19 January, 2022

Blog

Save The Commonwealth Brand: Tell Sri Lanka ‘Enough’

By Ronald Sanders

Sir Ronald Sanders

It is time for the Commonwealth of Nations to suspend Sri Lanka from its councils.

In doing so, the Commonwealth would restore confidence in its 2.1 billion people that it is not a hypocritical association that claims to stand for values, including democracy, human rights and the rule of law but fails to act to discipline governments that violate these values.

The Sri Lanka government has now seriously and persistently violated the principles to which every Commonwealth country has declared itself to be committed, and, according to the Commonwealth’s rules this is ground for suspension from its councils as a first step.

Well-thinking people across the Commonwealth, and those who are concerned about the credibility of the 54-nation grouping, expect the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) to be convened swiftly to suspend Sri Lanka from the Council of the Commonwealth and to set an agenda and time table for the government to implement measures to restore respect for the rule of law. CMAG is a rotating group of foreign ministers from nine Commonwealth countries that is charged with overseeing that Commonwealth values, as set out in many declarations, are respected.

The urgency for CMAG action on Sri Lanka has been triggered by the decision of Sri Lanka President, Mahinda Rajapaksa to dismiss the country’s Chief Justice, Shirani Bandaranayake, after a widely condemned impeachment process.

Rajapaska ignored warnings from Amnesty International, the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), theCommonwealth Lawyers Association, the Commonwealth Judges and Magistrates Associationand the Commonwealth Secretary-General, Kamalesh Sharma, not to proceed with impeachment that followed a decision by the Chief Justice that found a controversial Bill tabled in the Parliament unconstitutional. The Bill had sought to grant disproportionate powers to the Minister of Economic Development, one of the President’s brothers.

Slapping the Commonwealth Secretary-General and other Commonwealth legal bodies in the face, President Rajapaska proceeded to dismiss the Chief Justice and to appoint his former Attorney-General to the post. Worse yet, he did so after the Supreme Court ruled that the impeachment proceedings conducted by the Rajapaksa-dominated parliament were illegal. The Rajapaksa family holds other senior government positions, including head of the defence ministry and the Speaker of Parliament. One of Mr Rajapaksa’s sons also sits as a member of parliament.

This latest violation flagrantly scorns Commonwealth values as set out in the Latimer House Principles which state: “Judiciaries and parliaments should fulfill their respective but critical roles in the promotion of the rule of law in a complementary and constructive manner; Interaction, if any, between the executive and the judiciary should not compromise judicial independence; and Judges should be subject to suspension or removal only for reasons of incapacity or misbehaviour that clearly renders them unfit to discharge their duties.”

Sri Lanka is an even bigger problem for the Commonwealth because it is scheduled to host the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in November.No time can now be wasted in deciding to shift the venue to another Commonwealth country.

If Commonwealth Heads of Government turn-up in Sri Lanka, they would be sending an unacceptable signal to the world community that governments that violate human rights and the rule of law can do so without fear of censure.  If Heads go to Sri Lanka, the Commonwealth can discard its brand as a ‘values based association” and start looking for something else to justify its existence.  But, whoever remains in it, it would cease to be respected by the people of its own countries and the international community.

That would be a sad loss for the 32 small states that are a significant number of the 54-nation Commonwealth.  They need a vibrant, respected Commonwealth as an advocate and interlocutor on their behalf in the international community.  A straw organisation existing on the margins of global regard can do absolutely nothing for them.

In this connection, the government of Canada should be complemented for trying for over a year to restrain the government of Sri Lanka from its excesses and to hold it to account for human rights abuses arising from a war with the Tamil Tigers that ended in 2009.  The Sri Lanka government has refused to allow an independent inquiry into the deaths of hundreds of thousands of civilians during the conflict between government forces and the Tamil Tigers as well as a worsening human rights situation.

Canadian Prime Minister  Stephen Harper has now indicated that his government wants Sri Lanka to be discussed at the next meeting of CMAG.  Both opposition parties in Canada have gone further calling on Harper to declare that he would boycott the CHOGM if it is held in Sri Lanka.

A debate in both the Houses of Parliament in Britain and a subsequent statement by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office also indicate “deep concern” and called on the Sri Lanka government to “respect democratic principles”.

However, while Canada and Britain have spoken-up, many developing Commonwealth countries have so far remained silent.  Their voices also need to be heard, particularly as many of them place great store in democracy and the rule of law both as a system of governance and as an imperative for attracting investment.Judicial independence is fundamental to the rule of law and essential for any democratic and accountable government.

Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma has announced that he will be visiting Sri Lanka in February.  It is his job to try to resolve the impasse with an obdurate Sri Lanka government that has so far ignored his advice and warnings of others.  It is also his job to tell the Sri Lanka President that he has violated Commonwealth rules and that, unless the action on the Chief Justice is reversed and a credible, enforceable plan is presented, Sri Lanka will be placed immediately on the agenda for CMAG with a view to suspending it from the Councils of the Commonwealth.

In any event, the Sri Lanka government has now done enough to warrant moving the venue for November’s CHOGM to another country.  The Government cannot spurn the advice of the Secretary-General, Commonwealth legal organisation and other international groupings and yet demand to be privileged to host CHOGM.  After all, the location for hosting a Heads of Government meeting must be in the interest of the Commonwealth as a whole.

The foreign ministers of two Caribbean countries – Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago – are members of CMAG.  In this connection, they have an important role to play in upholding the values that their own countries honour and respect – those values are what differentiates the Commonwealth in the world and makes it special.

