and then left him with no body guards to protect him.

    Also it was the first time we herd about “Computer Gilmart” in our election history.

    Also since MR is the Finance Minister, until now nobody knows how many Billions of Rupees and other Assets he spent for the last Presidential elections. MR would have easily spent over a Billion Rupees just for the Posters and cutouts alone, leave alone other TV,Radio and press advertisements.

    Also three months after elections still there were ballot papers that were marked for Gen.SF were found in wells,road side, school yards and at counting center dust bins.

    Soon after elections MR Jailed Gen.SF on fraudulent charges just because he challenged him.

    Therefore these are very few out of other hundreds of unherd tricks that MR used to win Presidential elections.

    Therefore my conclution is If anybody including Madam CBK planning on coming as a common Presidential candidate to challenge MR, she should be able to face all of these and many more or other Thuggery and intimidations to face if she plans to appear as a common candidate.

    She should be able to overcome all of these hurdles, as now elections in Sri Lanka is no more like the elections in India. There’s no computer gilmart there, and the election commissioner, police, media and the judiciary are independent, where Sri Lanka thay are not.

    Finally MR/Gota/Bara/Chama will go even upto eating pig shit to stay in power, and that’s their nature.So just imagine who you fight with.

    Finally Madam CBK should get back her father’s party from the great Alibabas and should save Sri Lanka becomming another Pariah state.

    Getting rid of 18th Amendment and calling for International inspectors to supervise polls a must for who ever plans to come as common candidate for the next Presidential elections.

    Finally every opposition party should unite and should give their fullest support and backing to the common candidate if they plan to topple the greatest Alibabas the Rajapakse Family Ologarch, and to rescue our country.

    Oterwise by promoting mere selfish single party agendas,and with individual goals and objectives, Sinhalayas will be eternally Modayas.

    Welcome on board Mr.Bertie Ranaweerage.

    We need more of Tisaranee Gunasekara type visioneers and writers and you could be one of them.

    Good luck

    • 0
      0

      Lasantha,

      A correction: The 18th amendment came after MR won his second term.

      Dr.RN

      • 2
        0

        Dr. Rajasingham,

        Yes MR officially got the 18th Amendment passed in October 2010 which was after the Presidential elections in a hurry.

        http://kafila.org/2010/10/06/sri-lankas-18th-amendment-a-charter-for-dictatorship-rohini-hensman/

        But during the Presidential elections MR behaved like as if he has all the powers of 18th Amendment to do whatever he wants.
        MR virtually kept Election commissioner under house arrest during the counting of Ballot papers and EC admitted he was just a lame duck.

        There was not much difference, except after the 18th Amendment MR got CJ Shirani Bandaranayake kicked out and took over 85 Billion rupee Divi Neguma fund under his brother Basil Rajapakse.

        Thuggery still continues.

  • 5
    1

    Very good analysis by the writer. As he says Dayan Jayathilaka is not worried about the Executive Presidency and the present economic situation and the division among Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims, but his main aim is how hecan get another Diplomatic appointment as he knows the taste of the perks attached to the post. As Birty says knowing JVP is not the favourite party to win the Presidential election even though KAD is the Leader, he is trying the old tric to keep JVP supporting any other candidate if he/she is from a political party.
    Rev Sobitha may be a good candidate like CM Wigneswaran, but Sri Lankan are so democratic to consider the best they can do without thinking on ethnic lines. Skeletons may pop up for any Common Candidate as Rajapaksa will used the State machinery to beat the others. But former President Chandrika Kumaratunga as the writer says will be able to break Rajapaksa’s hold on the SLFP and many old SLFP Ministers and MP’s now fed up with Rajapaksa’s step motherly treatment may join her leaving a very strong vacuumed for Rajapaksa to fill. If she gets the UNP and DP support most Ministers now with Rajapaksa will go back to the fold of UNP as they still serve the UNP agenda while enjoying all the Perks as Ministers.
    If Mrs. Kumaratunga is going to be the common candidate, she should get all his former Advisers and Secrataries at arms length, and get the best she can trust to do away with the present lawlessness in the country. One thing she can do is to offer forme Army Commander a ver important role in her Cabinet to bring Law & Order back to the country as well as the Tri-service.

    • 5
      0

      Bill clinton reiterated, CBK is a very good leader. World leaders respected her than they do towards MR. MR is simply thuggish and many dont want thugs to represent them. Many that stay in silent mode will raise their voices soon. Jaya niyathai. CBK will be the winner.

  • 4
    0

    Surely a subject which all like minded Sri Lankans should be considering seriously.

