By Grusha Andrews –
We are all looking for a hero. For hope. Our leaders loot our money, bond scam, and kill journalists, send rockets to space, appoint fake Prime Ministers in fly by night constitutional coups, spread religious extremism and deforest our earth. They do as quacks and astrologers advice and bathe statues with milk and perfumed waters in India.
When the constitutional coup of October 2018 happened people wanted to believe that at least some good came out of it for the largest democratic party in Sri Lanka, the United National Party (UNP). The UNP loyalists, tired of not having a UNP President in over 30 years thought of their ‘go-to’ answer: Sajith Premadasa. Finally, they thought, our opportunity to escape the jinx of Ranil’s unending defeats. A breath of fresh air, all those allegations of illegal excavating archeological treasures, demolition of Buddha statues, weren’t really proven and the then President’s son was never convicted, right? We can gloss over all that and label him our hope, they thought. After all, he elocutes English, he is educated, Ranil’s much wronged victim, the UNP’s messiah.
Well, they thought wrong.
Let’s go fact by fact.
Not A Graduate Of London School Of Economics and Political Science!
To quote Sajith’s own website: “A graduate of the London School of Economics (LSE) and Political Science of the University of London, his degree covered the areas of economics, politics and international relations. Following his BSc at LSE, Sajith decided to pursue a Master’s degree in Public Management at the University of Maryland, near Washington DC”.
If one dissects the convoluted words, it is obvious that Sajith never did graduate from LSE. The name of his degree is never mentioned, glossing over the truth with the words “areas covered”. In October 2013, Colombo Telegraph, in an exclusive exposé revealed that the educational status popularized in his website, Facebook page and paid biographies written, claiming that he graduated from LSE, was a lie. Sajith Premadasa accepted to Colombo Telegraph that he never graduated and an aegrotat “degree” was all he had.
What Is An Aegrotat “Degree”?
The aegrotat degree is a British tradition of awarding a degree to a candidate under the presumption that he or she would have satisfied the standard required for that degree, if not for intervening circumstances such as serious ill health or even death. It is, therefore, an exemption to the normal definition of a degree as an honors degree with a classification or a pass degree without classification.
It is in essence a document issued to a student who remained registered in a university, was not expelled, and did not have the capacity to finish the course work of the degree.
An aegrotat “degree” does not denote any competence of the person for his registered course, because by definition it is issued to a person who never did obtain the education, required to graduate. Simply said, it is a document issued on shallow logic such as “talls for security – shorts for labourer” which Sajith Premadasa is quite familiar with.
Sajith: The Measles Medical Miracle
Speaking to Colombo Telegraph in 2013, Sajith Premadasa acknowledged that he had only sat for his first year exams at LSE because he had been “sick with measles and then a paralysis of his legs which prevented him from sitting for further exams”. His official website cleverly evades the year of his graduation from LSE. But extrapolating, one can estimate that he was in LSE between 1987 and 1992 because he finished high school in 1986 and was in university of Maryland USA in 1993 “studying for his Masters”.
According to the official epidemiological data of the United Kingdom, confirmed by Public Health England (PHE), there were no reported cases of Adult Measles in otherwise healthy adults in the UK between 1987 and1992. According to PHE, the oldest child to contract Measles in the UK during this time was 13 years old.
Further, lower limb paralysis as a complication of Adult Measles is exceptionally rare and does not last more than two weeks according to the systematic reviews and meta analyses published in peer reviewed journal articles that have analyzed global epidemiology of Measles in the last two centuries.
If Sajith’s was an ultra-secretive case of Adult Measles (a common childhood disease) resulting in paralysis preventing him from attending LSE for three full years, he is an amazing specimen, given that he walks just fine now. This case of Adult Measles that escaped the eyes of the vigilant British public health system, makes him not a political case study. He is a Medical case study.
However, these are only the independently verifiable data. The author is not privy to the personal medical records that are legally and ethically the confidential documents of Sajith Premadasa. These verifications have been carried out, comparing the statements issued by Sajith Premadasa himself about his illness to Colombo Telegraph with published official health statistics of the British Government.
Sajith Has No Masters In Public Management From Maryland University
The claim made by himself that he obtained a Master’s in Public Administration is also a blatant lie. In spite of the official websites, Facebook pages and paid biographies’ claims, Sajith Premadasa neither finished his MSc, nor graduated. In fact it was a “facilitated” period of a quasi- internship (which begs the question- “internship for what, exactly?”) done in the USA.
