22 May, 2019

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Ranil Can Try His Luck Later, Six Months Later

By Kumar David

Prof Kumar David

UNP Returns To Liberal-Democracy: More Than A Whiff Of Donoughmore

In political science, keep the mind razor sharp and tongue as piercing as a dagger; no quarter should be yielded to blunderers; the world is infested with too many mutts. The art of politics, on the other hand, is the craft of getting as much as can be realistically extracted in a given conjuncture. The objective of principled politics is to permit only morally flawed compromises that are unavoidable.

Was this last the psychology of the drafters who put together the constitutional proposals unveiled by the UNP on 29 May? I am no UNPer, I look from the outside as a Leftist, but this seems how they set about it. A second caveat: I am speaking of the written document, a future UNP government may well betray stacks of promises, as Mahinda, Chandrika, Premadasa, even JR did with no inkling of their own moral ignominy. Lanka is fatigued and demoralised by the foulest crop of politicos in its history. Their forerunners of the first three post-Independence decades had many failings, but were not dishonourable scoundrels. But these days,

‘Tis now the very witching time of night,
When churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes out
Contagion to this world: now (politicos) drink blood”

Enough of this whingeing, back to earth and the UNP draft. I will deal with the Preamble, the Executive, and the Devolution of Powers; this covers much the substance of the document.

Preamble

The opening paragraph justifies the 1978 Constitution as a “socio-economic transformation project” which succeeded. I have no quarrel with the factuality of this statement; it was a project to take Lanka out of populist social-democracy into neo-liberalism, the global craze in the Reagan-Thatcher era. It opened Lanka to globalisation and world trade from which it had hidden in economic insularity since 1956. But it was also at the root of the loss of the moral compass of our people who reckoned: “I am not my brother’s keeper”; the individual bears no social responsibility; selfishness is the primary ethical precept. The decline of social morality, where people stand aside and watch as leaders desecrate state and society, flows from this ethic. They turn “pigeon-livered and lack gall to make oppression bitter”.

I am in agreement with the second paragraph which asserts in strong language that the Mahinda Rajapakse regime desecrated the dignity of the office of President, blatantly abused power, and is guilty of extreme nepotism, corruption, and disregard of democracy and human rights. This is a fit and necessary opening salvo. It is followed by a longish third paragraph of homilies about restoring dignity, returning sovereignty to the people, harmony among races and religions, judicial independence and such like goodies. All manifestos need something along these lines, let it pass without further comment.

Except for a tongue-in-cheek reference to Lanka’s pristine glory which the UNP hopes to restore, the draft is imbued with a very this-worldly flavour. It rings of semi-secularism, avoids nationalism and makes only a droll reference to Buddhism; these last two –isms constitute the staple diet of the petty bourgeois. The draft is steeped in liberalism and is a product of modern bourgeois thought. Whether such liberalism can surmount primitive nationalism and narrow religious bias, emblematic of Rajapakse appeal, is moot. Enlisting the likes of Sobitha Thero may be the key to tilting the balance.

At this point in Lanka’s history, resisting the slide to Corporatist Authoritarianism is a priority. The Left from its standpoint of social-democracy needs to do business with liberal-democracy. However, the Left must also retain and nourish its identity, on which point Vickremabahu’s strategy is hopelessly off the mark. At home, the Left cannot check authoritarianism alone; alliances are needed. But it must not repose faith in future UNP governments; it must preserve its identity and independence. Internationally, post 2008, capitalism is in the throes of a prolonged crisis; there is no way out on that road. Alternative structures are imperative; hence a distinct global Left identity is also vital.

The Executive

            It is an interesting discussion that the drafters (or translators) have garbled. One would have thought UNP legal luminaries could write a few paragraphs sans a string of inconsistencies that would make a schoolboy blush. Thankfully, one can ferret out the gist. What I like best is that three options are brought forward for public debate. This I applaud. But first a crucial point; the document declares “The Presidency (implying the Executive Presidency) will be abolished”. This is explicit and makes common cause with Sobitha’s platform, the JVP, TNA and LSSP-CP. So now this is beyond the pale of doubt as a universal Opposition and Dead Left stand.