    In my opinion I don’t agree with following sentences

    “He knows very well that Mr. Anura Kumara Dissanayake whom he proposed as the common candidate is a lame horse in a Presidential election race”

    The reason why “Dr. DJ” proposed the name of Mr. Anura Kumara Dissanayake is speculation.

    What we have to consider is the reason for a common candidate has arise due to necessity as we all know the opposition(s) are weak and no single party can pose any serious challenge to incumbent president.

    Even Mr. Wigneswaran is a good reasonable good candidate, but we all know it will not fly with the majority community our voters are not in such an advance state. For that matter if Mr. Lakshman Kadirgamar was around he would have convinced more Lankans, Mr. Wigneswaran is new to politics and his domain is limited to North.

    Going back to AKD, the whole purpose of a common candidate is to unify the voters against the incumbent president which would require all other major political parties to unanimously back the one common candidate. Being a one from the majority community half the battle is already won.

    If all parties can agree with clear mandate and policy frame work how a common president will function, I am confident out of all available candidates Mr. Anura Kumara Dissanayake is the best possible option.

  • 2
    8

    I am afraid the writer has deliberately suppressed and thereby gravely distorted my views. Worse still, it has made him go completely off course in endless speculation as to my motivation, instead of dealing with my actual and well known stand.

    Anyone who has read me on this website and in the newspapers and watched me on TV know that I have a very simple preference, which I have openly and consistently stated and argued for, when it comes to the choice of an opposition candidate.

    1. I AM HAVE ALWAYS BEEN OPPOSED TO RANIL WICKREMESINGHE AS UNP CANDIDATE.

    2. I HAVE BEEN, AT LEAST SINCE 2011 (PLEASE READ MY ARTICLES IN THE SUNDAY LEADER ETC AT THE TIME)FOR SAJITH PREMADASA AS UNP CANDIDATE. THAT REMAINS MY FIRST PREFERENCE.

    3. UNTIL HIS BREAKUP WITH SAJITH AND HIS CROSSOVER TO THE RANIL CAMP I HAVE ALSO BEEN SYMPATHETIC TO KARU JAYASURIYA AS A UNP CANDIDATE. EVEN NOW, IF SAJITH ACCEPTS TO BE KARU’S DESIGNATED NO 2 AS PM AND SUCCESSOR, I WOULD REGARD A KARU-SAJITH ‘ TICKET’ AND A KARU CANDIDACY FAVORABLY.

    4. ANY OBJECTIVE STATISTICAL ANALYSIS WOULD SHOW THAT SAJITH WOULD GET MOST OF THE UNP VOTES AND THEREBY TURN THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE INTO A FAIRLY CLOSE COMPETITION. THIS HE HAS PROVED BY FACING THE RAJAPAKSAS IN THEIR OWN TERRITORY FOR 14 YEARS AND ESPECIALLY BY THE PERFORMANCE IN TISSAMAHARAMA THIS YEAR.

    5. GIVEN THAT SAJITH IS THE BEST COMPETITOR AGAINST MR BECAUSE HE WOULD GET THE MOST VOTES, MY ADVOCACY OF HIS CANDIDACY IS THE EXACT OPPOSITE OF UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT FOR MR. I AM SUPPORTING THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN MINIMIZE MR’S MARGIN OF VICTORY AND GIVE HOPE TO THE OPPOSITION. THOSE WHO OPPOSE OR FAIL TO SUPPORT SAJITH’S CANDIDACY AND LEADERSHIP OF THE UNP ARE PRECISELY THOSE WHO ARE PROPPING UP MR.

    6. IN THE EVENT THAT SAJITH IS NOT THE UNP CANDIDATE, I BELIEVE THAT ANURA KUMARA WOULD BE THE BEST COMMON CANDIDATE. EVEN IF HE IS NOT A COMMON CANDIDATE I BELIEVE THAT THE OPPOSITION VOTERS SHOULD OPT FOR HIM.

    7. EVEN IF SAJITH IS THE UNP CANDIDATE, I AM FOR AN ANURA KUMARA CANDIDACY AS THE LEFT OPTION, BECAUSE ONE MUST THINK OF BUILDING UP A LEFT SECULAR ALTERNATIVE IN THE COUNTRY UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES. THERE SHOULD BE A LEFT FRONT IN SUPPORT OF HIS CANDIDACY. I SUPPORTED WIJEWEERA’S CANDIDACY IN 1982 FOR THE SAME REASON (WHILE CRITICIZING HIS DUPLICITY ON THE TAMIL ISSUE).

