4 December, 2020

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Sri Lankan Presidential Elections 2015: An Initial Forecast

By Siri Gamage

Dr. Siri Gamage

Dr. Siri Gamage

As we approach the final week of campaigning for the Presidential election, the political messages of both coalitions are becoming clearer. So are the strategies of both coalitions and trends in voter sentiment as revealed through some surveys and public attendance in political rallies. Defections from the ruling coalition have dominated the political stage though there have been some notable defections from the opposition to the government side also sparingly. As a result of nearly 26 MPS defecting from the ruling coalition, including those from the SLFP and other parties, the stage is set for a sharper contest between Rajapaksas and the rest who are opposing them. The emerging trend seems to be for ‘a change’ in the governance of Sri Lanka rather than maintaining the status quo. People who I have spoken to in the country and elsewhere refer to a discernible ‘mood change’ among the voters even though some admire the development work accomplished by the Rajapaksas during their rein. They also refer to a greater sense of frustration among the average folk due to the reported corruption of politicians, partisan nature of governance, family rule, cost of living pressures and the disregard for rule of law by those in authority.

One side is arguing for change in the governance style and processes adopted under the executive presidential system in the midst of charges of nepotism, corruption, bad governance, and politicisation of institutions while the other side is arguing for stability and national security against perceived enemies of the nation, ie. The Western countries, Tamil diaspora elements. The opposition coalition has been strengthened by the support it is receiving from a range of minor parties and civic groups while there are reported signs of considerable erosion of the support base of the ruling coalition reflected in the well-planned defections of its allies. Early signs of voter intentions are also starting to creep into the public view via various sources.

MaithriThe information of this author is that there is ‘a growing mood for change’ in the cities and the countryside. This is based on the sense of injustices experienced by people in public life, trend toward authoritarianism, and a whole host of other factors. Instead of voter apathy, a high degree of enthusiasm among voters including in the countryside has been generated by the contest for power led by two SLFP stalwarts leading two coalitions. Will all this translates into a victory by the opposition coalition led by Maithripala? Or will the incumbent be able to pull out a rabbit out of the hat in the last week of electioneering –against all odds – and be able to surprise everybody? To gain an insight, we ought to reflect on the kind of regime in place and the changes opposition parties are seeking.

According to Sasanka Perera who reviews a book by Laksiri Jayasuriya on Electoral Politics in Sri Lanka and the elections, a hybrid regime has been established after the 2010 Presidential and subsequent parliamentary elections (The Island January 15, 2013):

Jayasuriya suggests that the 2010 parliamentary and presidential elections established what he describes as a ‘hybrid regime’ similar to the models that have emerged in South East Asian countries such as Singapore and Malaysia (140; 169). Quoting Levitsky and Way, what Jayasuriya means by this terminology is a regime that “is a mix of authoritarian and democratic elements where formal democratic processes combine with a strong incumbent party that seeks to limit the organizational capacity of the opposition” (169). As Jayasuriya further notes, “although formal democratic institutions such as the legal system and the electoral process are functional and operative, we note, however, that they can be skillfully manipulated in gaining power and maintaining regime dominance” (169).

Perera then states that ‘this observation succinctly places in context the current political climate in Sri Lanka. The net result of this electoral process and its manipulation, as suggested by Jayasuriya is the emergence and consolidation of a veritable ‘one party government’ where the dominant party (which in this case is the Rajapaksa-led SLFP government) due to a large parliamentary majority at its disposal “accompanied by a weakened opposition, gives the government of the day complete access to, and control of, key state institutions and resources which are used to entrench the dominant party” (168)’. It is in such a context that the 2015 Presidential election campaign is being prosecuted by the ruling coalition led by Rajapaksas and the opposition coalition led by Sirisena. Obviously, since the premature announcement of a new election by the President, things have changed. The opposition coalition has been strengthened and the ruling coalition has been weakened by the defections of high profile figures and provincial activists. Political blunders committed by way of arrogant behavior in nationally broadcast TV shows and reported attacks on artists and opposition events and stages can only register negative images of a government campaigning primarily on external factors rather than the opposition’s main complaint about good governance (yaha palanaya), corruption, waste, politicization of the judiciary, public service, academia and even the security forces. Militarisation has been a key issue of discussion along with the restricted freedoms for the media, and wider public.