*Sanders was a member of the Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group 2010-2011. He is a former Caribbean diplomat and currently is a consultant and writer. Responses and previous commentaries:www.sirronaldsanders.com Courtesy huntingtonnews.net.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 0
    0

    i would say , save the world by wiping out this pariah state from the face of the earth.

    • 0
      0

      The so-called Commonwealth of Nations is a CIRCUS!
      It is an irrelevant, obsolete and primitive organization, a remnant of British imperialism, that has morphed into an organization that supports and promotes third world dictators and their MEGALOMANIA!
      In Sri Lanka Rajapakse uses the Commonwealth circus to display it’s massive security aparatus and keep the people and citizens of Colombo in a virtual shut down while the Commonwealth of Parliament’s clowns wined and dined in Colombo in November 2012. Sri Lanka’s parliament is full of uneducated morons, criminals, goon, thugs, fools and dead leftist geriatrics. The Commonwealth parliament magnifies geometrically the proportion of rotten parliamentarians!
      Sri Lanka’s people wasted a massive amount of tax fund’s on paying for the Dictators Rajapakse’s useless Hambantota Commonwealth games bid which if it had been won would have bankrupted the country. The Commonwealth is a Circus that should be closed down cos it dose not even afford the pleasure and laughs that a circus provides!

      • 0
        0

        If the old fool Kamalesh Sharma comes to Lanka, the Sri Lanka Spring movement must organize a massive protest against the Commonwealth for patronizing a dictator!
        The Commonwealth is an irrelevant and obsolete CIRCUS of clowns and third world dictatorships who wanna feel great while their former white boss, Britain looks on and smiles indulgently at the Nationalist bull shit that the third world dictatorships sprout. Meanwhile UK engages the usual DOUBLESPEAK on human rights..

        That old fool Kamalesh Sharma, from big brother India, should be fired for choosing Rajapaksa Dictatorship to host CHOGM and the organization closed down..

      • 0
        0

        Hi Chanakya
        I agree one hundred percent with your comments. Well said. If in reality, the commonwealth of nations should adopt a motion that Sri Lanka should not hold the Commonwealth conference in Sri Lanka this time, it would be a lesson for Sri Lanka. The Canadian Prime Minister has already decided not to attend the conference in Sri Lanka. We have to wait and see. These politicians cannot be trusted.

    • 0
      0

      Rama

      Leave my people alone.

  • 0
    0

    Looks like a call across the Commonwealth is rising against our King. For the many unsolicited defenders of the rogue regime in these pages and cyber space, the ominous comments of Sir Ronald is not that can be overlooked “…In doing so, the Commonwealth would restore confidence in its 2.1 billion people that it is not a hypocritical association that claims to stand for values, including democracy, human rights and the rule of law but fails to act to discipline governments that violate these values…” If Sanders speak for the Caribbean, Harper for Canada, Cameron for much of Britain and other CWG’s and Gillard for Austalia (and New Zealand) the Rajapakse goose is just as well as cooked.

    So is it going to be Deja Vu Geneva AHRC despite the millions spent on irrelevant mouthpieces of the Bell Pottinger variety?

    Senguttuvan

    • 0
      0

      Senguttuvan, the proof of the pudding is in eating. Therefore let us wait and see, as to what the Commonwealth would do, because we have found all this while these powerful bodies have only being paying Lip service to ethics but nothing constructive to deter those who violate decent accepted norms. Hopefully this would not be a case of pulling the wool over our eyes yet agin.

    • 0
      0

      hypocritical association that claims to stand for values

      Who are you trying to fool Senguttuvan. Please remember that Canada recently de-proscribed MEK, a known Iranian terrorist group to intimidate Iranian government. Do you think everybody has forgotten how Anton Balasingham used to freely operate from London? Why is this “Sr. Ronald Sanders” so silent about those? Will anyone ever table those issues on CMAG? For you anything and everything “British” is good.

  • 0
    0

    Before 1948 we were governed by the Queen and Britain gave us good governance.
    DSSenanayake went to UK and “freed” us from being a Dominion.
    Then the rot started – he opened up Gal Oya and settled all from south – none from the east.
    Then SWRD B rode the racial and religious bandwagon and said that sri lanka yearned to be “free” – the very first act was to disenfranchse the indian tamils who slaved in the plantations for the major portion of the nation’s income.
    Then,it was a story of flawed elections and massacres of tamils culminating in the 1983 pogrom – the LTTE was born.
    Now the new Rajapakse scourge has taken firm hold.
    The Commonwealth must decide about sri lanka soon.

    • 0
      0

      Are you a retard? British good governance! They sucked everything from us to build their empire.Remember Ireland left commonwealth in 1949 and never returned. Why???
      Go and worship British queen.

      • 0
        0

        Sixty years later the Rajapaksa gang of thieves are sucking everything out of Sri Lanka.

        Enjoy the freedom to be ripped off by your very own Sinhala thief king!

      • 0
        0

        Dubdoc,
        What did they “suck”?
        They gave us civilisation – roads,bridges,railways,education,laws,science,medicine etc.
        True, the plantations had boards of management in britain, and the british planters were managers.
        We took over & what happened? What happened to the oil/gas companies – all corrupted and run into the ground.
        Anyday I will respect the Queen rather than the Bandaranayakes and Rajapakses.

        Irish were catholics who hated a protestant monarch.
        It was a politico-religious conflict.

        • 0
          0

          Justice,
          What did they suck? You behave like the British and other colonial rulers were great masters.They sucked all the wealth from all the colonies and built those roads etc not because for the love of people but to quickly transport their produce.Go and see how the roads were build across the irrigation tanks in the dry zone of Sri Lanka. They had no regard for the local values and economy.Health was neglected and many died with Malaria.Our irrigation system was totally neglected and tea and rubber were cultivated for making extensive profits.If they loved us why could not they improve our paddy cultivation?

