14 July, 2024

Blog

The Health Sector In Crisis; Causes & Possible Curse 

By Upatissa Pethiyagoda

Dr. Upatissa Pethiyagoda

Of all the crises that affect us, the most damaging is that of the medical sector. It is the poor, the old and the sick, who are not able to meet the prohibitive costs of private health services, who are the most affected. Pictures of elders turned away from empty clinics by sudden Trade Union actions by nurses, attendants and (quite deplorably) doctors, are heart-breaking.

Now we are being told that consultants, experienced specialist doctors are leaving the country in droves, supposedly seeking more lucrative employment in richer countries. It is unfair, and possibly erroneous, to suggest that money is the only or main motivating force. It takes much more than that to force these of our more educated sons to leave their country of birth, the warmth of the society and the richness of its culture and traditions, to virtually build a more secure and comfortable life in foreign climes, for themselves and their children. Money is not all.

It is clear that many of our countrymen working abroad have reached stellar heights in their chosen fields. It seems that our young men and women are no less talented than the best there is. Thus, it is not likely that the lure of creature comforts and money alone are the main driving forces, or that they are betraying the investment of State money and time, to equip them educationally, The suggestion that they should acknowledge their debt to the nation in some way, is reasonable, However, rather than regarding them as being criminally negligent by “Abandoning ship” at a crucial time. Most, I believe would be willing to do so in such manner, as suggestive of a “gracious act of gratitude”, rather than as an imposed “fine”

There are much more compelling reasons to justify their risking their own future and that of their children, in virtually unfamiliar conditions. I believe that the deeper running discontent has to be recognized and rectified, so that our growing society will measure up to their expectations of a contented (and thereby loyal) citizenry.

It is true that health and education are nominally provided free by the State (that is you and I ), but equally true that their quality is far below acceptable standards.

Undeserved enthronement of divisive politics

Sadly, in our society, politics is all. That it emits an overpowering stench on all that it touches is clear. It is a largely parasitic creature, whose roots have sunk into a totally subservient heart. That it has done so successfully is tribute to a virile and evergreen menace. Thus our stupidly malleable society has been deceived to loudly demand a timely holding of elections and a New Constitution as a kind of “national paracetamol.” Surely, no one should buy that. Our electoral processes are as far from democracy as chalk is from cheese.

This false delusion of “Power to the people” deflects attention from much more compelling and real issues like for example, escalation of crime, drug addiction and widespread malnutrition of children.

Rather than asserting that emigrating citizens are disloyal ingrates, it would be far more productive to identify and where possible to eliminate, or at least to reduce the underlying causes that encourage emigration,.

Firstly, the discontent that is dramatized by the alarming departure of medical talent, is much more widespread among all professionals, be they teachers, researchers, academics or engineers, as well as others with specialized training and experience. They are invaluable assets, which our country cannot afford to lose.

Given the all- pervasive nature of politics in our country, ii is but fair that comparison focus on this sector as setting standards for others. Parliament becomes the “Gold Standard” or a factor of reference as the base. By any measure, the stark difference between the rewards for politics far surpasses those of any other. This huge aberration, if allowed unchecked, will lead to irreversible decline and eventual collapse.

The enormous disparity between rewards for Parliamentary representation are so blatant that they could never have escaped the notice by the beneficiaries of this ridiculous reality. A few need emphasis..

Costs and (no) returns

Each member of Parliament is estimated to cost the Exchequer about one million Rupees per month. In reply to a Member’s query, it was revealed that the total cost of maintaining a previous incumbent of the Presidency, was around twenty million per day.. Little wonder that in the quest for this bonanza, the aspirants would resort to even the most despicable crime, to lay their grasping hands on this unconscionable reward. Talk of “value for money”.