Forecasting

It is not possible to forecast the results of an election without systematically conducted surveys of voter intentions like in other countries by reputed polling agencies. Nonetheless, we can analyse the results of previous elections and set the outcome of such analysis against the developing context by taking some relevant factors into account.

Thus, one way to forecast the results of forthcoming election is to examine closely the results of the 2010 Presidential election to see where the contestants drew their strengths. The results from 2010 election can be contrasted with politically significant events and issues dominating 2015 election in order to formulate a view about where the trend is? Thus in this article, I am making an attempt to find out the provinces and districts that the current President Mahinda Rajapaksa had a clear, overwhelming majority or a reasonable majority while paying attention to the provinces and districts where the opposition candidate at the time Sarath Fonseka had a majority. Then on the basis of the currently dominant defections, other political issues and events, I make a tentative prediction about the result of the forthcoming election.

In the 2010 elections, Mahinda Rajapaksa received a total of 6,015,934 votes (57.88%) and Sarath Fonseka 4,173,185 votes (40.15%). A gap of about 17.5% points existed between the two. The total polled was 74.49% (Department of Elections 2010). All other candidates secured between 1.00-2.00% of total votes only.

Province and District-wise results of the 2010 Presidential election show the following:

Provinces Where SF was a clear favourite

Eastern Province

Batticaloa (MR 68.93% SF 26.27%)

Digamadulla (MR 47.92% SF 49.94%)

Trincomalee (MR 43.04% SF 54.09%)

(SF was the favourite except in Batticaloa)

 

Northern Province

Jaffna (MR 24.75% SF 63.84%)

Vanni (MR 27.31% SF 66.86%)

(SF was the clear favourite)

 

Provinces where MR was a clear favourite

 

Central Province

Kandy (MR 54.16% SF 43.89%)

Matale (MR 59.74% SF 38.01%)

Nuwara Eliya (MR 43.77% SF 52.14%)

(MR was the favourite except in Nuwara Eliya)

 

Southern Province

Hambantota (MR 67.21% SF 31.20%)

Matara (MR 65.53% SF 32.86%)

Galle (MR 63.69% SF 34.83%)

(MR was the clear favourite)

 

Western province

Colombo (MR 52.93% SF 45.90%)

Gampaha (MR 61.66% SF 37.28%)

Kalutara (MR 63.06% SF 35.43%)

(MR was the clear favourite. Colombo was just above the line)

 

North Western province

Kurunegala (MR 63.08% SF 35.46%)

Puttalam (MR 58.70% SF 39.59%)

(MR was the clear favourite)

 

North Central Province

Anuradhapura (MR 66.32% SF 31.94%)

Polonnaruwa (MR 64.92% SF 33.62%)

(MR was the clear favourite)

 

Uva Province

Badulla (MR 53.23% SF 44.55%

Monaragala (MR 69.01% SF 29.10%)

(MR was the clear favourite in Monaragala. Just above the line in Badulla)

 

Sabaragamuwa Province

Ratnapura (MR 63.76% SF 34.36%)

Kegalle (MR 61.80% SF 36.44%)

(MR was the clear favourite)

The districts where MR had a marginal showing (i.e. above 50 but below 60) were Kandy, Matale, Colombo, Puttalam, and Badulla. In short, MR polled relatively well in 5 districts. However, in Nuwara Eliya MR polled well below 50%.

Districts where MR had a clear and overwhelming majority (i.e. above 60%) were Hambantota, Matara, Galle in the Southern province, Gampaha and Kalutara in the Western province, Kurunegala in North Western Province, Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa in the North Central province, Monaragala in the Uva province, and Rathnapura and Kegalle in the Sabaragamuwa province. In all, 11 districts MR polled very well.