          If you want to see what British sucked please go to British museum just to witness only a fraction of some treasures.The robbers are auctioning a precious moonstone very soon in London.

          You need to read Sri Lankan history to realize how civilized our kingdoms then. Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa civilizations were thriving when British were living in caves.British enforced their christian values on us.

          Irish had a famine called potato famine from 1845 to 1850 and many died and many emigrated.British ruled them about 700yrs and many similarities exist in their occupation of Sri Lanka. They also build railways and other things what you mention as they did in Ceylon.
          Senanayakes,Bandaranayakes were created by British to takeover power when they had to leave.Please do not be this ignorant.I totally agree since independence our rulers destroyed our nation.That does not mean British were just rulers.Shame on you my friend.

          • 0
            0

            Yes Brits did steal, but they also gave the nation some structure and civilized from of government. All wrecked and dismantled by the uneducated leaders of this country who wants to rule by the law of the thugs.
            But now the Tyrant, his family, his 156 crooked MPs, and the army of nationwide gansters are pillaging from the very people who vote this Tyrant and pretentious hero who was hiding behind General Fonseka during the war. He puts people like kudu duminda, the murderer, in singapore to let him escape from the law, yet puts heroes like Fonseka in dungeon for false charges of misappropriating few cents, when the mess up of awarding the suspect contract was made by his ignorant brother Goata.

            When ones own people steal, it is more hurtful than the foreigners, because we know the motives of foreigners, and not of the cheating natives.

            • 0
              0

              Have our leaders since the independence proved that they lead the island better than the britisch did then ? They abused making use of our resources, but give and take was there. Until a few years back now, did we have new roads built by any previous govts no ? It was not becauase they are not capable to do so, but they only concentrated themselves and were not efficient enough. Not the MR who started with telecommunication projects and the road construciton work, it was the governments that prior to him, but the approved donations and loans he had to continue becase they were from ADB and other banks. Today peoplle feel that great leader who intentionally killed avalanch of innocent civilians, brought the proper to the country. At the time Tsunami struck the country, world leaders hailed CBK and donated collossal amounts of funds because her foreign relations with EU, USA and other western nations were handled very friendly by the late minister Kadirgamar. All these foreign ties have been brocken to date because of the idiotic principles that the current regime is introducing by their undemocratic governance. However, fruits from the planted were plucked by cunning MR and the gang today, putting entire blame on to CBK´s governments.

      • 0
        0

        Sri Lanka has been independent for more than 60 years. What do we have to show for it? If the Brits were bad, what have successive Sri Lankan governments done to improve quality of life or safeguard the rights of Sri Lankan’s?

        And what have the citizens of the country done to hold governments accountable?

        • 0
          0

          abssolute f***all.

      • 0
        0

        You may be more retarded than justice I do not think, the British empire and , all the governments up until now has stolen as much as this one , in the last seven years.

        • 0
          0

          100% agree with you…

          Today, the opposition made it clear that the current govt has no funds and IMF is questioning whether to approve a loan or not… so MR is explaining something palatable while not even providing the funds as promised for the flood victims. They always waste and explain things like making castles on the sand – they have funds to invest for car racing contests in colombo but not for the poor man´s need.. this the truth of MR – who is the great leader for the shanty dwellers and the uneducated masses of the country.

      • 0
        0

        Dubdoc asks:

        “Are you a retard? “

        Politically incorrect.

  • 0
    0

    Should there not be both Push-Pull actions like an amplifier from the grass roots in SL as well as externally to link-up like minded groups to raise a fighting fund for lobbying the external powers to stem the tide? The mini “Concerned Citizens” group should expand and become more and more inclusive into the many thousands if not hundreds of thousands and become a sort of 5th estate akin to the the intelligence wing of a Democracy. The 4th estate of the Srilankan is cowed, frightened and helpless to play its proper role as during the time of Iquabal Athass and others like him?

    As any fool, idiot or imbecile can vote to elect and/or have him or herself be represented by another similar fool, idiot, imbecile or psychopath without any worthy, proper and good or decent qualifications of character, background or learning; it’s time the educated and discerning intelligentsia and intellectuals start to educate the others with all the ongoing exacerbating wrongs that continue to be done in a failed state and so-called Democracy that are inimical to the general populaces and try to redirect the course of Srilankan politics that are surely without doubt heading on a suicidal course for the ordinary people outside the ruling elite parasites and the other parasites within parasites that live on and off them.

    Alas who are the so-called kings and royalty of to-day are they anything more than those who had mass murderers in their ancestry to gain control over the masses to accumulate wealth? And today in SL it’s been taken over by the unholy trinity of Sarath and Mervin Silvas and the MR clan? In Australia too there is a group called “Getup” that has several thousands of members and have accomplished some things outside of all the political parties as political pressure group. How much greater is the need in SL as well as abroad o turn the tide on these self serving, ugly and greedy rulers and their parasitic cohorts?

  • 0
    0

    A bigger issue is to have the monster himself in the chair of CHOG for the next two years. This would make a mockery of commonwealth values and principles. Just imagine Idi Amin or Mugabe heading CHOG. Now Idi Mahin is all set to take over, O tempora! O mores!

    • 0
      0

      Agreed. MR will take this opportunity to humiliate the British as he has not forgotten the nasty incidents at Oxford and to his friend Gadaffi of Libya. He has the attitude of taking revenge quietly.

  • 0
    0

    There is No Way that CHOGM held in the Rajapaksa heartland of Hambantotal aginst all the acts they have done against humanity in the last few years.