The opening clause envisages that executive power be distributed between a Head of State (HoS), Prime Minister (PM) and a Speaker’s Council (SC). Who gets what is not spelt out and just as well; detail is premature in a first draft. As presented, this tripartite division of power is a blanket provision overreaching all three options that follow. But stupidly, Options 1 and 3 do not say how the HoS will be chosen, and Option 2 does not say how the PM is chosen. In Option 3, called a Westminster model, presumably the PM is the person commanding most support in Parliament.

Option 3, which is the same as Sobitha’s and which I prefer, is a return to a Parliamentary system with controls; 25 ministers maximum, mixed proportional-cum-FPP electorates, and a Speaker’s Council of Speaker, PM, Leader of Opposition and party leaders. There is a whiff of Donoughmore everywhere! The draft does not say how the HoS will be chosen, empowered, or if purely ceremonial. If ceremonial, it contradicts the aforementioned overreaching blanket division of executive powers. It’s dumb not to be explicit. The HoS, in this option, should be ceremonial with no executive powers and chosen by a simple mechanism. It is absurd to hold national elections to pick a ceremonial HoS – oh hell, let’s call the bloke President again, now that the wings are clipped.

The first and second options are novel but I dislike both. Nevertheless it is good to encourage public debate. In Option 1 the PM is chosen by direct election, but PM and Cabinet answer to Parliament. Nothing is said about powers or selection of HoS but by virtue of the aforementioned blanket provision HoS shares executive power. A very messy arrangement between HoS, PM and Parliament; all with powers and all with mandates rooted in electorates; a sure fire recipe for conflict. Throw it out! The rest of you go ahead and discuss it till the cows come home; I only state my preference.

Option 2 is the most novel and envisages a directly elected HoS – but says nothing about how the PM is chosen. HoS will head a Council of State (CoS), the supreme policy making body, while PM plus Cabinet, and provincial Boards of Ministers are the implementation arms. The overarching blanket clause mentions a Speaker’s Council (SC) which is not the same as the Council of State. The latter includes provincial Chief Minister’s in addition to those on the Speaker’s Council, but excludes the Speaker.

Presumably only the CoS, not the Speaker’s Council, will exist in Option 2; neither council will exist in Option 1 (why?); SC is for Options 3 only. You will find none of this spelt out in the garbled handout reproduced in the Island and Daily Mirror of 30 May. Nevertheless, and this lamentation apart, the UNP has to be congratulated for invoking a bold and useful discussion of the structure of executive power. Once settled, but not before, corresponding arrangements of the organs of state must be laid out. This is consequential and technocratic, probably not of interest to the public at large.

Devolution

I applauded the document for facing up to devolution; an issue Sobitha’s drafters ducked. Oh yes, the UNP says “unitary”, and somewhere else says “foremost” for Buddhism. Forget it; all for-show-only bluff that liberal-democrats have to put-on, to pander to Lanka’s as yet primitive petty bourgeois mass consciousness. ‘Unitary’ only means de jure federalism is out; well, everyone knows that. What matters are the powers devolved. The assertion “powers will be genuinely devolved to provincial councils” places the UNP, verbally, ahead of the SLFP and the JVP on the national question. I am inclined to tell Tamils and TNA: Turn a blind eye to the bluff and work on clarifying substantive issues. Will any of this eventually come to pass when the monks go marching in? Probably not, but that’s a bridge to cross then; retain organisational strength and ideological independence for now.

Most significant is an unmistakable invocation of Donoughmore principles at the provincial level. The Chief Minister will be the leader of the largest party, the Deputy Chief, leader of the second largest party, the Board of Ministers will be drawn from all parties in the PC. Will it work? Is this country too dementedly over-politicised to revive Donoughmore concepts? Are Lanka’s politicians:

“Bloody, bawdy villains! Remorseless, treacherous, lecherous, ‘kindless’ villains”

Maybe, but a turn to Donoughmore, to a degree, at the provincial, local as well as the national level, is desirable. The concepts are certain to win public backing.

We now have Sobitha’s proposals and the UNP draft; enough to start discussions aimed at a consensus that the whole opposition, including the JVP, can embrace. Next a sticky matter; nominating a Single Issue candidate to run against and defeat Rajapakse in the first instance. This is an initial sine qua non say for six months, without which the abolition of the Executive Presidency and a new constitution are non starters. I guess Ranil wants to run for HoS under Option 2, or substantive PM under Options 1 or 3; ok, he can try his luck later, six months later.

