3 July, 2022


Presidential Poll And The Danger Of Being A Gentleman

By S. Sivathasan

S. Sivathasan

S. Sivathasan

People’s Power, Good Governance and the Opposition’s Target in Proper Balance

If the announcement of Presidential election ignited the fire for regime change, the next one month will fan the flame. In the first fortnight it will reach a crescendo and never diminish in the next. In the fever heat of the baptism of fire, a new political order wished for and prayed about can emerge. It is anticipated that the resounding will of the people and the decisive force of the international community will help bring it about. The forces that labored for the protection of the good, the destruction of evil and for the establishment of righteousness are coalescing into a single entity. With this hope, the vote that tilts will be for the opposition’s common candidate Maithripala Sirisena.

Social Contract

If Rousseau in his mature years of wisdom were to live in Sri Lanka now, what will he say? Citizens born free and wanting to be free, are found everywhere in chains. Even to the convinced and the converted he will belabor his theory that only with the consent of the people can a ruler rule. Implicit in the thesis is the exhortation to overthrow the regime when consent is lost. At this precise point of time duty and responsibility command the people of Sri Lanka to perform a sacred task – to engage their sovereign right to reinstate democratic governance. Responding to the call, they are poised to overwhelm the might of the state with the power of the ballot.

“Emerging Alternative President of Sri Lanka”

Maithri newThe above sub heading, the caption of an article of July 26, 2014 has evolved into reality by December 8.

“Rarely in history do we see leaders of various hues seeking to fuse together for a singular purpose. Rarer still is for a very wide political spectrum to secure a Presidency through a consensus candidate only to terminate it”, the writer had said. Why this determined bid? Because the body politic has become terminally cancerous under a malevolent dictatorship of the incumbent President. So passionate is the peoples’ urge to abolish the Presidency and to transit to civilised times. Unity, politically and ethnically is today a rare first, to effect a regime change, to cleanse the body politic and to institute a new order.

In that article the writer concluded, “Concerted and tireless action can give it momentum. If the emerging leadership plays its cards well, the incumbent regime will tremble at the impending upsurge”. As the country can see, adroit play is at hand. Tremors are already felt and a political Tsunami in the offing is perceived. What is now a subterranean surge will soon be a visible upsurge. The landfall will get recorded on January 8.

Karu Jayasuriya

One among the senior ranks of the country’s political leadership and one of those few seriously considered for Opposition Presidential candidacy made a very sober assessment of the elections. He also spoke of the merits on which the opposition candidate scores. In contrast was the execrable maladministration of the incumbent President. In his extensive and intensive interaction with the people his sense tells him intuitively of the massive groundswell for the common candidate.

Mr. Jayasuriya highlighted the groundwork done in the last three years, to take off once people’s power vests authority in their hands. He referred to the labours of economists, administrators, lawyers, engineers, patriots and politicians and blueprints are at hand for a new political and social order. The task of the new regime is to cleanse the land of its evil debris. First 100 days will be devoted to abolish the Executive Presidency. Comprehensive reordering of the state apparatus will follow. He asserted that Maithripala Sirisena with clean hands and amiable ways enjoys the confidence of all parties.

Repugnance of the Current Regime

The current regime purports to owe its legitimacy to a facilely written Mahinda ChinthanaCopious excerpts are placidly quoted from this VEDA. They have as much sanctity as Stalin Chinthana with cheering retinues at the ready to chant its magnificence. I wonder how many of the 60,000 officers at senior management level, perused or analysed the investment magnitudes, leave aside strategies for sourcing funds. Little wonder, Public Debt in 2013 stood at Rs 6.793 trillion. It was Rs 2.233 trillion in 2005. To view in perspective a comparison is helpful. While Malaysia’s Public Debt in 2013 was 54.6% of GDP, Sri Lanka’s was 78.5%.


In sourcing foreign funds and in the management thereof, what was the pattern between the two regimes in 20 years – 1994 end to 2014 end?

