UNP MP Mangala Samaraweera speaking today said although Sri Lanka stands as one country following the end of the war, the governance system of the Rajapaksa regime has created two worlds within this single state.
Speaking at a media breifing today, MP Samaraweera lashed out at the government and held them responsible for the creation of two worlds within the country – one to which less than 1% of the population belongs and is comprised of the close relatives and friends of the Rajapaksas and the other in which 99% of the population comprising of the common people stand.
“One is the world of the super luxurious – where its people pay Rs. 200 per hopper, where they are able to take the law of the country into their hands and where they oust innocent people from their homes and acquire the premises to build casinos and hotels. In the other world meanwhile, the burden of the cost of living has crushed the masses and dragged them to the point where entire families are now committing suicide,” he said.
Speaking further on the economic lows that Sri Lanka has fallen to, MP Samaraweera said that despite the rapid development projects carried out by the government, close to 42% in the country live on a daily wage that is less than Rs. 275.
He went on to highlight the plight of state institutions, pointing out nearly 46 state institutions are presently in debt to which includes Rs. 419 million by the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation and Rs. 44.3 million by Ceylon Electricity Board.
“These figures reflect the poor financial mangement and discipline of the Rajapaksa regime,” he asserted.
He also heavily criticised the nepotism and favouritism prevalent in awarding appointments in the state sector services, particularly the foreign service.
“It is time for the people of this country to rise against this injustice. People in Uva should use their vote on September 20 against the injustice, corruption and thuggery of the Rajapaksa regime,” he said while adding that apart from working towards strengthening the UNP, the time has come to build a common platform that goes beyond party politics and bring together all forces that oppose the Rajapaksa regime.
He said the government is preparing to distribute Rs. 2500 per family in Uva province within the next few days to win over votes.
“This money after all is not the private funds of Rajapaksas – they are tax payers’ money. But the people of Uva should follow the example set by the Northern province voters – they defeated the government using their vote,” MP Samaraweera added.
When inquired of the media reports that have been circulating regarding his opposition to the decision made by Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to award the UNP Deputy Leadership to UNP MP Sajith Premadasa, MP Samaraweera said, “I have always fought for princples, not against individuals. In 2007 when I was asked to rejoin the government I rejected the invitation based on principles. So even with Sajith I dont have any issues with him as a person,” he said.