    8. IF HOWEVER, RANIL OR CBK WERE THE OPPOSITION’S CHOICE, I WOULD DEFINITELY SUPPORT MR. IT IS ONLY IF SAJITH OR ANURA KUMARA WERE THE OPPONENT THAT I WOULD NOT DO SO.

    9. I WOULD HAVE TO THINK ABOUT SUPPORTING A SARATH FONSEKA CANDIDACY. I RESPECT HIM BUT PROBABLY WOULD NOT PREFER HIM AS PRESIDENT, TO MR. IN ANY CASE, THIS SUPREME COURT WILL PROBABLY DECLARE HIS CANDIDACY ILLEGAL AT THE LAST MOMENT, THEREBY UPSETTING THE OPPOSITION CAMPAIGN!

    10. BOTTOM LINE: I WOULD SUPPORT A STRONG PATRIOTIC CANDIDATE. I’D PREFER THE SMART MODERN PATRIOTISM OF A SAJITH OR ANURA KUMARA TO THE OLD STYE NATIONALIST POPULISM OF MR. IF IT IS KARU OR SF I’LL HAVE TO THINK IT OVER. IF IT IS KARU-SAJITH, I’LL HAVE TO THINK IT OVER A BIT BUT WILL (PROBABLY) WIND UP SUPPORTING THEM. BUT IF THE OPPOSITION CANDIDATE IS NOT A STRONG PATRIOTIC FIGURE AND IS INSTEAD ONE OF THE PRE-WAR FIGURES WHO FAILED WHERE MAHINDA SUCCEEDED, I’LL STAY WITH MR– AS WILL MOST OF THE COUNTRY.

    Plain and clear, I hope?

    • 4
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      Dr Dayan Jayatilleka,

      First of all unless you look into all events that took place during last Presidential elections, and find remedies to them, how much ever common opposition candidates you propose will never be able to win elections.

      At the moment Sri Lanka is heading towards a Militarised state where the Military apparature in disguise of urban development authority is taking over the country.

      Also Sinhala Buddhist extrimist group called BBS is luring 70% Sinhala Buddhist votes to it’s side and will help any candidate who fulfills their obligations.

      With extra ordinary powers of 18th Amendment in place, it is a joke for any single party candidate to win Pres.elections.

      Over 3,000 election related incidents took place during 2010 Presidential elections none of them were inquired upto date.

      https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2010/01/slel-j06.html
      http://www.caffesrilanka.org/more-4a-8610-2.html
      http://lankasocialist.com/mar05_2010_innsig.aspx

      Therefore my conclusion is before any Presidential elections, this peoples enemy draconian 18th Amendment should be abolished and free and fair elections should be held.

      My final conclusion is, at the moment Sri Lanka needs support from all political parties and also support from the International community to unite the country and govern and direct it with clear goals in mind, with disciplene,honestly and in a Transparent manner.

      At the moment no single party is capable on achieving all these requirements single handadly.

    • 5
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      Dear DJ,
      dont become a joker to this or other forum.

      You could better support CBK and bring to power. That can gurantee you a good position in External affairs – which I think is the only motive of your writings (simply selfish agendas). This became even clearer to me by closly studying your recent ariticles which took the inconsistent style than had been a year ago so.

      You are the number selfish person we learnt in today´s sport light. You would never be able to get a position from MR and the like thugs so long they are in power. JVPrs would just respect you for to have defended the country in 2009, but they also should have studied your maligannt behaviours being stuck to MR regime.

    • 4
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      So how would you explain the people that would raise the question – whether the sajith profile is good enough to lead a nation whose literacy rate is known to be that of singpore.

      What are the difference between Sajith and MR policies ?

      • 1
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        Best would be as always he would stay mum as if a crocodile is fed with [Edited out].

        We know this guy for such a long time. Whatever his [Edited out] has been saying, he has no geunie feeling towards the nation. Nor has he got any sadness the way that MR regime looted the country to the manner as no other leader did sofar. Telling something palatable and doing the other way around has been the nature of MR. He speaks a lot …. praises the folks licking and cuddling babies, but not allowing those poor people to feed their young ones well – today the situation for his men that earn millions through contracts without tenders – life has been better, but for the masses that live up under poverty – it has been a hell out of situation. [Edited out] has no hearts to get it correct. Nor have the cabinet of current day done it sofar. Enough is enough. We must turn this sitaution to an arab spring to feel us the nation atleast somewhat comfort.

    • 3
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      So long srilanka´s modi in power, IC would work against us.