Dereliction of Duty

Parliament assembles for 100 to 120 days per year. This works out at less than a two-day week. Even with this low demand, the empty seats are scandalous. Often, even the quorum is not met. The front row of seats (ruling party seniors and Cabinet) are bare. It was once explained (without a semblance of shame) that no less than 18 Ministers were abroad. One wonders how the rest of the World survives in their absence. One may also question why our taxpayers should pay for the upkeep of other Countries, while neglecting their own. Generally the proceedings, of Parliament are rich in ritual and poor in substance. It is astonishing to be told that the cost of a single days sitting is about 8,000/=. This is a cynical insult to taxpayers to support a rowdy marketplace.

The Speaker is only a glorified timekeeper, who periodically wakes up to Interrupt a speaker, to say “ Hon. Member, you have only…….minutes left”. This is regardless of whether the speech is useful (rarely) or utter rubbish (frequently).

Incidentally, members refer to each other as “Garu” or sometime even “garuthara”. The louts are certainly “Thara” judging by their ever expanding waistlines, but “Garu”?, I am not so sure.

Quite often, the House adjourns, even after just about ten minutes for lack of a quorum or even inability to control a rowdy display. It is interesting to know whether members draw their “sitting allowance” of some Rs 500/=

While this is bad enough, the house voted a monthly allowance of Rs 200,000/= for “Electoral Work” Add to this, free electricity, telephone, postage, water, rent free housing, travel, drivers and staff allowances, subsidized restaurant meals, car permits ,(transferable) medical allowances and God knows what else.

Pensions: While most public officers get entitled to a graded pension after more than twenty years of service, and this too a miserable percentage of their last salary, an MP after just five years (just a single term), qualifies for a lifetime pension possibly drawing 100% of his emoluments as pension for life, and for the wife too. A retiring (or dying or being chased out) President is entitled to a full salary, a house, staff and security as before. The same applies for the surviving spouse. Not bad is it?

In my personal case, after serving The State for more than fifty years, I do not draw one cent as pension. Is it any wonder that I have a great respect and love for politicians living or dead?

I have deliberately focused on the undue prominence and costs of duping ourselves on the relevance and importance of an essentially divisive activity. The media must take much of the blame for this societal scourge. Personalities of doubtful competence – even to the extent of crudity – are lionized by undue prominence. It seems as if nothing else matters. Events, achievements and personalities outside of politics do not seem to be worthy of attention.

This situation has sub-liminally perhaps, defined much public behaviour – such as this of massive emigration. It is human nature to be exhilarated by peers as worthy of praise. It is painful to be ignored or condemned to anonymity.

The low priority accorded to science and professionalism in general manifests in several ways and bodes ill for development, and adversely impacts on sustainability and future progress.

The impact of science on a country’s progress, is well illustrated by countries like Germany, UK and other European countries and Japan and more recently by China and South Korea. The South Korean example is perhaps the most relevant to us. The management of companies with significant technological content, like Samsung, is a striking example, where young and recently qualified scientists are at the helm of management.

As an indication of the Government’s serious interest, a massive multi-storied building was built to house their nascent Science Academy. The total cost was more than Five Million US Dollars and borne entirely by The Government. The floor area is vastly in excess of immediate needs. The Academy was empowered to rent out or lease the surplus premises and use the proceeds to meet their immediate needs. This is in a country which not so long ago was in severe economic distress.

In contrast, The Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science (SLAAS) and The National Academy for Sciences in Sri Lanka (NASSL) are together allocated just about a million Sri Lanka Rupees as an Annual Grant, and this too not paid to the two Associations in several years. It is hoped that The State Institutes for Health (MRI), Industries (ITI) and The Government Analysts and Meteorology Departments are treated better. Contrast this with the expenditure borne for Parliament and other ancillary bodies (eg The Provincial and District

Councils etc), figure, and it is easy to see where state priorities seem to lie. Actually, the medical sector has a march over others. This is the contentious issue of Private practice being allowed outside of official working hours. All are aware how this contentious facility is prone to abuse. The State service suffers deprivation and providers of private services thrive, The same applies to the education field as well, Private tutors easily siphon quality education to Private Tutories, fed easily by willful neglect of legitimate duties.