    Shame on you the Commonwealth.

    • 0
      0

      If you seriously want to get Sri Lanka out of this mess, all Sri Lankan’s must pressure the Commonwealth to desist from holding CHOGM in Sri Lanka.

  • 0
    0

    At last someone is trying to wake up the commonwealth to do something about the rogue state of Sri Lanka. Finally things are starting to stir in the outside world and the catalyst may be the illegal impeachment of the chief justice. Rajapaksa is looking at isolation from the democratic world and China and Russia may not be enough to save it from the fallout. With the UNHRC meeting coming up Rajapaksa is likely to tighten the screws on his domestic opponents without mercy. The slide for him will start then and hope he falls sooner rather than later without much bloodshed.

  • 0
    0

    Wow, Some stooges are here brown nosing the brits… Well almost all of them are imported from india for slave labour now learning few english words they try to denigrate the country … Well if don’t like the country go and kiss the queens butt.

    Of course other 10% come from churches that educate those morons to be a 5th column.

    Sl politicos are bad bunch but it does not mean you have to sell the country since 90% of them are rural and poor..

    Quite amazing that CT based clowns that are peddling self interest with out showing their true colours …

  • 0
    0

    One obedient dog aka a British subject from the British gang of robbers and barbarians is complaining about the other gang of robbers that is the leaders of a country robbing it’s own.

    The only differing factor is British were Ruthless barbarians in comparison to Mahinda Rajapakse clan about which this Cleaner is complaining about.

    I think this guy got some INCOME in order to live his life from the special interest groups.

  • 0
    0

    Justice – you live up to the nom du plume you have chosen.

    Senguttuvan

  • 0
    0

    MR was extensively using human rights for his politics years back.That is the curse today.He knows very well about the effectiveness of international community on human rights issues than anybody .He knows that at the end of the day vested interest only matters.That is why he doesn’t care about all these things and keeps on going his own journey.

  • 0
    0

    Towards the end of the 33 year war even neo-colonialists were compelled to accept that LTTE is a terrorist organisation for they have exploded 364 human bombs and killed and maimed tens of thousands of civilians. LTTE virtually asked for their last war thinking they could win. Neo-colonialists helped LTTE in every way they could. They had repeatedly advised MR that Pirapakaran is a master of war hence he cannot be defeated.

    When the end game came to LTTE terrorists after a three year war, neo-colonialists joined together to demand MR should stop the war and talk peace with killers. However, colonialists continue to invade countries and kill terrorists in the name of peace. But there was no peace in any of those countries whereas here in Sri Lanka, we achieved absolute peace and path to progress. It is clear; our opposition stand naked with war mongers. Now neo-colonialists think they can kick Sri Lanka out of commonwealth and let separatists achieve what LTTE couldn’t with war.

    Neo colonialists are parasites. They come not to help us but rob us as they had been doing throughout history. Steadily and readily, Sri Lanka should align with its friends and not with enemies like Sanders to face any eventuality. There is no other way. People will stand by MR.
    Leela

  • 0
    0

    It is very perturbing to note the sorry decline of the standards of governance in Sri Lanka. This must be taken as a timely call to hold the administration to account. The government spokespeople are very slick in blaming all adverse feedback against it as belonging to ‘international conspirators’ and ‘NGO-s’ but this should be exposed for the fallacy that it is. The international community must put their heads together (via their in situ foreign service reps) to understand the core issues behind this growing crisis, sift fact from fiction, identify the key requirements to set things right and then institute necessary action to coax this requisite level of good governance from the ‘rulers’.

    The sorry fact is that there are a large number of Sri Lankans smarting from the tyrannical rule laced with pay-offs (for silence or cooperation) followed by threats of violence or worse in the guise of the very real threat of grave physical harm (often dismissed away under the oft mouthed platitude, “the people will take care of those who are unpatriotic, so what can the government do”); which has effectively resulted in any real protestations being extinguished like a damp squib (e.g. FUTA, and now the BASL).

    Governments such as those in Australia, Canada and the UK should ask themselves why there is such a preponderance of Sri Lankans desperately fleeing their home country if all is hunky dory and paradisiacal there; and whether things might not be improved for their own border and economic security if they take shared responsibility to discipline this set of unprincipled ‘elected’ rulers who have now manoeuvred themselves into an almost impregnable situation which is set to bring dynastic succession with concomitant misery for generations for everyone but them.

  • 0
    0

    Didn’t you ban Fiji?.

    See how well they are going.

    Good Bye and Good Riddance.

  • 0
    0

    Dear Sanders,

    We have never relied on the Commonwealth for anything. We are self sufficient now. We produce our own rice, and if at all we have to import oil, that we can get from our ME friends. Everything else can come from China. Ask our defense secretary, he gave it tight to the US Ambassador.

    We won the war without the support of the west. You people have enough on your own hands. Go fix the Malvinas issue or Diego Gracia issue, instead of poking into our affiars. What is important to us is the sovereignty of the country. We will mind you, do whatever it takes to do that even if it means we become a pariah state.

    Our H.E the president has calculated that the spineless CMAG would not pass strictures on us. We gave the UNHRC tight last time, we transferred the ambassador in Gebeva, we have done nothing with the LLRC report, and so on. If we listen to you people we will still be a colony of the GB. So mark my words your polite words wont get you anywhere. We are impervious to restrained rebukes. We have our own way of doing things, and if you would take a wee bit of your time please listen to our great leaders of Rupavahini and ITN. You will learn a few things yourself.