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Latest comments

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    All well and good.There is one important question left unsaid.The question of collection and disbursement of funds – The tax payer’s money.(1)Since 1978, all governments and HOS have spent these funds as if it was apart of their dowry.This got to stop.At the moment the sole authority to control funds is with the Deputy Sec.Treasury. This had been so since 1911. In 1994, P.B.Jayasundera changed it and shifted the subject matter to his favourites, brought from outside,the safe guard was thus aborted.The country must have a Public Officer who is empowered to tell the politicians -so much and nothing more until the Parliament approves.He must be safe in his appointment to say that.(2) is a further extension of the disbursement of Funds – the State Owned Ventures for which the tax payer had footed the bill.When the Fertlizer manufacturing facility was closed down the Govt of the day did not get the tax payers permission nor that of the Parliament.The gravity of that act is seen today with the Kidney problems in the NCP.Then they disposed of the Distilleries Corporation, which was a bottomless well for the Govt finances.Today the treasury is begging for money.Then they sold the other enterprises via the PERC with no by your leave to the tax payer or the parliament.When the SOE were privatised the guiding principal to select a buyer was competence in the Industry and financial ability.This was not the criterion used in the sale of the Sugar industry.Import of sugar is the third highest cost centre for this country.To keep this discussion objective let us not go into details of the corruption that took place with the sale of sugar factories. Once the sale was effected the PERC/treasury was to keep a close watch on the performance. That never happened.Sugar, Ceramic industry were to be sold/ or sold as scrap by the buyers
    In addition to discussing the nitty gritty’s of the ruling part we should also discuss the collection and disposal of the tax payer’s money, and prevent ambitious people converting tax payer’s funds to private funds.
    By tax payer I include even the beggar who pays Taxes for the petty sprat he purchases for his measely meal.

    Then there is the programme of work by the various govt depts. That was the function of the Ministry of Planning. PBJ aborted that too.This means that the Tax payer does not get a payback for his funds. Good example are the collection of silt in the reservoirs in the NCP and the Hydro reservoirs( No cover crop to prevent soil leaching into the reservoirs).One minister said the reservoirs in the NCP are 8-10 feet filled with silt!
    More can be said but let keep to these for the time being

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    I think the HOS should be ceremonial since he or she is not part of and does not answer to parliament. Power should be shared in parliament among the elected representatives of the people with necessary safeguards against a monopoly. This can be achieved if there is a sharing of power between the govt, opposition and the periphery. If the cabinet can comprise of both members of the Govt and Opposition, that would be conducive to bipartisan governance.

    Also if 50% of the members of parliament can be appointed through the Provincial Council system it would help in the devolution of powers while retaining the central control. Deputy Ministers may be from the provincial groups. This will help bring down the numbers of elected representatives and duplication of powers. Also the allocation of funds should not differentiate between Govt and Opposition and be on a provincial basis depending on the population.

    Also the proper procedures including judicial safeguards and time spans for introducing amendments to the constitution need to be incorporated. No one should be able to change the constitution within 4-6 months without due procedure and review. Also all extra constitutional procedures such as the PTA must not be entertained.

    Govt should appoint a Constitional Commission comprising of emminent persons to consider all such proposals and come up with a final model. This has to be done at a national level with inputs from the public and all stakeholders.

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    A thoughtful analysis, highlighting what bedevils the constitution -making, tampering and remaking exercises in Sri Lanka. Constitutions are becoming like the election manifestos of political parties, at best or those of small-minded but ambitious tin pot dictators, at worst.

    What we need is a ‘Constitution Commission’ of eminent persons to deliberate over and spell out a vision for this country that will stand the test of time and define us as a civilized people, we truly are. We have yet such persons in this country and there are also such persons of Sri Lankan origin abroad. This Commission should thereafter spell out the principles and structural arrangements that would give form to this vision. The constitution should create institutions that would serve the people and stand the test of time and small persons who may assume political power. The new constitution should be a document that should not only serve our needs now, but also be capable of catering to the needs of the times for centuries to come. It should be a visionary document, tempered by wisdom, cognizant of human frailties and of course practicable, in the context of our culture, experiences, value systems and needs. It should while borrowing ideas from around the world, be tailored for us. It cannot be a transplantation or graft that does not naturally fit us.