China’s Preponderant Footprint

Sri Lanka’s foreign policy has underpinnings in Aid, Trade, Investment Flows and security. Vice Versa is true as well. In 1956, Ceylon’s foreign relations changed with SWRD’s policy of dynamic neutralism. A balance was brought about from a heavy western orientation. The nation benefited from this new equilibrium. A chequered history followed in the next half a century.

In all four segments referred to above, the world order has changed profoundly. The country however has not marched in step. Over abundant trust and hope in a single country China, with a seeming unconcern about the nation’s security considerations has been irksome to the enlightened segments of society. What they want very much is a reversal of policy and a fresh balance, among all major players: Japan, China, Australia; Russia, EU Nations; US, Canada and Brazil

The changed regime with a new President, supported by stalwarts among others by Chandrika, a former President and Ranil, a former Prime Minister will bring a refreshing ethos to governance. The former is the authentic voice of SLFP and the latter the longstanding leader of UNP. People look forward to domestic policy and foreign policy buttressing and cross fertilizing one another.

In foreign aid disbursement, who ranked first for SL in 2005? Japan at $ 238.4 Mn, US at $ 17 Mn and China at $ 10.2 Mn.  Now it is China whose commitments of development assistance had risen to 38% of all foreign assistance in 2011. It was 3% in 2003. In the last three years inflows and pledges have grown exponentially. “Global and regional strategic reasoning behind Chinese development assistance is oftentimes undeniable”; Thus points out International Alert. It also makes bold to assert that this is “Building political capital in Sri Lanka”.

Fearful Four Weeks till Mid-January 2015

The incumbent President is skating furiously and wrecklessly on thin ice. Thickness reduced and security impaired by his own fault ridden policies and actions. There is little solace to the people when the opposition is attacked or the minorities are persecuted. In a state of siege he will take the country into icy cold depths together with his family and cohorts.

The prospects in the next 4 weeks are disquieting to the nation’s polity. It places all its bets on regime change which itself rests on a single pivot of a Free and Fair Presidential Election. When that itself is threatened by the Power that be, the people can but look plaintively at neighbours far and near. In desperation they glance to the North, to the East and to the West.

“Stakes are high; therefore the incumbent regime will employ all and every means, not to mention extra-parliamentary measures to retain power’, is a view held widely by the intelligentsia and endorsed universally by the generality. Why won’t they, having gone through the rigours of violence at all elections, Provincial, General and Presidential for nine miserable years? They have already had a continuing foretaste of the coming one.

Signals of dire danger are real but lost, when the warnings are couched in diplomatic language or gentlemanly words. Harold Laski’s stance it appears is that there is danger in being a gentleman.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 4

    If MaRa looses, then GoRa has no choice but to take over the nation with the help of military.


    • 5

      over the nation with the help of military.””

      You would be Goo`ts `Boo`ts holdall??

      Is that where your imagination can take you??


    • 1

      I sincerely hope so for the sake of our 70% Dalit inhabitants…

      • 2

        K.A Sumanasekera

        “I sincerely hope so for the sake of our 70% Dalit inhabitants… “

        So you can spit and polish the great dictator’s dirty pair of shoes. I am happy that you will have a job.

  • 5

    “A balance was brought about from a heavy western orientation. “”The nation benefited from this new equilibrium.””

    Is it ignorance of sarcasm or have you gone over the moon with sihala acharu ika’s lilliputs a la Londres??

    Nation’s exports are still to west as an agricultural island and the rest of resourcing is western oriented- Though lankian looked east you were blind that China looked east too in awe and hungry for WTO like Russia which inevitably opened FDI from similar cultures living across the borders in heaves and bounds and continues o do so even today.
    Guju is trying hard selfishly for its ethnicity only and using the rest of that continent as scape goats- Guju only buy and sell and hire work feudal style still. They with British passports were driven away hard from Uganda and Kenya because they just sit on the money box and move goal posts.(Your Tamils are following the same principal because they have no leader who listens to the simple retailer requesting for a bank to start with)

    Let the minorities decide and even the majority for that matter- All have a gut feeling which is better than pills from government servants and politicos.

