21 October, 2020

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Stop Militarisation: Lawyers For Democracy Tells Government

“Lawyers for Democracy” see a serious crisis developing due to authorities concerned acting under a misconception regarding the 30 year war which was against an armed struggle and our forces were able to successfully defeat and the war against the pandemic Covid-19. The war against Covid-19 cannot be defeated by the use of military power or by adopting military strategies and tactics. The war against Covid 19 has to be led by the Public Health Authorities of our country and it is they who should be in the front line in this war. The main supporting force has to be the public service from government agents, divisional secretaries, down to village level public servants such as grama niladharies, samurdi niyamakas, govi niyamakas, etc. The tri forces has an important task to play in support of the public health authorities and public service in implementation of their decisions and strategies.

In this context the move by the government to deprive the Public Health Authorities the sole right to decide on policies and strategies in fighting this war and to give the leadership to the forces ignoring the important role of the public service is of great concern.  

We “Lawyers for Democracy” view these moves of the government as a further step towards militarization of the state. The appointment of a retired Major General as the Secretary of the Ministry of Health clearly shows this trend. 

We lawyers for Democracy calls upon the government to stop this trend and to strengthen the fight against Covid-19 by assigning the leadership to Public Health Authorities and Public Services.  

Lal Wijenayake 

On behalf of the Conveners

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Latest comments

  • 28
    6

    The Govt: is treating the Public Service and the Health authorities as Persona non Grata!

    • 6
      7

      You kidding me….?
      .
      Retired military officers are also Sri Lankan citizens. They have same rights as rest of us to apply and hold any public/state position they choose.
      .
      By stating as above YOU wants us to treat persons associated with military as “persona non Greta”. Which will not happen.

      • 7
        2

        SCP
        To borrow a term from George Orwell they seem “more equal than others”!

        • 4
          3

          Yes SJ.
          .
          As far as political appointees are concerned that may be correct.
          But you have to look from another perspective.
          .
          1. Past governments always appointed lost politicians or election contributors for these posts.
          2. Sri Lanka used to run by “art graduates”.
          3. Military is the best source of trained manpower.
          .
          Just a few loose facts.

    • 1
      0

      And Education:
      .
      We have to educate our people. Clever ruses are being hatched:
      .
      Read only this my writing, if you trust me:
      .
      http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=222429
      .
      That article in Monday’s island bemoans a brilliant article on Education in Sunday’s Times not being read. The article is not brilliant.

      .
      No, not after post COVID-19 economic ruin.
      .
      The island article says that English must first be taught to all. How? We’ve been trying for a century.
      .
      The quack Professor’s article is designed to rake in money from the rich – not provide the skills we need:
      .
      http://www.sundaytimes.lk/200517/education/post-pandemic-how-sri-lanka-can-thrive-as-an-ideal-higher-education-destination-402810.html
      .
      It all boils down to what the yuppies of Colombo (some of them nice enough guys) prescribe for all: STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Nothing else? Won’t work!
      .
      Not with economies worldwide shattered by COVID-19 after effects. We need more grass-roo skills, properly developed – Agriculture, building skills, etc.
      .
      Have STEM in English for those who pay fortunes, but that’s not the way to educate the majority.
      .
      The rural poor will riot!

  • 31
    7

    Lal Wijenayake,
    Sinhalese preferred for a military rule instead of people government because of the fake propaganda by the Mahinda Family and hard wing Buddhist Sinhala Fundamentalists like Weerawansa and Gammanpila. Look at the propaganda;
    1. UNP govt is trying to give a separate state to Tamils through a new constitution to satisfy LTTE backed Tamil Diaspora. If that happens Sinhala will have to end of in the sea.
    2. A muslim doctor carried out sterilisation of more than 8000 Sinhalese women. (Is it possible for Muslim SHO doctor carry out such operations in a Sinhalese hospital surrounded by Sinhalese consultants, other doctors nurses, and security guards)
    3. Easter Bombings were carried out by Muslims terrorists and the government should arrest Rishard Badiudeen and Rauf Hakkem, not Hisbullah or Sabri Aldi).
    4. UNP signed an agreement with USA to hand over Srilanka to America (now it is clear Gota has agreed with USA, and received funds.
    These propaganda is to cheat Sinhalese and the Easter bombing must have planned by Gotabaya and USA. They want to have two third majority before Sinhalese people come to know the truth or wake up the real motive of Mahinda Family.

