By C.V. Wigneswaran –
Someone asked me: What is your take on the results of the Election in the North and East? Have the Tamil Nationalists failed?
My response was: Certainly not. Tamil people have reacted to the selfish policy-less behaviour of the TNA. The erstwhile TNA votes have got divided mostly among the three parties – TNA, Cycle party and us. Some have shown their disapproval of the TNA by voting to the State favoured parties. Many who so voted felt obliged to repay those who helped them with “goodies” at various times.
These voters’ votes were bought by such candidates. One MP who bought votes at the previous 2015 Election is credited to have said when questioned why he did not respond favourably to his voters’ several demands- “Remember I bought their votes. I owe no duty to them. When the next Election comes I will again buy their votes! I must now concentrate upon making back the money I gave them”.
Thus Politics has now become a business. Though Douglas has a certain number of voters who will vote for him under any circumstances, Angajan’s voters are those who were temporarily mesmerized by his dole – outs and promises of employment. Angajan would have to dole out more and more to get less and less votes hereafter because people would have by now realized what had happened – that they were bought over. Employment will be a mirage. The Government’s debts now exceed ten trillion. That is 1 plus 13 zeros! Poor Angajan spent all that money on Corona Relief and other relief packages apart from last minute dole – outs only to be finally made a Coordinating Committee Chairman. But now he has got the post of Deputy Chairman of Committees. Wonder how he intends making all that money up in the future unless all that money were gifts from powers that be!
As for me I am proud of the fact that those who voted for me in fact voted for me and not for any dole – outs or promises of employment and other benefits. In any event we had no money to spend on such vote catching devices. We borrowed from the people and spent them and have prepared our receipts and expenditure accounts which are being audited and which will be shared with our benefactors. We have been transparent throughout our Campaign. I publicized my assets before the Election.
What must be understood is that no Sinhala government wants to “develop” the North and East. They want to keep the North and East under their control. If they intend developing them, they should make the people self-reliant and capable of looking after themselves. Constructing a road, giving a job here or there, opening a Park and so on is not development.
I remember the then Governor of the Lions Club telling us Lions “Giving benefits to the people would not be development. We need to make our people self-reliant. They should be made to look after themselves. It is pointless giving Fish for example to a family to consume then and there. We must teach them how to Fish so that they would improve themselves and develop themselves independently”.
I doubt any Sinhala government wants to make the Tamils of the North and East self-reliant or allow them to develop themselves. They want our People to be dependent upon them, not to grow up to be self-reliant.
One of the reasons why Angajan was not considered even for a Junior Ministership was because they would have felt Angajan would have grown too big for his boots. They would not be able to control him. As Deputy Chairman of Committees he could be controlled!
So my understanding of the Election results is that it had been a reaction to the negative policies so far followed by the TNA. The TNA votes have fallen tremendously when compared to the earlier Election.
The cyclists too have lost heavily. The difference between us and the cycle party has been just 15,000 votes. Theirs is a party which contested the Election several times and lost. Even the vote bank they had at the Local Government Election, has come down tremendously. Only one was elected. Eleven years’ campaigning one seat! Six months’ (sans Covid 19 three months) campaigning one seat. Not bad! Is it not?
Within six months of which nearly three months were Covid 19 months, we brought together five Parties from the North and East, banded them together, fought the election without proper finances, without adequate personnel to help, without proper network, with insufficient time to introduce our Party and symbol to the People and yet got 51,000 votes and got one seat.
Hon’ Siththarthan gained due to the ignorance of some of our supporters. They wanted to Vote for Wigneswaran but did not know that he was no more of the House symbol but now Fish symbol! So they voted for House and number 6 and Hon’Siththarthan was the beneficiary! Again some crossed against the House and Fish or Cycle and Fish wanting to show us of their desire that all Tamil National Parties must unite. Over 35000 were spoilt votes!
I think on our part we have done extremely well. While the other Tamil Nationalist parties lost their votes heavily we came up to this point from scratch.
My hunch is our People will soon jettison the TNA, the Cycle Party as well as the government favoured Parties and bring us into power at the Provincial Council Election to be held early next year. The Government favoured Parties will be completely routed.
Tamil Nationalism has not failed. It is in hibernation!