Given these results from the 2010 Presidential elections, and all that has happened since then in the country in terms of key issues being canvassed in the election campaign for 2015 as well as the defections from the ruling party to the opposition and vice versa, a key question to ask is in which of these districts MR will poll substantially below 50%?

To begin with, it is reasonable to assume that in those 5 districts where he polled relatively well (i.e. above 50% but below 60%) and in Nuwara Eliya, the opposition coalition will have a better chance of reaching the goal of moving above 50%. Added factors such as the defection of Navin Dissanayake, some Tamil politicians etc. could contribute to this result along with countrywide dissatisfaction with the regime due to the incumbent factor and the ‘Rajapaksa vs the rest syndrome’ emerging in the electorate. Winning by a large majority in these districts by the opposition can also add substantially to its overall performance in the final countrywide result.

In the 11 districts that MR polled very well in 2010, the battle lines have been drawn between the ruling coalition and the opposition based on significant defections from the ruling party to the opposition. For example, in the Colombo district defections of high profile representatives such as Rajitha Senaratne, Hirunika Premachandra and others can swing the result in the opposition’s way considerably. In the North Central province, the defection of Maithripala Sirisena and all those provincial and Pradesheeya sabha members could have a significant impact on the voter base of MR. This impact can spill over to surrounding provinces also. In the Eastern province, the defections of Muslim Congress, and other Muslim politicians can have a significant impact on the MR voter base. The impact of minor parties like Jathika Hela Urumaya along with Arjuna and Chandrika factors can have an impact on Gampaha district, which is considered part of the Sinhalese Buddhist heartland. In the so-called Dharmapala Belt (suburbs and districts in greater Colombo), this impact may be more visible. Given the recent result of the Uva province council elections, it may be within the reach of the opposition also.

Though there is Sajith Premadasa factor in the Hambantota district, I still believe that MR will perform very well or in fact very well in districts such as Hambantota, Matara, and Galle (due to the war hero factor, Rajapakse factor and Southern development factor), Gampaha (he may still poll above 50% due to Basil factor), North Western Province and the Sabaragamuwa province. (I am not in a position to forecast the effect of defections and any province or district related factors that may contribute to a different election outcome than what is predicted here because of my lack of first hand knowledge about sub-district level political dynamics). Thus in my view, MR could be a clear winner in three provinces (Southern, North Western and Sabaragamuwa). The margin of victory in these three provinces may contribute substantially to his showing in the final election result.  He may pick up some specific districts from other provinces also.e.g. Monaragala, Gampaha.

According to this analysis, the provinces where Maithripala Sirisena, the common candidate, have a clear advantage at this stage seems to be the Central province, Western province, North Central province, Uva province, Eastern and Northern province. All in all, 6 provinces. However, he may not gain a clear majority in some districts within them, e.g. Gampaha.

Given this scenario, the common candidate seems to have the upper hand at this stage simply due to the significance of a series of defections, formation of a broad coalition of parties and groups, the incumbency factor, and the charges being made of MR government on various key issues that is cutting into the voter imagination – even though the government controlled media seems to be working overtime to justify the continuation of current regime. A factor that needs to be included in this scenario is the extent of resources available to the ruling coalition for its election propaganda and the use of state resources and personnel as reported in the media recently. These can change the trends in voter sentiment as well as voting in the final analysis. For example, if voters in districts where the opposition candidate has an edge are prevented from voting by the use of indirect force, this can seriously dent the anticipated results by the common candidate in certain districts and polling areas, e.g. Northern Province, remote polling booths in other districts.

The result from a recent sample survey conducted by two researchers, including one from Colombo University, suggests a victory for the common candidate –though there is a significant portion of undecided voters at this stage (see Colombo Telegraph 02.01.2015). They predict 53% for Sirisena and 44% for Rajapaksa. This is in broad correspondence with my own prediction as mentioned above.