    • 1
      3

      Ajith,
      Sinhala people came to know the real motive of Mahinda Family on 18 May 2009, the day people in Sri Lanka were liberated from megalomaniac Tamil terrorist leader Piripakaran who slaughtered Sinhala, Demala and Mulim people for three decades by sending him to hell.

      Unfortunately, some Sinhala, mainly first time voters who got misled by tons of lies bombarded on them by ‘Regime Change’ mafia did a great injustice to this country in 2015. But in April, 2019 they realized the mistake they did and will not made that mistake again.

      As a member of the ‘Tiger Family’ who got defeated and suffering from ‘Inferiority Complex’, you are free to release your anger and frustration by spewing anti-Rajapakshe venom.

      “They want to have two third majority before Sinhalese people come to know the truth or wake up the real motive of Mahinda Family.”

  • 27
    6

    Additional point on the propaganda:
    Just now I read a news item in which former MP admiral Weerasekara commented on the issue of a name used in an English news paper (UK) called “Eelam”, he claimed that in 2009 they only got the tail of LTTE but now with this government we have to eradicate the Tamils live around the world including Tamil Nadu, USA, UK, EU, Canada etc.

    Note; Today is the victory day celebration. (????)

    • 22
      4

      He said that the military only got the tail of tiger, the head, limbs, torso etc etc of the tiger is spread all over the world.

      . After 30 years of war and genocide on the 18th May they only managed to get the tail of the tiger…and what more they cant let the tail go…

      they are wagging racism with the tiger’s tail

      • 5
        5

        Rajash,
        At least Sri Lankan Armed Forces managed to cut the tail of the Tiger. What did ‘Para’ Demala LTTE barbarians who slaughtered Native Sinhalayo for three decades managed to do to the Lion. NOTHING!!!

        “After 30 years of war and genocide on the 18th May they only managed to get the tail of the tiger”

        • 1
          1

          Eagle Brain Dead Blind Eye

          Who are the Native Sinhalayos?
          Is it the 125,000 years old grand father of yours?
          Was he the one who discovered Zero?

          A Hindian ship is leaving colombo on 1 June 2020 with those stranded people back to southern Hindia. You will have to reserve a seat at the High Commission.

          You do not have to suffer in this land, carry on, …..

    • 5
      7

      Ajith,
      Today is not ‘Victory Day’. It is called ‘Ranaviru Day’ to pay respect to the members of the Armed Forces who sacrificed their lives to liberate people in Sri Lanka (Sinhala, Demala, Muslim, Malay, Vedda Eththo) from megalomaniac Piripakaran’s LTTE terrorist barbarians who terrorized this country for three decades.
      I am sure Demala mothers who had teenagers would have got relieved on 19 May 2009 that their children will not be forcibly recruited by LTTE as soldiers. So, Demala people also should be grateful to Sri Lankan Armed Forces for eradicating LTTE menace.

  • 19
    5

    Gota is testing the water with this militarisation…

  • 7
    5

    Most of the SLPP guys needs tigers head,limb,head leave alone the ass to carry out work related to coming elections.IT WILL BE WEERASEKREA WHO WILL CLAIM THE OWNERSHIP OF DEAD TIGER HEAD,LIMB TO WEERAWANSE,TORSO TO GAMANPULLE.ASS FOR REST OF THE CROWED.THEY THIS THREE GUYS WILL HAVE A TIGER MEAT BBQ IN COLOMBO DISTRICT TO FEED THE BRAIN LESS VOTERS.

  • 20
    4

    Too late. The military is made up of some shameless men. SL is the only country where Generals and Brigadiers work under a Colonel!