    Politicians should not be part of this exercise, because of the depths to which most of them have sunk intellectually, morally and in ability. The constitution should be designed to meet the needs of the citizens of Sri Lanka and not her politicians. Lawyers as a class should also be kept at a distance while formulating the principles and structures of the constitution and be called upon to draft the contents in accordance with the vision and principles enunciated by the Commission. A constitution should be interpreted in terms of its principles and not on the basis of the loopholes and contradictions deliberately built into its sections, subsections and appendices. These infirmities sustain those who take on law as a profession and are trained to seek them and benefit from them. The ultimately, legitimize the criminality of politicians who swear to uphold the constitution. The Constitution Commission should ensure that the final draft of the constitution, is consonant with the vision and principles they spelt out.

    How such a ‘Constitution Commission’ whose recommendations shall be mandatory for acceptance, be constituted is subject to study. A ‘Who will bell the cat?’ situation! The Commission should of course formulate the new constitution after wide consultations,the widest possible public input and debate.

    We do not need a Mahinda Rajapakse, Ranil Wickremasinghe, Chandrika Kumaratunge, Ven.Sobitha Thera, Wimal Weerawanse, Champika Ranawake, Rajavarothayan Sambanthan or a Rauf Hakeem, constitution. We do not a need constitutions designed for the Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Christians and such other groups. We need a constitution for all Sri Lankans, that is designed to permit each and everyone of us to live in freedom, dignity and security; with unabridged rights and obligations; guarantees of equal opportunities; the right to equal treatment by the state; the right to be served by the state; and make for a state that is answerable/ accountable to us.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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      Rajasingham Narendran says,

      “..What we need is a ‘Constitution Commission’ of eminent persons to deliberate over and spell out a vision for this country..”

      Poor chap, he is daydreaming of a utopian!

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        Lasith,

        Have we become so cynical that it is now a sin to dream and hope for something better? It is dreams that become a reality, when more and more of us begin to do. It is better to dream of something better amidst the nightmare unfolding around us, rather than be overwhelmed by it.

        Dr.RN

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          Yes, Dr.R.N.we have become cynical.Did any political party oppose the antics of the balu peramuna?Politicians attended the gathering to complete the burning of that man’s body, the man who insulted Buddhism and desecrated the hollowed premises of the tooth relic.That body should have been left for the hungry dogs to feed on.
          We are cynical.There were revolutionaries in our youth. Today they are like hungry dogs waiting for thrown off food off a table.There was man, aGraduate, whose performance during tele discussions that I used to wait to watch, though he used to shout a lot and use unparliamentary language. Today that joker had become another railway signal post.What about GLPeiris and Sarath Amunugama, and vasudeva.Can you blame any one for being cynical?

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            Capuchins,

            I share your frustration, bur yet am hopeful because, we Sri Lankans on the whole are a very decent people. Unfortunately, we are producing the garbage that is polluting this country and is nauseating. Holding our noses is not enough, we have remember what clean air is , even if we are unable to clear the garbage fast enough.

            Dr.RN

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          Dream on man, dream on! We all have witnessed many of these dreams already: A plethora of Presidential Commissions, Presidential Task Forces, All Party Conferences and what not. Has anyone seen the outcome of any of them? This person RN is wasting our time talking about science fictions! The only pragmatic solution at this juncture is what has been proposed by UNP-an altogether new constitution based on the majority ideas and contributions. And of course one can derive ideas, experiences and precedence from the existing constitution and other constitutions in the world.

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            Lasith,

            Many also had other grand dreams and worked overnight to bring them to fruition. Fortunately, they ended ignonimously, violently and abruptly at Nanthikadal . Unfortunately, the Tamils here paid a very heavy price for this dream which became their nightmare.

            Dr.RN

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    It is good to hear these privileged people who live comfortable lives still call themselves Lefties.

    Lefties should be totally focussed on lifting the living standards of the poor, and the oppressed and protect them from exploitation by the Bourgeois..

    The current Prez is doing a great job to fullfil the aspirations of the Srilankan proletariet which had been hoodwinked and cheated by many well off and well educated so called leftist leaders .for nearly six decades.

    The fact that he is doing it with the help of a Constitution which was put in place by a Bourgeois govt run by the Bourgeois party the UNP,to keep their strangle hold on the proletariat and perpetuate their oppression has become severly unpalatable to the Bourgeoisie in Colombo.

    Besides the UNP now totally embedded with the TNA, which is the party of the Tamil Bourgoisie, and the Vellalas is pushed into a corner by the strident demands of Sambandan for total Land and Police Powers.