    We have a popular government of the people. We may not be subtle, our politicians may not have the finesse, but they are doing the right thing. Chasing the corrupt CJ was handled badly, but we got rid of her didn’t we? Didn’t you notice the liberated masses celebrating on the streets. Do you think they will light fire crackers if they didn’t agree?

    I can assure you we will have the meeting of the commonwealth even if only the Chinese attend. So bury your head in the sands as your name rightfully suggests
    Regards
    Gona

    • 0
      0

      Commonwealth is doing nothing for those members like Sri Lanka.Rajiv Gandhi threatened to leave commonwealth when Margaret Thacher did not want to do anything against apartheid South Africa. What are we gaining as a commonwealth member?
      As their closest neighbor Irish left them many years ago. It is high time that we think about the pros and cons of this organization.We can leave them as a dignified nation who would not tolerate foreign interference in our matters.
      They can take the meeting to some another country.Let the British queen have a party with her clowns.

    • 0
      0

      “Go fix the Malvinas issue or Diego Gracia issue”… let me add the chagos islanders (who are still waiting to return to their stolen land from where they were forcefully deported en-masse).

  • 0
    0

    You are right SHAME ON THE COMMONWEALTH

  • 0
    0

    Once again, the Rajapaksa supporters can attack the UK and the messenger here.

    The bottom lines is, there is a lot of truth in what they say. Let’s not get caught up in hating the messenger,
    while giving our very own culprits a pass again. There is no doubt the Rajapaksa’s have dodged, stalled, and lied, about what they have been accused of. They owe the people of Sri Lanka explanations, and most importantly accountability, for what they keep denying about. The people voted these thugs in, and they owe the Sri Lankan people basic honesty. How long do they think they can get away with murder?

  • 0
    0

    My my, what do we have here then? The descendants of imported coolies of the colonials yearning for the ‘good old days’ of British rule? How interesting.

  • 0
    0

    This is a serious development.Sri Lanka was a founding member of the commonwealth.Sri Lanka was a well respected member and the Sri Lankan pass port was respected around the world ,over the Indian and Parkistani pass ports.The amount of aid Sri Lanka received from the commonweath countries is a lot. The amount of commonwealth scolarships given to Sri Lanka ,is not matched by any other group of countries.There are some people who have not seen what the commonwealth is doing in the world or are not wanting ro accept the facts.Sri Lanka’s problem is not having a viable opposition to the ruling party.People should try and organise the opposition ,so the government will not go on like the way they are doing.They should have an honest opposition leader who can organise the opposition.Mr.Wicramasingha should consider his position and if he got any feeling for the country,should side step from his position.I can remember when Pakistan was kicked out of the commonwealth, the problems they had in the international arena. Some of the people who think China is the answer should read the report made by Justice T.S.Fernando as the chairman of the UN comitee on atrocities commited in Tibet by the chinese.It was just not a chinese take away.

  • 0
    0

    The writer should go to Canada…find out why the Chiefs of Canada’s First Nations – ( Native-Canadian ) people are on a hunger-fast….against the legacy of Institutional Racism & discrimination their people face in Canada….

    Steve Harper…YOU have internal Human Rights problems…so stay back in Canada….take care of them….before lecturing Sri Lanka …a vibrant Democracy….
    and the ONLY Nation to defeat Terrorism in the 21st Century…

    Every Nation in the Commonwealth has an equal vote…
    Thus Sri Lanka has the same rightfull place within the Commonwealth…from the Largest Populated …India ( 1,300,000,000 ) to the smallest population…Tuvalu ( 10,000 )…

    Nations have had their Commonwealth Membership suspended…then reinstated…ie..Nigeria – Pakistan – South Africa…
    Former British Colonies have also left ….ie..Ireland – Fiji – Zimbabwe…

    …and the Former British Colony…USA…NEVER joined the Commonwealth…
    absolute proof…in the case of the USA…that Commonwealth membership is not necessary to become a Economic & Military Super Power….

    Most of the comments are negative…posted by the virulently ant-SL diapora….
    ” Dogs may bark….but Sri Lanka marches on to glory…”

  • 0
    0

    Common Wealth exists? This is an irrelevant entity both spineless and toothless. There were many many “opportunities” that the commonwealth could have demonstrated or restored their relevance by being cognizant and active in the region. Tell me what they did during the two Marxist up-rises in Sri Lanka, the separatist war, the many “real constitutional crisis” in Sri Lanka when the election was postponed, and referendum’s were substituted for elections? What did they do when the constitution was rewritten such that according to JR.J, what all the parliament couldn’t do was a gender-reassignment (Alas… it was dome plenty and rampant elsewhere in the world even at that time), which by now has grown to be able to reassign public not only the gender, but also the specie, from “human to donkey” to be specific. None of this is the foe of the politicians, but the people. Our leaders and officials rise from the society, and in many ways its their choice. Should there be two things that we should learn from the “Americans who’s scared and only focus is a Jihad against Sri Lanka”, may be from Thomas Jefferson.
    “Tyranny is defined as that which is legal for the government but illegal for the citizenry.”,
    “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.”
    “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.”
    “Information is the currency of democracy.”
    “Above all things I hope the education of the common people will be attended to ; convinced that on their good sense we may rely with the most security for the preservation of a due degree of liberty.”

    Must I say any further what the need of the hour is?

  • 0
    0

    With all reasoning on Imperialism and sucking the national wealth out of the country in colonial era; still I wonder why our leaders go running to the Buckingham when HM Queen asks them to come.

    • 0
      0

      Dear Surasena, Because they are spineless leaders with no self respect!

  • 0
    0

    I think Both UN, CW, USA and the world community should come down hard on President Rajapakse for him to think serious what the International community means Business and not to take them for granted.