    Lets see if he quits in 100 days – without prejudice to challenge his stay further than 100 days with a 10 member jury of common citizens please a note from him

  • 2


    Hope that better sense prevails.

  • 1

    There is no doubt, there will be Free and Fair Election under President Mahinda R… He believed that People’ Power and Ballot more than MS and Group of Opposition political parties an alliances.

    The Political Track record of UNP Rani.W…. (1977 to 1994) and CBK 1994 to 2004,which Right to Vote that time to time had been undermine by ruling democracies Governances were in power.

    An opposition leaders like Ranil.W and CBK has been join by MS new statement is more dangerous trend than past.

    Leader of Presidential candidate of MS has made statement ,that given green lights post-election will go the through Mass Protest Movement that led by Opposition parties against Legally elected President of Sri Lanka post-election 2015 Jan…

    Why is the meaning of that MS and clique advocated, why is that such anti-People and anti-democratic policies during his election campaign and Public meetings advocated by MS?

    Call public to being in the Street by MS. Is that new type of Spring similar to Arabs Countries? By mean is principally violation of People Democracy by MS & clique?

    MS is oblivious mean that his statement to be realized M.SIRISENA no longer trust people and not accepts that his defeated by People verdict 2015 Jan?

    What IS obsequiously to the democracy by which is MS desperate attempted destructible to the democracy norms denied by evil elements led by MS & clique.

    This is serious offence by and large that by MS and party, which NOT GOING RESPECT AND ACCEPCT PEOPLE VERDIT IN 2015 JUN 08. MS an openly call for REVOLT AGAINST DEMOCRAY DECISION OF PEOPLE POWER.

    How can, that MS and clique be a democratic nation political alliances ?

  • 3

    “”Signals of dire danger are real but lost, when the warnings are couched in diplomatic language or gentlemanly words. Harold Laski’s stance it appears is that there is danger in being a gentleman.””

    “Street Legal”
    Senor (Tales Of Yankee Power)”
    Senor, senor, can you tell me where we’re headin ?
    Lincoln County Road or Armageddon ?
    Seems like I been down this way before
    Is there any truth in that, senor ?

    Senor, senor, do you know where she is hidin’ ?
    How long are we gonna be riding ?
    How long must I keep my eyes glued to the door ?
    Will there be any comfort there senor ?


    Senor, take this badge off of me
    I can’t use it anymore.
    It’s gettin’ dark, too dark to see
    I feel I’m knockin’ on heaven’s door.

    Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door
    Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door
    Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door
    Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door

    Senor, put my guns in the ground
    I can’t shoot them anymore.
    That long black cloud is comin’ down
    I feel I’m knockin’ on heaven’s door.

    Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door
    Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door
    Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door
    Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door


  • 2

    Have Ranil and cousin CBK given our Dalits good governance and corruption free development ,let alone development…

    Who is the Dude who said “History Repeats.”…

  • 3

    Already with the help of the Navy, ballot papers are printed to be used fraudulently at the elections.I hope the opposition has the means and ways to block this kind of fraud.The military has the history of blocking the traffic of voters in certain constituencies who are likely to vote for the opposition. What kind of protection can the opposition deploy against these manouvres.This island will see only blood and tears if fraudulence wins over fairness.

  • 2

    I used to call this guy “chunky” in somewhat of an endearing fashion. Now, the guy is beginning to use big words such as “Righteous” and “Gentleman”. Those words aren’t suitable for people of your ilk. Please stop or I will throw up!

    Therefore I shall revert to calling him “Mola” better yet, “Gon Mola”.

    Gon Mola here needs to get a few things straight first. Where is the show of remorse for getting your history wrong? I mean, the violence, the unbelievable waste of our time and resources, the ethnic cleansing of Sinhala from their homelands in the NE etc.