There is also some anecdotal evidence of a ‘mood change’ in the broader electorate this time. A village level supporter of Rajapaksas in the Southern Province recently acknowledged that there is a mood for change among people this time around compared to 2010. He stated that people are intelligent (buddhimat) though they are being bombarded with election propaganda. He also admitted that the opposition candidate is being denied access to public facilities for grounds, meeting halls etc. in the area. Another person from Kandy province indicated that all the customers who visit her shop criticise the present regime on various grounds. Some university educated colleagues who returned from Sri Lanka to Australia recently acknowledge that there is a mood for change but some believe voters will also not forget the infrastructure development work by the Rajapaksas. For example, he cited the Colombo-Katunayake expressway and Colombo-Matara highway. These have shortened travel time between various locations. Yet these returnees were also concerned about the high cost of highways and other mega projects as reported by ruling party insiders who have now defected.

At the conclusion of his review of Jayasuriya’s book, Perera says; In the final analysis, it is clear that at the beginning of electoral politics in the country and well into the mid 1970s, it was possible to witness a “blossoming of ‘party politics’ in a bipolar party system” (141). However, the dream of democratic politics that was initiated by the early generations of Sri Lankan political leaders and achieved up to a point, has been steadily dismantled since the late 1970s…..Within the script of this political tragedy enacted not only by professional politicians but also by academics, university vice chancellors, ordinary thugs, religious leaders and many others, the oligarchic familial politics of the present regime which Jayasuriya describes well in the last chapter of his book is merely the final and the most dangerous moment in this downward spiral.

Given the clear signs emerging from across the country during the final week of campaigning, it is highly probable that the larger electorate has understood this message during the 2015 Presidential election more than it did in the 2010 Presidential election.

I invite those with more intimate experience and knowledge about districts within provinces to expand on this analysis and add more insights so that we are able to obtain a clear picture about the emerging trend in regard to whom out of the two SLFP stalwarts may win the Presidential election.

References

Department of Elections 2013. Presidential Election – 2013, Official Results. Colombo. http://www.slelections.gov.lk/presidential2010/AIVOT.html (Accessed on 2 January 2015).

Gunaruwan, T.A. Jayaweera, D.S. 2015. A Victory for Maithripala is now Probable: Colombo University Researchers, Colombo Telegraph, January 01, 2015 https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/a-victory-for-maithripala-is-now-probable-colombo-university-researchers/(Accessed on 02.01.2015)

Jayasuriya, L. 2012. The Changing Face of Electoral Politics in Sri Lanka (1994-2010) by Laksiri Jayasuriya. Colombo: Social Scientists’ Association, 2012 (second edition).

Perera, S. 2013. Changing Facets of Electoral Politics in Sri Lanka, Colombo Telegraph, January 27 2013 https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/changing-facets-of-electoral-politics-in-sri-lanka/ (accessed on 2nd January 2015)

Perera, S. 2014. Changing Facets of Electoral Politics in Sri Lanka (1994-2010) book review, The Island, January 15, 2013. http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=70444 (accessed on 02.01.2015)

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Latest comments

  • 2
    16

    Not sure about Sira, but his right hand man JHU Boss Rana seems to be getting the jitters. according to the Elite Rag in Colombo, Daily Mirror..

    Rana is willing to back Mahinda .if the latter signs a pact with him to demolish the Indian forced 13 A or al least dilute it.

    Does Rana think Sira will pull it off, and Ranil – Vellala Sambandan pact will create the mini Eelaam under the pretext of 13 A plus.?…

    I mean realistically, Rana and JHU have only 2 bums on the Parliamentary seat against 40 bums from the Elite , Anglican and the Vellas . not even counting additional eleven pure Vellala bums..

    Is Rana frightend that BBS will excommunicate him from Buddasasana,

    What a waste it would be for Jathika Hela Urumaya boss, who pretended to do so much for the Buddhist with the aim of attaining Nirwana…

    • 13
      1

      Sumanasekara shows some signs of having brain cells.. If Mythri propaganda could make some of Sumanasekara type guy’s brain neurons & synapses fire in new directions, Mythri can make Lanka an Ayscharya :-( not really but a respectable member country in the world…

    • 8
      0

      Siri Gamage,

      Starting point of 2010 votes is not good since that is the peak MR popularity time.

      I did some postulations based on last provincial council results.