    All this time President Rajapakse not only hoodwinked the International community , but also humiliated and made them looking fools.

    From hoodwinking UN, CW on LLRC and human right issue upto fooling India on false implementing 13 + Rajapakse think he can keep on humiliating them and making them a laughing stock and get away from the promises he gave.

    Please see the following web. what Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN Dr. Palitha Kohona has questioned the value of the Commonwealth when he was asked to comment on the criticism of the impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake by the Commonwealth.

    MARA is questioning on the validity of UN, CW, USA and other countries who helped him to win the terrorist war.

    Therefore it is time for International community to come down hard on Rajapakse Regime until it RE-instate CJ Dr.Shirani Bandaranayake.
    —————————————————————————————————————–
    Some of the Measures could be.
    ———————————–———————

    1)Total travel Ban on President ,Govt.Ministers and their Families….as most of their official Meetings are mere Pleasure trips wasting people’s money.

    2) Freeze all aid given to Govt. and direct them through INGO’s.

    3)Either freeze All IMF, WB Lonas to GOSL or be given only on condition and supervision that GOVT. should use them only on people’s needs and should stop importing duty free vehicles for Ministers and Govt.Goons and on fake and wasteful development projects.

    4)Restriction on Tourists visiting Sri Lanka while totally Freeze Govt.Ministers and officials travelling to those countries.

    5) Cancel CHOGM and ban Sri Lanka participating from CW,UN and international conferances, functions and meetings.

    6) Trade restrictions and freeze concessions given to GOSL.

    7)Direct International Projects and help given to Minority communities and people in need, such as building houses, community centers and Childrens and adult homeless shelters etc without giving a penny to Sri Lankan Government. (Remember Tsunami Donation Scandal Involving President Rakapakse and Ex.CJ Sarath N. Silva).

    8)Direct nutrition programmes, health care and education on needy people only be given through International supervision By-passing GOSL.

    9)Freeze all Foreign Personal bank accounts, fund accounts, assets, real estate,Businesses,Farms,Land, Black money and shares invested by all Govt. Ministers and their family members.

    10) Re-do Constitition taking out all the draconian clauses that make the President or the Prime minister absolute Tyranny, Dictator and a Family Monopoly Dynasty.

    11)Remove all Convicted Thugs, Criminals, Bribary Takers, Murderers, Drug Dealers, Sex perverts, Illicit contract gainers, Casino Owners, sex offenders, Money and property stealers and others from presidency, Prime Minister and parliament Ministerial and MP’s positions.

    12) GIVE A SPECIFIC DEADLINE DATE TO CHANGE ALL OF THE ABOVE AND IF GOSL FAILS TO SHOW THOSE CHANGES FROM NOW ON AND FAILS TO IMPLEMENT THEM BY THAT SPECIFIC DATE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY SHOULD USE BOTH INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL PRESSURE FOR REGIME CHANGE WHILE COMING TO RESCUE CITIZEN FROM HARMING BY GOSL.

  • 0
    0

    Dear Mr.Sanders,

    Thank you for your contribution which is an excellent assessment of the status quo in Sri Lanka and to any right minded person it makes a lot of sense. The birth of Commonwealth is post colonialism and it is a group of Civilised Nations formed to share and cherish common values and Sri Lanka up to now had no problems appreciating its values.
    The critics are recent like mushrooms and oppotunists and it is quite evident whose side they are on and whose interest they are trying to protect.
    There is no Rule of Law in Sri Lanka and it is mob rule and where else in the Civilised World would you find Supreme Court Judges being threatened with sticks and knives for interpreting the law and their vehicles being subjected to stop and search.
    The critics are not mature enough to take the criticisms and learn from it instead are trying to justify their failings an use thuggery .
    Dr.Wijeyabahu hit the nail on the head and there is a lot of benefit to Sri Lanka but the arguments in favour of cancelling the meeting far outweighs the benefits. Just think of the publicity coup MR will try to derive from the gathering by being photographed with her Majesty The Queen and other world leaders who have no blood on thier hands and he must not be afforded that luxury.
    There is I am sure a silent majority of civilised Sri Lankans whose interest is paramount but who are afraid to talk for fear of reprisals as we have seen from the attack on Judges.
    To help them to bring Sri Lanka back into the league of civilsed nations The Commonwealth must act decisively and cancel the meeting to send a clear singal enough is enough.

  • 0
    0

    Mahela, i am laughing at your wish list. Please use your real Tamil name instead of been a coward and using a Sinhala name

  • 0
    0

    Oh Portugal | Oh Netherland | Oh British |….. When our Forefathers fought for our Independence…..they would have never dremt that our country is going to be Occupied by Our Own Power Hungry, Power Crazy, Greedy, selfish,Pervert, Thug, Murderers, Drug dealers, Thieves, Uneducated , Uncultured, Uncivilised OUR OWN SINHALA PAK…….YA PRESIDENTS, PRIME MINISTERS AND THE PARLIAMENT WHO SCREWED THEIR OWN SINHALA RACE AND THE MINORITY RACES, USING THEIR POWER AND PRIVILEGES TO SATISFY THEIR OWN SELFISH, SADISTIC DESIRES AT THE EXPENSE OF IT’S OWN CITIZENS AND THE COUNTRY.

    Our Children will curse us if we allow these sadistic crooks to stay in power any more.

    it is our obligation to chase these Blood sucking Leeches crooks who live on POOR RIZANAS BLOOD MONEY ever sucking people’s blood and country for their own pleasure.

    It is time to Bur…n the parliament for good and give the Country to Supreme court and to qualified, honest and professionals to Govern.