    Need to get the fundamentals right first. There must be some form of apology with compensation are in order first I believe. Tamils like you must pay for the damages first don’t you think so?

  • 3

    Sri Lanka has become North Korea. The Kim Jong dynasty rules and ruins North Korea. After Kim Jong Mahinda completes his rule in 2023, Kim Jing Basil will rule until 2035 and then Kim Jong Namal will rule until 2053. This is a national curse.

  • 0


    You predicted the outcome of the last Indian election precisely. what’s your prediction for this election?

    • 5

      Hindia never changed it will take a beating before it can ever think of.
      the voting was all remote controlled from Gujarati Diaspora USA.
      Modi is like the legendary Hamster taking all the food to its place- Diamond industry, High Tech when other states are more advanced not just south but north too.

      He tried to hoodwink the west with his world wind and now he has gone back to Cold War Days.- He is like Rajapassa the unedeucated moron!
      his government wont last like the former started by Moraji.

      U.S. upset at India-Russia deals
      “India has refused to join western sanctions over Russia’s actions in Crimea, and the joint statement issued by President Putin and PM Modi said “India and Russia oppose economic sanctions that do not have the approval of the United Nations Security Council.”


      I expect the same in SL a disaster if not conceived by the voting public than being manoeuvred by politicians of all hues- we all have gut feeling which is stronger than any preacher.

  • 4

    Real Peace

    Since you are curious to know let me reveal the truth. I knew for a certainty that predicting to the last digit is possible. Specifically for India, needed are the following three:

    1 Study and analysis of earlier Lok Sabha election results extensively 1947 – 2009. Intensively 1977 – 2009. Both spread over 6 months.

    2 One should be absolutely dispassionate.

    3 A little bit of intuitive judgement.

    My prediction was earliest and closest at 280. Actual was 282. Lack of properly structured statistics in the public domain explains the difference of 2.

    For US Presidential 2012, my prediction made about 4 weeks earlier was correct for all 50 states and for US to the last digit for D & R.

    Study was for 3 months.

    As for SL, results are not predictable because of the numerous imponderables. I have not seriously attempted after 1982.

  • 3

    Good analysis by Karu J, who is a gentlman politician and glad MS is like minded personality. The public is awaiting for “good governance” and a great opportunity again to achieve same. The public is responding very enthusiastically towards same. Of course, they would have to face many impediments, dangers in the process but at the end if they establish good governance they would recognised as great leaders in thebhistory of Srilanka.

    The ones who are changing colours for money would only end up in the Hell and the wealth they had collected would not be able save them.

  • 0

    The writer is Tamil communalist which origin of Separatism, that politically advocated by political-economy order of Capitalism has been wrongly misdigonaist causes of world economy.

    The principally flaw in the Post-Bretton Woods International Monetary system led by US EU & Japan is its inability and incompetent to prevent large-scale Economies of Investment and Trade imbalances. Since 1948 an Independence Sri lanka was an orbit of above system of Bretton Woods that guided by IMF, WB and ADB and by US led alliances.

    Mainly causes of Internal economic crisis of SRI Lanka and ills of under-development, backwardness, lagging behind technology and science ,local and foreign debts, trade imbalances the consequences that the result of neo-liberal and neo-colonial political-democracy of an Island.

    Writer is that blame for MR ruling alliance since 2005, that disequilibrium in Sri Lankan national economy was outcome-indeed policy response to US led world order. Since 2004 worldwide economic slump that followed the implosion of the new paradigm finical and stock market bubble 2008 in that FREE FALL of Wall Street.

    What was US policy makers in applied unprecedented fiscal and monetary policy that did not take ensure which that deflation economic downturn through out the world.
    The cause of US budget large three tax cuts took US$ 127 billion surplus into deficit of US$ 413 billions in 2004.The Federal Funds rate was cut to 1%,a four decades low. Beside that interest rates fell in US ,which property prices soared, creating a wealth effects that was more market crashed. Except the US Dollar every asset appreciated.US current account deficit approaching 5% to 6% of US GDP since 2002 to 2004.US would have faced a balance payment crisis, that badly effects Asian Central Banks including Sri lanka.