      ONLY RW, CBK or any other good educated one can bring the unity between IC and Srilanka.

  • 1
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    Ok, to put it at its simplest:

    If it Sajith or Anura Kumara vs MR, I’ll definitely support whichever the former is the candidate, not the incumbent.

    If it is Ranil or CBK vs MR , I’ll definitely support MR.

    If it is SF, I’ll probably be neutral.

    If it is Karu supported by Sajith, I’ll think about it and may wind up supporting Karu.

    • 3
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      No matter you would support to any of the above candidates, people, particularly ones have studied yours one that have read your articles have in recent months have already branded you as the level even lowering to that of Kelaniya Mervin the vermin.
      So, please no need to feel that your actions could trigger any changes of the election outcome.

      Those who would support CBK will support, UNP, JVP and DP.

      All they want is to remove MR from their sights. Enough is enough.

    • 2
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      Dayan we want know why you hate Chandrika and Ranil. I feel beacause both of them are not racists and decent. You prefer a kanukata, is it because of the cast? I feel you and premadasa from same cast:)

  • 2
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    Firstly,people should have the ability to vote without thuggery,intimidation,cutouts,processions,assaults and even murders.
    The voting should be by an electronic system to prevent fraudulent manipulation during counting.
    This is the vogue now in many countries.
    All election laws must be implemented.

    There is great reluctance to do all this,not only by the government,but also by opposition parties.

    Noone appears to want a strong Election Commission – like in India which has recently concluded the biggest election in the free world – without complaints of malpractices.

    Without all this,discussing possible candidates is useless and absurd,and even hypocritical.

    So far,we have NEVER had a completely unflawed election.

    In some countries,even election expenses by candidates are controlled and limited.
    In sri lanka,noone can contest if he/she does mot have many millions to spend.

  • 0
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    My only wish is for all these “Pandiths” to refrain from “Proposing” who the best “Common candidate” to challenge the present incumbent MR.

    Let anyone with a strong “Political Party” prove to the voters that he/she is the one and the only alternative to MR and the UPLF. The need of the hour is a “strong” leader who is “committed” to good Governance of all matters of the affairs of Government. He/SHE must be a selfless candidate with strong and workable policies of a Political Party or of an “Alliance” with a common agenda agreed to put into operation during the tenure of Governance. The country is fed up with “Individual Chinthanayas” that have been presented like a “sugar coated bitter pill”. What we need is a Leader and a Political Party that could well understand and recognize “OUR WISH AND VISION” and manage our affairs with the highest level of integrity.

    • 0
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      Douglas,
      Javaharlal Neru is on the way. Could you pick him up from the Mattala air port ? Hope he is not coming too early for the elections.

  • 0
    0

    Lalith: Thank you. Whatever the date and time “HE” comes,even after the elections, I am ready to pick him, because I always wait for the future. Not at all difficult, I am living so close by. Let me know. Thanks again.

  • 0
    4

    Dear Birty,

    What can we expect from Chandrika again.
    Do we want to change Mahinda only.
    No we need a good governance to this country.
    If the common candidate is Chandrika many opposition voters will deffinetly vote for Mahinda.

    Accually Mahinda is better than Chandrika.

    • 3
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      John I’m totally disagreed with you.

      • 4
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        People like Johns are stupid by birth. There we cant do anything. So the others have to pay it so long this kind of people are there. What matters is the percentage of this kind of people. Are they the majority, no doubt MR will govern the nation and loot everyone in the years to come.
        But I do believe, CBK could handle issues better in terms of IC and the related, …. she should have learnt from her previous two terms. And those who supported her then would have helped her by every means to face it better this time.
        All what we want is a leader who would respect justice and dignity of life.

    • 3
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      Chandrika is more democratic for almost everyone. That alones decides that she should be the candidate for PE.

      In no war situation, Chandrika will have all powers to restore peace to this nation driving away all radical sinhalese that rally round MR thuggery these days.
      UNP will support Chandrika – that will be for sure.

    • 1
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      what can we expect from MR other than making and paving all ways his relatives to abuse people´s funds.
      Just because CBK administration was accusing him to have abused Tsunami funds, the bugger has applied all hatreds towards CBK. But not knowing that there are enough guys within PA that would go on supporting her.
      These are the vision of Raja – that seem to be not seeing beyond their noses.
      Now with all arragements making UNO to involve in lanken issues, the bugger stays mum not being able to face it. Like or not, UN will involve in lanken internal issues so long MR´s human rights violations are on a rise. RW and CBK or any other leader should mediate here to save the country being accessed to any foreign invasions.

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