    TO HELL WITH PARLIAMENT BOTH GOVERNMENT AND OPPOSITION CROOKS WHO EVER LIVE ON PEOPLES PIN PADI WASTING RESOURCES AND INCURRING MEGA LOSSES TO ALL THE CORPORATIONS THEY RUN….AND BORROWING HEAVILY FROM OTHER COUNTRIES.

    IT’S TIME FOR CHANGE.

    • 0
      0

      Mahela…..NONE of your wishes against Sri Lanka & President MR…
      will come true….
      Us Sri Lankan Patriots will see to that…

      Your leader…the “Sun Goat”…is no more…

  • 0
    0

    MR is all team will our country to dog we all must save our country no law on country for childern if you are true Sri lankan by makiing rods what MR an his team as given to this. country

  • 0
    0

    Sri Lanka is one if the respected nations in the Commonwealth. The Sinhala ant government Traitors, the NGOs the Tiger supporting Diaspora and the politicians in the west duly financed and looked after by the Diaspora have tarnished the good name of the country. Also stupid statements such as the White Flag utterings by the Ex General turned saboteur and the dodgy Ex CJ have all done their part in tarnishing the Motherland. However Sri Lanka has a very able leader Mahinda who has the strength of character to fight the evil forces and withstand any issue or any pressure. SriLanka is also blessed with a good leader of the opposition Ranil who is the only decent man in the opposition. Though Ranil is a strong critic of the government he does his criticism in a responsible manner. I hope both these good leaders will stand together to safe guard the Nation. The Commonwealth should appreciate that Mahinda and his government eradicated the evil terrorist forces and brought peace to the country.

  • 0
    0

    Did Mahela miss in his descriptive list pimps and comfort women.
    Please don’t try a Guy Falkes on our beautiful Parliament Building.
    It is such a shame to be ungrateful to the Japanese and the memory of
    Geoffrey Bawa – the Architect.

    The entire nation will be with you if your good deed is done outside.

    Senguttuvan

  • 0
    0

    Sri Lanka will continue to move forward, if you say it is going backward then you do not know what is politics in the strategic location of the Indian Ocean, but listens to the foreigners who are the masters of dividing and fooling others. I have an obligation to support the President as a Sri Lankan intellectual. I do not take arms against fellow countrymen. I do not join with the foreigners to undermine fellow countrymen either. I work with fellow countrymen to change or develop the country. I lead others by my intellectuality and good deeds. Lets ask ourselves one important question. What is the value of the Democracy and Commonwealth? The Chinese do not believe in democracy, nor part of the Commonwealth, but they are advancing much faster than us. The Westerners ruled and ripped off our country for more than 440 years, but they never done anything to eliminate the caste systems, gender inequality, and racial, language and religious discriminations. Because they knew it will continue to eat us and keep us under them forever. Furthermore, India the largest democratic country by its population created the Tamil armed groups to keep Sri Lanka under its wings. However, India also understood that letting the Tamil armed groups grow beyond its control would be detrimental to India. This is the reason Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi reached a very good political solution for the Tamils’ issues in Sri Lanka under the Indo-Sri Lanka agreement. Unfortunately the LTTE did not see what Rajiv Gandhi did, because of the Tamil diaspora. The 2002 ceasefire agreement between the LTTE and the Sri Lankan government also broken by the LTTE. A reasonable political minded person knows that Prabhakaran would not have fought against India without the help of the Westerners through the Tamil diaspora. And also Prabhakaran would not have broken the 2002 ceasefire agreement with the Sri Lankan government without the help of the Westerners through the diaspora. If you can answer the following questions you will know who have most of the Tamils’ and Sinhalese’s blood on their hands. Who have been deliberately stopping the peace agreements? Who have been guiding the diaspora? Who have been fuelling “hate and bitterness” among the Tamils and Sinhalese? Who have been facilitating the funding to the LTTE, even though they had everything within their reach to stop money get transferred from the diaspora to the LTTE. The answer is Western political minds through their intelligence network. Think about the lost lives since 1987, think about the suffering since 1987, think about the lost opportunities to develop the country and people’s lives. The Westerners created bitter divisions among the Tamils, Sinhalese, and the Indians through the diaspora. The Westerners act like peace makers, but they are not. They talk about democracy and human rights to fool others, in order to turn people against their own governments to destabilise the developing countries. The truth is, the Westerners have a vital interest to divide every community and every country to rule others. There is a most ugliest face underneath their white faces, it is pure evil. Not many people have the ability to see their real face, but few of us do through our hard work and sacrifices. Ask Julian Assange and Bradley Manning, they will tell you more about the Westerners evil side. Julian Assange and Bradley Manning are Westerners, but they exposed the truth and ended up in a prison in the US and stuck inside an embassy in London, UK. Some Sri Lankans and some other Asians are backing the Westerners for their own self-centred lifestyle, they don’t care about their own people, or their motherland.