      UPFA total votes.
      2005 Prez Election = 4.9 mil (4,887,152)
      2010 Prez Election = 6.0 Mil (6,015,934)
      2012/3/4 Provincial council election = 4.9 mil (4,944,572)

      MR’s popularity is on downward trend in recent years and had slid down to 2005 level. Provincial council elections MR used full force and I don’t think MR can get any more votes than that he received on provincial council elections.

      Based on the last provincial council elections most realistic number for MR is 4.8 Million. (since some of provincial council was held on 2012, by 2015 the MR popularity declines from 4.9 Mil to 4.8 Mil.)

      Total number of voters for 2015 is 15 mil.
      expected to vote 74% (in 2010, 74% voted)= 11.1 Mill
      MR will get 4.8/11.1 = 43%
      Rest will go to MY3 6.3 Mil votes = 57%

      If we assume only 70% will vote still MY3 should get 5.7 Mil votes (54%)

      The provincial council election captures more realistic Muslim & tamil vote split between MR & opposition.

      The cross over votes from MR to opposition favours MY3 more.

      My take is MY3 may hit close or above 60% with the cross overs factored.

      • 2
        0

        bakaladasa

        Fraud Factor. How to estimate? Will it make the difference?

        Fake ballot papers found

        http://www.lankatruth.com/home/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=8134:fake-ballot-papers-found&catid=42:smartphones&Itemid=74

        A stock of printed matter similar to the official ballot paper has been apprehended in Balangoda area while being transported by a stalwart of the UPFA. This is when there is suspicion in the society whether the election could be free and fair.

        It is suspected that the material has been printed in Government Press. The ballot paper has “SHE 000200-P.E 2015 Government Press PV’ printed on it. The Deputy Election Officer at Ratnapura has begun an investigation regarding the incident.

        Civil organizations including election monitors are concerned regarding the matter as the cage in front of the ‘betel leaf’ has been crossed. Meanwhile, Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa states he would somehow or other win the election and various election violations and frauds that take place are being revealed.

    • 0
      0

      All from that side.

      Another Story was Sarath fonseka was planning to defect.

  • 3
    0

    What is the impact of Vote rigging and electoral corruption during the last presidential election – Nothing happened ?

    what is the impact of False propaganda and lies ? Can we turn it around.

    What is the impact of Voter anger towards specific candidates, during this election ? Do the parties address that both negatively and positively ?

    what are the issues specific to the each province ?

  • 6
    0

    The pattern of voting in each district need not follow what happened in 2010. There are many issues which have developed against the incumbent. Further MR’s ambition of overstaying has not gone well with the general public. The value of selling the war story has dipped badly and would not increase MR’s vote bank but declining badly. Further, the desertion of so many ministers, parliamentarians, PC and pradesyasabha members on a daily basis adding fuel into fire.
    Based on all these and the popular campaign carried out by Maithree points out to a great victory for him provided the elections are free and fair. If this happens, MR would have to ensure a peaceful transfer of power for the new regime to take over.

  • 7
    1

    Dr Gamage, all your predictions presupposes a ‘free and fair’ election.

    The North and East is potentially half-a-million votes to Maithripala, and if this is achieved and added to the fractured Sinhala-Buddhist vote, then it is curtains for MR and his whole shebang.

    But here is the rub: do you think the current regime is going to roll over and play gentlemanly?

    Gota is committed to save the nation (and the regime) from any ‘foreign conspiracy’. So what is there to stop him imposing martial law, and Deshapriya postponing/cancelling the elections, and MR carrying on to fight another time?

    IF that happens, the Common Candidate and his Common Supporters will surely disintegrate and be exposed and who knows what will happen then.

    The worst is yet to come.

    • 0
      6

      MR is definitely winning the PE – very clearly as per results disclosed by computers of the State!!
      A webnews reveals some Indian cyber experts are being employed in this activity:- “They are involved in it with a front that they are upgrading Sri Lanka Telecom’s Peo TV. But, Peo TV technicians say the Indian team has nothing to do with any upgrading work. At Head End, what they actually do is relaying computer data to other locations. This place is strategically located to change computer data. Also, the entire election result communication process is coordinated by SLT, which gives dedicated lines and virtual pin numbers to the election secretariat and other institutions. The district returning officers are sending the results by fax to the elections commissioner. The Indian IT experts are looking into whether they can change the results while being on transit to the elections commissioner.”