    Instead of telling the TNA leader yes or no to his demands , the Bourgious Leader Ranil has come up with this new “Genie” hoping that his fellow bourgiosie followers will give him more time.

    It seems to work well among his followers, and the Diaspora IC, that they are willing to back even Sobitha as their common one to rule which they constantly call the Sinhala Buddhist Nation.hoping that he will pave the way for Ranil to become the leader and allow him to allocate Police Powers and Land Rights to Sambandan..

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      K.A Sumanasekera,
      I Cannot but agree with you more when you wrote, The President is using the Constitution to ‘lift the living standards of the poor.’ Not just that, I believe people understand that if not for executive powers of the Presidency, Mahinda Rajapakse would never have cobbled an alliance together to end the 30 year long terrorism. So, I do not see the average man is opposed to powers of the President so long as he is using it to do a job of work that is beneficial to them.

      Recently P B Jayasundara said; “The poverty rate has come down from 15 percent to 6.5 percent. Unemployment is down to 4 percent. Our human development indicators are first world class. In fact one foreign journal said Sri Lanka was a third world country with first world human development indicators. Our life expectancy and infant mortality ratios are on par with the US and EU.”

      He also said; “In 2001 and the economy contracted by 1.2%. But, in 2012 growth rate of 6.4%. In 2001, we had blackouts for more than 12 hours each day, but not so in 2012. Measures were taken to integrate the household and rural economies with the country’s economy….”

      That means the President has done a good job. And they will have to speculate whether he will progress in the same line.

      Average man has not forgotten that the forces that promoted fake peace were against Rajapakse being elected the President of the country in 2005. People also know that the same lot had put all possible obstacles to Rajapakse war efforts by ridiculing his forces as marching to Madawachchi instead killinotchchi and so on. When Rajapakse won the war against all odds, same right wing gang colluded with not just the bankrupt new and old leftists but LTTE proxies to use the war winning General as gullible to cover up their nakedness. Now the General is all but forgotten. Then they tried Arab springs, FUTA springs and even a Haultsdrop spring. All the that puffed up characters being utter failures, a Proffessori taken to the forefront to make a popular monk the buccaneer to fight his phantom dictatorship. Alas and alack, too many back stabbers are lurking in the shadows.

      In spite of various charges that JRJ would be a dictator like Marcos, we had elections and elected a new President on schedule. Not just the President, we even changed the government in 1994. Only ChandrikaK tried to overstay one year at the end of her term and that too was overruled by the SC. So, what’s all this fuss about Dictatorship? Sheer jealousy.
      Leela

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        Now looking back the manner MR administration handled all these in the post war sessions, we dare to see the millitary defeat of Tamil rebells in the country as not a real victory but rather a Pyrrhic Victory.

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        Leela says,

        “.. Recently P B Jayasundara said; “The poverty rate has come down from 15 percent to 6.5 percent. Unemployment is down to 4 percent. Our human development indicators are first world class. In fact one foreign journal said Sri Lanka was a third world country with first world human development indicators. Our life expectancy and infant mortality ratios are on par with the US and EU.”

        He also said; “In 2001 and the economy contracted by 1.2%. But, in 2012 growth rate of 6.4%. In 2001, we had blackouts for more than 12 hours each day, but not so in 2012. Measures were taken to integrate the household and rural economies with the country’s economy….”

        That means the President has done a good job. And they will have to speculate whether he will progress in the same line.
        ..”

        Have the Angoda people caught you now but forgot to give you the dose or have you gone mad to hysteria!?

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        Sumanasekera and Leela,

        What you call the proletariat is grumbling loud enough, but their collective voice is not being heard. Their agony is near breaking point and if not heeded, will bring this government down soon enough. Surprisingly, it is not only the mundane bread and butter issues that bother them, but the nauseating abuse of power by this government, in the past two years. The proletariat is much more educated and worldly-wise now. Please put your ears to the ground and you will hear the approaching stampede.

        Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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          Dr.Rajasingham Narendran,
          I agree with you that MR and his government have a lot of shortcomings. But what alternative we have? As I see it, the leader of the UNP, meaning RanilW is the only alternative to MR. Wait and see, this Ven Sobitha’s single aim common candidature is a non starter. In my opinion, he is just having his last hurrah. And, my predictions haven’t gone off track so far. The question then is whether things will be better under RanilW. I think we’ll end up in a worse situation than we are in now. We’ll loose the existing peace in all fronts; the JVP and rump LTTE are extremists of extreme in their field. In the end we’ll end up more or less like Libya now. That’s why I am backing MR.
          Leela

          You are right ‘the proletariat is much more educated and worldly-wise now.’ Don’t forget, MR is a very smart man as well. He let people voice their decent to get the het out the way they want. He only sends unarmed police first followed by a catcher to settle the dispute. Every dispute has been settled amicably so far except when violence aimed cliques like the JVP, rump LTTE and LTTE proxies are involved when he used the stick. Not just that, of late, he asked Devananda to voice his opinion on 13A freely? I can see, some SLFP MPs started do the same. At least so far, I for one cannot feel resentment against him.
          Leela

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            Leela,

            Thanks. I agree our choice is between the devil and the deep blue sea. Neither are attractive. The stick is now hardly concealed. The scenes of cash being paid out to hired hoodlums and goons have been caught on camera and have angered the people. Douglas, is not the opinion maker among the Tamils. He hardly had any credibility ever. MR has become mad with time. He is playing into the hands of the very same forces he is trying to fight. Small steps that could have won the hearts and minds of the ordinary Tamils, who are the majority and do not want to have any truck with the likes of the LTTE , were stupidly missed. He is about to pay the price for this stupidity. He is too drunk with power and so convinced of the invincibility of his Machiavellian abilities, that he has lost his natural political instincts and touch with the people. I feel sorry for him and this country. He had the opportunity to be different and make a difference to this country. We, the people are the losers, once again.

            Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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    The concepts will never win public backing. The public is fed up of elections and so many levels of politicians. They only want a president and 225 MPs and work. Not one more politician.

    Ask the public about 13 amendment. Why the government is chickening out of fear?

    They will tell loud and clear.

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    ‘Our life expectancy and infant mortality ratios are on par with the US and EU.”
    You nutcase, Is this because of your Gonraja?

    Hey…you still here? Didnt they take you to Angoda yet?

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      Idiot Tsunami Hora,
      Go to CIA world factbook and see for your self.

      ‘Life expectancy’ at birth for Sri Lanka is 76.15, and the US is 78.62, and India is 67.48 years. And ‘the number of deaths of infants under one year old per 1,000’ in Sri Lanka is 9.24 and in the US is 5.90 and in India is 44.60. See the difference of figures between the US and Sri Lanka and the US and India.

      Still don’t get it?

      Who should go to Angoda you or me. Idiot.

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        O come one Leela mate.
        Why losing temper?
        Read again what I have asked.
        I asked ‘do you give credit to this regime
        because SL is having high life expectancy?
        If you say ‘yes’ I will take you to Angoda myself.

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          sorry type – ‘come on Leela’

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      ‘Life expectancy’ at birth for the UK is 80.29. Infants deaths in the UK are 4.50. Compare the figures with ours and our neighbour India’s idiot.

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        Leela, [Edited out], do you know the life expectancy of people in Anuradhapura, Kebithigollawa, Ampara… where the people are dying of bladder disease due to adulterated poisonous fertilizer and pesticides brought in to the country by your cheap Madamulana Gankabaraya?

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        Ms. Leela Angoda, Everyone knows that you are THE biggest Con-Artist here in this forum. Your job is to lick Rangojapakses rear end, which is no secret and you yourself should admit it. I dont give a damn about who’s what you lick, its your choice.

        The problem is you spreading hatred here. You are a racist.
        You hate Tamils, Moslems, and even the Sinhalese those who are anti Rangojapaksas. You hate TG for revealing facts & figures. You hate RW because you know he could easily chase the rangoja away if he starts to lie.
        Are you a Buddhist?
        O Leela you are insane!

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          Agree, she has always been trying to paint an another picture about very many issues of the current realities… Every child would see it but Leela and her ilk would not. Hope not Leela s kind of senior people represent significant numbers in lanken population.

          She still writes about the vision of MR that she herself to have seen in him… I ask myself what a vision he has got – not trying to provide the most essentials to the nation today.. still brainwashing leelas like stupid masses – big talking about his victory against terror. DJ himself accuse the govt of not paying genuine efforts to peace process.

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    Sumanasekara and Leela, where are you from? Angoda asylum by any chance.