    The removal of the CJ is not something new in the world, it happens in the world, including in the United States. However, some eliments may use this opportunity to bring chaos into the country, in order to achieve their ulterior motives. Remember, few eliments were fuelling the civil war and benefited by the war, but not the Tamils or Sinhalese. We must not let that happen again. The president appointed the CJ, the 2/3 of the parliament wanted her to leave the office. If I was the CJ, I would have resigned once the parliament decided to remove me from the office. Taking this matter to the UN is not advisable. It is a new beginning for the CJ. The Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake has a huge potential. She has a lot to give for the country. She must get involved in politics and bring new ideas to the table. Lets people decide whether she is worthy or not. She must not go to the UN, but go to her people and put her ideas forward, in order to develop the country. She must not go to the enemies who divide others, invade others’ countries and kill millions of people to keep themselves on top. Do not go to the devil to get justice. I encourage every Sri Lankan to bring forth good ideas to the table to develop the country. If you want to get involved in politics to help the foreigners then you will fail utterly as Sarath Fonseka. Mr Fonseka recently reiterated that he needs outside help to topple the government. I am extremely disappointed by his statement. I urge every Lankan to stop listening to the enemies who divide us, they use every opportunity to bring chaos into the country to rule us. We must understand what is missing, then find a solution within us, looking outside will create more problem and chaos than a solution. The country has been fighting for thirty years, people are free from fighting for only three years. Just wait for few more years, be patient, you all went through the bloody war for thirty years for nothing. The Sri Lankans have been suffering from the independence, due to lack of smart leadership. As intellectuals, we are sharing our ideas with the leaders to make them act wisely, it is process it will take time. I know very well about the parliament members, can we change those MP’s mindset overnight? I am also well aware that Rajapaksa brothers are dominating the country. Does it really matter if Rajapaksa brothers are developing the country? The extremely talented Sri Lankans will continue to direct the country leaders into the right path. The President does not have an answer for everything, but he has the ability to deal with the external threats better than any other leader, this is extremely important ability, because Sri Lanka is in a strategic location, the past, the present and the future superpowers want to influence the country. Therefore, Lets approach matters very pragmatically for sake of the innocent people who have died due to the bloody war. The Tamils are in the bottom, because of their disunity. I never seen such a unity among the Tamils as I seen among the Rajapaksa brothers. May be we need such a close family ties to overcome the Westerners’ and Indians’ divide and conquer strategy. The Indians and the Westerners can easily fool the Tamils, because of their disunity. People like us who are enlightened and committed to bring a change can’t do anything. I am isolated by the Western governments. The propaganda against me are shocking, even my family members, relatives, and friends believe the Westerners more than me. Due to my writing the Westerners do not even allow me to get a job, they did not even allow me to sell my house for a profit, because they knew the money will be used to expose their evil deeds. They are keeping me in financial hardship and perfect isolation by their dirty propaganda. My fellow Tamils are keeping silence, they gave millions of dollars to the LTTE, but nobody would support me to have a website to expose the Westerners evil deeds. The Tamils are prepared to undermine their fellow Tamils, in order to cater their own self-centered lifestyles. We all know how the Tamil armed groups fought and destroyed each other, the TNA has its own agenda, the TGTE has its own agenda, Global Tamil Forum has its own agenda. They all concern about being leaders, they are not concern about the Tamils. If the TNA is leading the Tamils, then why TGTE leader call himself as the Prime Minister? I am ashamed to call myself a Tamil. I really don’t believe the Westerners could have isolated me this much if I am a Chinese, because the Chinese are very close to each other, this is the reason the West could not invade China, or could not stop China overtaking the United States economically.

    The Westerners ruled and ripped off the Indian Subcontinent for more than 440 years, but they never done anything to eliminate the caste systems, gender inequality, and racial, language and religious discriminations. Four hundred years is very long time, at least 10-12 generations. The Westerners could have done a lot to the Indian Subcontinent, but they deliberately done little to keep the Asians under them. The Westerners have a lot to talk about the Indian Subcontinent’s failure than China’s communism, but they won’t talk about it, because it will highlight their deliberate misleading to keep the Asians under them, plus the Indian Subcontinent is not a threat to their dominant power, but China. “English are to blame for India’s backwardness” published by the Dominion Post, written by Philip Collins, on page B5, Dated January 5, 2013. The Dominion Post is one of the major newspapers in New Zealand. Not all the Westerners are naive or blind, there are people like Philip Collins who sees the Westerners’ evil side. The Indian Subcontinent has enough intellectuals to develop the Subcontinent, but the system won’t allow the intellectuals to lead. Therefore, the intellectuals leave the Subcontinent and develop the Western Countries. This system was developed by the Westerners, in order to keep the Indian Subcontinent poor and weak. We fought against the Westerners to have our freedom, but we still trust them, listen to them and run our political system according to them. This is a huge disaster. The Indians are too scared to change the manufacturing sector, because they don’t want another East India Company. However, they are happy to run a political system recommended by the Westerners. The Chinese are really smart, because they have chosen a political system to suits their culture and ideology. The Chinese did not choose a political system recommended by their enemies. We must stop listening and trusting our enemies. We must develop a system according to our culture and ideology, like the Chinese did, otherwise the Indian Subcontinent will be struggling forever. We must depart from the old system and bring some changes. Being part of the Commonwealth is only helping us to stay behind. Time for us to move forward, our policies are not helping the Indian Subcontinent to move forward as China. Am I recommending a communist system? Not at all, but we need some changes, if we come up with something good, the Indians may even consider our system in the future. We must find a way to lift the whole Indian Subcontinent. India can’t try something new, because it is too big. In India 627 million people do not have access to toilets, the Indian politicians do not even provide basic needs to their own people, but they believe in God and democracy, they are vegetarians too, but love their bribes. Sri Lanka is a small country, and its leaders are committed to their people more than the Indian leaders, at least the Sri Lankan leaders provide access to toilets to their people. We must try something new and help the whole Indian Subcontinent, otherwise we will be betraying our future generations.

    • 0
      0

      Not only you but many in the bunch are obliged to bend their heads to MR it is all because you all enjoy the perks offered to you. Talk to SN Silva, press men and women so you will get more about the bribes that MR has offered to them to stay partially to them.

      But all these will be short lived mechanisms of the rascals that over 50% of the general public now feel. Wait and see how it would end up for him soon. – That will be the day of law and dignity respecting folks – Jaya

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.