      Elsewhere it states MR is also planning a dissolution of Parliament should he loose, before MS could swear-in which CJ can delay?.

      Also that 2 Indian Planes have been chartered for their depature,
      as arranged by Sajin during his recent visit to Singapore?

  • 3
    0

    Dr.gamage

    What do you think of this?What could be done to improve it?

    2010 presidential election results

    http://www.infolanka.com/news/election2010.htm

    And here is a 2015 forecast.

    1.Assume that 115000 voters decide to switch from mahinda to maithripala in the colombo district,then maithri will win colombo by a majority of 150000 votes.

    2.If 115000 voters switch from mahinda to maithri in the gampaha district mahinda will win gampaha by 50000 votes.

    3.So the net effect after the cumulative results of colombo and gampaha is maithri leading by 100000 votes.

    4.Now take the other big district of kurunegala.If 90000 voters switch from mahinda to maithri,mahinda will win that district by 75000.

    5.So after these three big districts are polled maithri will be leading by 25000 votes.

    6.Now take kandy district.If 75000 voters decide to switch from mahinda to maithri then maithri will win kandy by 75000 votes.

    7.So after the results in colombo,gampaha,kurunegala and kandy districts is added up,maithri will be leading by 100000 votes with Mahinda winning gampaha and kurunegala districts and maithri winning colombo and kandy districts.

    8.now take kalutara,galle and ratnapura which are medium size districts and assume a switch of 60000 voters from mahinda to maithri in each district then mahinda will still win kalutara by 70000,galle by 55000 and ratnapura by 55000 votes,making a total of 180000 votes.

    9.So after the seven largest districts colombo,gampaha,kurunegala,kandy and kalutara,galle,ratnapura counting is over mahinda would be leading with 80000 votes with maithri only winning colombo and kandy and mahinda gampaha,kurunegala,kalutara,galle and ratnapura.

    10.Now take the small medium districts like kegalle,matara,anuradhapura and badulla and assuming a switch of 45000 votes from mahinda to maitri,then kegalle,matara and anurathapura will be won by mahinda by 30000,50000 and 65000 votes while maithri will win badulla by 50000,giving a net total majority to mahinda from these 4 districts of approximately 100000 votes.

    11.So after the largest 11 districts are counted mahinda will be leading by 180000 votes with maithri winning colombo,kandy and badulla and mahinda the rest.

    12.The balance 11 districts are small ones with some smaller than the others.If we take the largest of them puttalam,hambantota,nuwaraeliya and digamadulla and assume a switch of 35000 from mahinda to maithri,then mahinda will win hambantota by 50000 while maithri will win nuwara eliya by 100000 and digamadulla by 75000 and Puttalam by 5000 and thereby giving him a majority of 130000 from the 4 districts.

    13.If you substract this 130000 votes for maithri from the cumulative 180000 votes for mahinda so far as in point 11, mahinda will be leading maithri by 50000 votes after 15 districts of the 22 are counted,with maithri winning only colombo,kandy,badulla,nuwar eliya,puttalam and digamadulla and mahinda the rest.

    14.Now let us take matale and moneragala.Assuming a switch of 25000 votes,mahinda would yet win matale by 10000 and moneragala by 40000

    15.So the grand total at this stage for mahinda after the count of 17 out of 22 districts would be 100000 majority.

    16.now to pollonaruwa where maithri comes from.Will the home crowd vote for the local fella or mahinda?I probably would think the local.

    17.normally i would have given a swing of 25000 votes from mahinda to maithri,but because this is the local fella probably it would be 35000.Too difficult to call any way and could go either way with only a small negligible margin of victory for either if they win it.

    18.Now coming to the balance 4 districts which are tamil majority batticaloa,trinco,jaffna and vanni.Can they give a majority of more than 100000 votes to maithri to clinch the election for him.