A Question Of Integrity
The constitution of Sri Lanka does not spell out any educational qualification requirement to be a member of parliament. However it warrants that he be of sane mind. There is a general erosion of the moral fabric of our society and there is a dangerous loss of faith of the public in politicians who have exhausted the public with day light robberies of public funds, lack of transparency and blatant lying.
Whether Sajith Premadasa has a degree from LSE or a Masters from Maryland University is less of an issue compared to the lack of integrity of Sajith Premadasa and his paid cronies who glorify him as the messiah of the UNP. A person who is a fundamental liar about his bio data is unlikely to deliver Sri Lanka to an era of integrity, good governance or prosperity.
No Inheritance, No Salary, No Petrol- Yet So Much Give Away Money?
The besotted UNPers, tired of Ranil and his antics are dreamy eyed about Sajith Premadasa. Our ears hurt listening to his repeated claims that he does not draw a salary, nor use an official vehicle or petrol. Sajith Premadasa’s father was born to abject poverty in to a household in Keselwatte in Central Colombo, home of slums, poverty and inequality.
Sajith Premadasa, therefore does not come from old money.
He has never done any job other than being a parliamentarian. And he does not collect a salary for the one job he had been doing. He does not appear to own any proclaimed business. However, whenever he visits a rural temple he donates 50,000 rupees of his own money to the temple. Further he donates lakhs to schools, charities and voters. Where does this money come from? Does money grow on trees in the Premadasa garden? Only someone minting money, like in a fictitious novel can have this sort of disposable wealth.
Sajith: A Root Cause Of UNP’s Erosion
The number one cause of UNP’s unsalvable erosion and degeneration is unarguably the undemocratic in-party politics of Ranil Wickremesinghe. His pig headed and leech like hold on to the party leadership created unprecedented and repeated defeats of the UNP. He alienated the rural voter base and the patriotic voters by coming through as a non–nationalistic, western valued misfit to our culture.
The main workload of tarnishing the image of Ranil was singlehandedly initiated and carried by the Maharaja Network, predominantly the Sirasa TV. The biggest lackey of Sirasa TV in the UNP was and is, Sajith Premadasa. The other lackeys were of the caliber of S M Marikkar, Buddhika Pathirana and Harsha De Silva.
Whilst Sirasa TV was executing unethical journalism, stooping to unbelievable depths of mudslinging and character assassination of the leader of the party, Sajith, the aspirant of leadership remained the darling of the TV channel. He went from door to door holding his characteristic pocket meetings criticizing the leader, portraying him as a stooge of the west, destroying his image. By doing this repeatedly for good 15 years Sajith has finally made a formidable contribution to thinning out the rural support for the UNP. These criticisms were telecasted over and over spilling the negativity to the whole country. Sajith today is a victim of the unwinnable UNP that he helped created with Sirasa TV.
Sajith: UNP’S Anti-Campaigner
In his 19 year long career in politics Sajith has not engaged in one cerebral discussion in a single TV program on governance, constitutional reforms, economics, ethnic conflict, international relations or policy reform. He has not contributed in any way to TV debates that drive the crucial election campaigns. All he has ever done is engaging in the anti-campaign, undoing the party efforts and running to Hambantota, criticizing Ranil during all elections.
He has been engaging in Rajapaksa style politics “gifting” houses as he pleases and naming “Udagam” after this man and that. Recently Poddala Jayantha, the brutalized journalist scathingly told Sajith pretty much to go to hell and reminding him of the track record of his father, infamous for sanctioning murders of prominent journalists during his rule.
Sajith: Darling Of Sirasa, Darling Of Sirisena
Whose darling you are will also reveal whose enemy you are. If you watch the video below, it will summarize the phenomenon called Sajith. President Ranasinghe Premadasa was the last president in three decades to call himself “Shrimath” (“exalted Sir”). He was a man oppressed by caste, social inequality and a victim of the English speaking “cultured” men who imparted their superiority complexes to give him a massive inferiority complex. Sajith of late is bestowing the honorary prefix of “Shrimath” in front of Maithripala Sirisena, without Sirisena ever asking anyone to do so. Sajith shrewdly understands the mentality of a man who has climbed the social ladder from small origins. If you listen in the video below the love returned to Sajith by “Srimath” Sirisena, it will rest this article’s case.