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      Escaped from dehewela zoo, if u find them call the zoo number…

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    Thomas L.Friedman wrote ‘New York times ..the Global edition some times back said ‘ we basically have two bankrupt parties bankrupting the country’…”if competition is good for our economy”..” why is not it good for our politics?” .. these TWO PARTIES are lying to you.
    They cannot tell the truth because they are each other trapped in decades of special interest.” He further said.. I am not going to tell you what you WANT to hear. I am going to tell you what you NEED to hear if we want to be the world’s leaders, not the new Romans.”

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    Anti Govt and Anti Rajapaksa lowbrow commentators here have no facts and figures to challenge the new Lankan Economy and the improving living standards of the inhabitants, in the peaceful environment without the Tigers.

    Their leaders in Lankan are in the same boat.

    Hence the ever increasin bogus propaganda and impossible proposals to rewrite the rule book .

    Just imagine the inhabitants handing over the reins to rule to this lot?.

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      Sumane, You bet. The worm also turns.What economic progress are you talking about? With this new economic order even prostitution is in the hands of Chinese.Go down Marine avenue.In due course there want be Sumanasekaras and Leelas. There will be Ching Chang Chungs.

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        Soon the Sumanasekera, Leela, their husbands, wives, daughters and sons will join the prostitute lines especially after the James Packer starts his casino business because under the guise of casino business prostitution is also a thriving business and Leela and KA Sumanasekera are so greedy of dollars that they would sell their wives, daughters and mothers to earn that shit. Already they have plenty of experience in selling their assholes for the regime to earn filthy money of the tsunami hora.

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    Since this discussion is still proceeding, I wish to add a few more items.
    Sarath Amunugamas and CP de Silvas of this world run down the State Owned Enterprises.The socalled able people who took over these SOEs after a corrupt process, destroyed what was left over. Otherwise how can you explain the fact that of the 125 odd SOEs privatised not even five are still functioning. There are problems with the SOE accepted. Whose fault is it?I have been involved with the SOEs since the time of Mr.Dudley senanayake.I can make some comments on it.Except in the post 1971 period lasting till 1977, the SOEs were directed not by capable managers but by riff raff. I have experience with Tailors, Cigarette salesmen,pimps,security guards, fabricators of documents ( hence dismissed form Govt service)Karawadu salesmen etc etc.What i am coming to is that the country had not developed a managerial class to run the SOEs.The managerial and technical class withing the organisations are kept down.if that managerial class was developed many of the bad decisions of the SOEs Directors could have been aborted.

    So my proposal is that, all the appointments as Directors to the SOes should be approved by the Committee of Higher Appointments.The committee should give adequate time for any protests.The Directorate of these SOEs should not change with the Change of the party forming the Govt.Except the post of the Chairman and the MD rest of the appointments should reflect the varying specialities within the organisation.

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    We should eliminate all the minister positions.Member of the parliament must stay in the parliament.They should attend only parliament sessions. Head of Government Dept,cooperation or any institution must not be political appointments.Educated talented professionals must be selected for such positions by a commission(non political). Country will be well off without those thugs and thieves(ministers)in higher positions.Let the educated, competent professionals lead Sri Lanka.

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    Another comment of interest.In the last two and half decades I have come across a peculiar form of public administration – administration by falsification of documents.The first occasion was on a matter involving an aquisition of a land at Matara. I found that the Division Secretary at Matara writing a letter with false information to the sec/Lands and the GMR.The second occasion was over an application to establish a small distillery to ship a particular type of alcohol to a party in Singapore.The application was rejected by the Director General of Fiscal Policy, when the refusal was queried ,the DGFP’s office referred to a Cabinet decision.When they were asked to provide a copy of the said cabinet decision a person who identified himself as a Director in the Department became abusive over the phone.The third incident involved the PERC.There the Director General PERC referred to a cabinet decision.This was challenged in Courts.The Courts rejected the application, that was acceptable, what was not acceptable was that the allegation that a cabinet decision was not a fact, but a falsification, was not commented on.
    Under the circumstances, what mechanism can be put in place to ensure a clean administration?

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    Kumar Davidm you are a waste

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      Yes Rod, because the grass eating apes in this cursed island,once owned by a Hindu community led by Queen Kuveni, taken over by that rogue Vijaya and his killers have now resulted in this nonsense where thugs set fire to themselves in front of the Holy Dalada Maligawa, where drunken thugs attack shops and leechers seeking blood call themselves religious leaders.

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