    19.The TNA should easily be able to muster much more than 100000 votes majority for maithri from these 4 districts to give him a comfortable victory by more than 200000 at least.It seems to be a replay of the 2005 election where the tamil votes was the decider but this time instead of ranil losing by 180000 votes,it could be mahinda losing.

    20.Assumption has been of a free and fair election.Computer jilmart and thuggery and intimidation has not been taken into consideration.

    • 1
      0

      I have done a similar analysis and if 10% swing against Mahinda MY3 could easily win.

      MR still can win majority of districts and will lose the election.

      Therefore it is not easy to win MR this time. I agree with Gunaruwan who is very good friend of mine at school time.

      As I live in Australia I am not feeling election heat. But I can tell those who supported MR in 2010 now against him and I expect same from Sri Lanka.

  • 5
    0

    What happens after the 8th is everybody’s guess. Going by what happened after the 2010 elections, we can be pessimistic as you suggest about the possibilities. However, 2015 is not 2010. Many factors have changed including internationally. The President is the head of the commonwealth. The US, EU and India are closely watching the way the election is being conducted. If there is any dubious attempt to nullify the result, deny the people a free and fair election, or subvert the election, the international reaction can be strong thus time. Therefore, it would be foolish for those in authority at present to attempt naughty things before,during or after the election. This is how I read the situation anyway.

  • 1
    5

    Even a third rate foreign analyst of Sri Lanka politics is familiar with SL politicians. This writer says that Rajitha Senaratne who he considers a high profile representative is from Colombo district. Actually, Rajitha is from Kalutara district and not from Colombo district. If this writer’s knowledge is such, its a waste to comment on other items. God only know how he mark Rajitha as a high profile politician when the man is fifth in the PA manape list in Kalutara district.

  • 6
    0

    Even if the people do their duty by casting their votes,for the candidate of their choice,somewhere they will be played out ,and cheated,and the whole exercise will be in vain .
    My3 and his team must be vigilant and question the Indian computer expert who may and can alter the peoples verdict, 30,000 votes can become only 3000 because of the jilmart.

  • 1
    0

    The people of all communities should take serious note of what Sri Gamage & Spring Koha had commented in this column about the possible events after the election results announced.In the event the opposition
    wins,the ruling party should ensure a peaceful transfer of power to the
    new regime as many leading countries like India, USA,Canada, EU and the
    UN,in particular, are watching the EP election very closely, and any undemocratic methods attempted to grab power, unlawfully, or cancel the results under some pretext or postpone the elections, will have serious repercussions from these countries, such as imposing sanctions,
    Travel bans and will allow diasporas, overseas to gain strength. The big losers will be the businessmen who have roaring businesses in the above countries and donors will keep away and economy will nose dive.
    Also the ruling party should keep in mind that they will weaken the UN war crimes violations case against them, which is pending for ruling.

    SL has only China as a friend among the leading countries and the rest of the friends are poor and powerless in the international political arena and they will wash their hands off for fear of repercussions from UN and other donor countries Like USA & Canada for supporting an unlawful regime. Everything will look OK initially with victory marches
    going around the country and when the honeymoon period is over, the rot will set in and people will be kept in the dark. Russia today, is an example of a rich country affected by sanctions. Are we going to carry the begging bowl in the future is the question that every citizen
    should ask himself or herself.This reminds me of the period during the French revolution, when people asked for bread from the rulers, they were asked to eat cakes and that was the level of knowledge, they had about poverty in France at the time of revolution.

    Some may argue as to how Mugabe of Zimbawe, who did similar things is surviving and the reason is that there are dictatorships around Zimbawe
    and they help each other as democracy is dead in some parts of Africa,
    but SL is in South East Asia, where surrounding countries have democratically elected govts. and they will not support a country that is not run democratically.

  • 0
    0

    Tim softy,
    Spring Koha,
    Muslim,

    Maithree may win with peoples votes but what all of you have mentioned might decide the final fate unfortunately for Srilankans.

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