    The writer totally blind on that empirical fact of US led market Economy crisis. For example at that time Japan’s intervention amounted to US$ 320 billions want the Bank of Japan to create money equivalent to 1% of Global GDP; in that was most urgently and effectively one of the vital aggressive 21st century experiments in history of monetary policy ever conducted by Japan. Today Japanese total Debts closed to US $10 trillion dollars more than 200% of its GDP.

    Writer has learn that US led world’s ENGINE OF ECONOMIC GROWTH HAS CHANGE IS that SHIFTED TO EMERGING ECONOMICES IN THAT including PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC CHINA HAD BEEN REPLACE US POSITION 2015.Capital and investment market of Capitalism no longer dominated by US EU AND JAPAN.

    Is quite natural who is helm of Power in our democratic Governance of our nation even TNA or MS+CBK+UNP+JHU+MS and other alliances may be has accepts Global reality of Engine of growth and Development led by China.

    I don’t understand that writer misused his essay given wrong perception of reality of National and global ECONOMY by buys of political theology of Separatism?

    • 1


      The American people are tired of liars and people
      who pretend to be something they’re not.!

      Only US can print China is confirmed slowing down to 7% next year India due to follow and in worse state.Russia is smarting and selling even its diamond plus platinum reserves- the last of the war game with resources.

      Only the west can save them by buying from the east- will it no will make you starve its ruling for 250 years in the English language.

  • 2


    Interesting and informative reading — your statistics that “public debt of Sri Lanka in 2013 under the current regime is Rs.6,793 trillion –a whopping 78.5% of GDP, and External Debt Service Ratio is 25.3% is mind-boggling. And, Sri Lanka is being pawned ‘lock stock and barrel’ to China with no concern about political and economic future of the country.

    You must have a sizeable contact, hearing, and influence with the political and civil leaders of the Tamil populace.

    Why don’t you please emphasise to them that the forthcoming Presidential election is not a vote for Mahinda Rajapakse or Maithripala Srisena but should be considered, in the current context, as simply a vote for the abolition of Executive Presidency, vote against the abuse and arrogance of power, a vote for reinstatement and restoration of parliamentary democracy and democratic institutions, a vote against despotism and corruption. And hence to cast their votes to the one who stands for these.

    This is also perhaps a chance for Tamils to show that they do care for the interests and the genuine progress of the country as a whole. The TNA can even make a statement that though the political needs and aspirations of the Tamils have not been addressed by either of the contenders, they support the one who is for the above mentioned action plans. The Tamils too can thus become “relevant” in the larger body politic of Sri Lanka.

  • 1

    This is a well thought out, researched and articulated (good diction)article for ALL right thinking voters to consider. One can see the contrast in temperance when Karu J speaks here as opposed to the ones in the ruling regime (most recent blasphemy utterd by SB). Yes, Karu J joined hands with MR to achieve a cause and once that was accomplished he came back to his fold as he knew just Peace cannot be achieved through MR and his regime. Churchill the war time hero of the British was not given a second chance by the voters. He was good at war time but not in peace time. Yes, MR with his thuggish background, was good to end the war but to rule in peace time. Unlike the discerning voters in UK, the SL voters (supposedly)gave MR a second chance and we can plainly see the results. With the help of his family and henchmen, he has managed to wreak havoc on all spheres of the SL society. Voters wake up to the reality! In Mathri, we have a CC from within the government challenging MR. That spells hope for all. All need to be vigilant to prevent mass scale rigging of election results and other malpractices including violence. This is easily said than done as history tells us that rulers with dictatorial tendencies will not give up power meekly. MR is one such ruler and he has already demonstrated that he does not respect the rule of law.

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 200 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically disabled after 5 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.