  • 6
    0

    The “Lawyers for Democracy” observe only the Health Sector and the concern stems with the appointment of a militia man as the Health Secretary. The appointment of another militia man to quite another important ministry seem not to catch the attention of this organization. The “militarization” stems up with the familiarity with the likes, just as much as birds of a feather flock together. The greater fear that the lawyers should be concerned, is that the zeal to deliver unhindered by procedural or legal issues and the military man is the ideal for this purpose, will soon engulf the entire top bureaucracy with militias. Already the Secretaries of Ministries and Heads of Institutions were told “DELIVER OR DEPART”, no legalistic or procedural excuses. This view point was echoed in different words during the Independence Day message where even the judiciary was encompassed. This tendency will increase in the face of disappointments in delivering expected goods and services. Does all this mean a command and control type of model? As I have echoed previously both the main candidates of the last presidential elections have the same traits and the people were offered to select a side of the same coin.

  • 4
    8

    It is a welcoming mission by “Lawyers for Democracy” to speak up against the ongoing system of civil administrations replaced by military officer. It is indeed a timely call to put a stop before matters getting into the hands of the army. “Lawyers for Democracy” should understand a vital point here that was disrupting civil administration since the introduction of the Language Policy Act in 1956. SWRD Bandaranayake brought Sinhala Only Act within 24 hours without foreseeing the disastrous outcomes that is slowly destroying the country. As a result efficiency of government departments continue to drop ever since and it is still continuing. Present President Gotabaya Rajapakse is a visionary and a no-nonsense leader, he can’t tolerate inefficient corrupted administration that will ruin his plans. “Lawyers for Democracy” should be in a position to understand the ground reality well before making slogans. President Gotabaya didn’t want to be in the mercy of those inefficient government servants, but to replace them with military officers which is the right thing. Please understand that the government is in a do or die situation and president is not in situation to please all. It is high time “Lawyers for Democracy” should pull up their socks to spearhead a campaign to motivate the government staff to work diligently without causing loss to the country.

  • 10
    0

    Militarisation of public institutions has huge advantages to rulers. On the one hand, if the military hierarchy has pledged allegiance and absolute loyalty to the rulers, or if their reliability is guaranteed by the overtures made, and if the system does not make it possible for a coup or military takeover of a civilian government, then it is simply a matter of giving orders and the appointed military personnel carrying them out just like in the military with no questions asked, or explanations requested, or legalities questioned. Ministry secretaries earn a very good salary and have access to many perks, so the retired military men will be eternally grateful for these opportunities. History is replete with authoritarian leaders who have ruled with absolute power for generations. A good recent example is Hosni Mubarak of Egypt. Some partly successful stories emerge from places like Pakistan and Indonesia. On the other hand, a military is very efficient at regimenting a plan of action compared to govi niyaamakas and samurdhi niladharis even if public health inspectors are technically trained to meet some aspects of contagions spreading in a community. Medical officers trained in public health should have led the taskforce, ably assisted by a military leader. Even after the pandemic is under control, militarisation will have heaps of benefits to a ruling elite or family as the case may be. So, lawyers will then become a quaint breed to simply observe with amusement, while citizens will have no recourse to justice if the powers determine otherwise.

  • 6
    2

    In other countries good leaders turned unpopular due to their authoritarian and corrupt acts. We elected a man who has all sorts of accusations against him and are expecting a democratic and righteous society under him.

  • 1
    2

    If the lawyers in Sri Lanka feel that there is no democracy in the country they must stop going to courts and boycott the Judicial process, this would expose SL militarization to the entire world.

  • 2
    0

    Eagle Brain Dead Blind Eye

    Who are the Native Sinhalayos?
    Is it the 125,000 years old grand father of yours?
    Was he the one who discovered Zero?

    A Hindian ship is leaving colombo on 1 June 2020 with those stranded people back to southern Hindia. You will have to reserve a seat at the High Commission.

    You do not have to suffer in this land, carry on, …..

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