Language of Education

In my opinion this is one of the most damaging political stunts since 1956.The perpetrators of this crime took pains to see that their own children were shipped abroad to be educated in English, thereby improving their employability, locally and also in most parts of the World.

At the time of this disastrous change, (during the watch of our greatest PM), the Minister of Education was Mr Badi-uddin Mohamed Former Principal of Zahira College, Gampola. Under the Act, Muslim children could choose their medium of instruction, while those of Tamil or Sinhala parentage were compelled to choose the language of their parents. Muslim children mostly chose English The consequences are plain to see and are bound to be aggravated with time,

To me, the Language/Swabasha/Sinhala only Act, has been an unmitigated disaster. The abandonment of English as the medium of instruction, has blasted the career prospects for our children, isolating them from a vast treasure of information and thereby employability. Perhaps most parents would not wish this to happen to their children. Hence the incentive to relocate. This change has handicapped a whole generation and will affect others yet to come. It was political jugglery at its worst and will remain a monument to a nation’s stupidity.

Security and lawlessness

Media coverage reveals a massive escalation of crime. Unsolved killings, robberies, drug-related crimes and smuggling. The numbers and quantities and cash seizures are mind boggling. Sociologists have a role in determining the extent to which proceeds and prevalence of law infringements results in a social and class upheaval. The Middle Class is facing extinction and take-over by a less educated and more vicious segment of society. The elders among us may recall “The Turf Club Robbery” which made media headlines for months. The amount involved was some four lakhs and one murder. In today’s context, this would barely qualify as petty crime.

Corruption which has penetrated all sectors of society, is alarming and very justifiably concern parents and would constitute an important incentive for re-location.

The problem of drug addiction among the young is truly alarming. If unchecked, it will escalate sufficiently to throttle our entire social fabric. Ho one can be blamed for choosing not to bequeath such a mess for their children. The lack of a work ethic, integrity and moral and ethical underpinnings of society is alarming.

Consequently there is a cynicism that dominates –no one can be believed. This has very far-reaching impacts. Choosing to ignore such trends is a recipe for disaster. A feeling of powerlessness is a sure recipe for disaster.

These are, I believe, factors that motivate emigration, than the mere quest for monetary gain and creature comforts.

More politics and legal reforms alone are unlikely to be effective and adequate.

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Latest comments

  • 7
    1

    Don’t worry too much. President Ranil Wickremasinghe will put everything right by 2048.

    • 1
      1

      morgan

      you are quite right.we have to look at long term,not short term.

    • 3
      0

      Captain Morgan

      “President Ranil Wickremasinghe will put everything right by 2048.”

      Well Ranil is going to be 99.
      What is his message?

      He must be living in a parallel universe.
      So are the 22 Million, especially those who chose to elect Gota.

  • 2
    0

    possible cures

    1.get rid of the bugger who fell off the balcony in australia.Can’t even look after his own health.
    2.the chinese say the fish head rots first.westerners say culture permeates down from the top.
    3.See what percentage of the budget is allocated to health and compare with singapore.
    4.singapore has the highest life expectancy in the world and health system is superb. copy it.
    5. a healthy nation is a wealthy nation. use preventive measures for a healhy lifestyle for people.

    • 4
      0

      “In contrast, The Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science (SLAAS) and The National Academy for Sciences in Sri Lanka (NASSL) are together allocated just about a million Sri Lanka Rupees as an Annual Grant”
      In contrast, the government till recently supplied almost free electricity to many religious institutions, encouraging them to waste it on an epic scale. It seems the state is more interested in promoting pointless mysticism than encouraging science.

      • 3
        6

        I think that professional bodies should fund themselves.
        Membership fees can fetch more than any state subsidy. They also collect from private sector sponsors of events.

        • 5
          0

          “I think that professional bodies should fund themselves.”

          Isn’t it a first step towards capitalistic development of science, elites funding elitist institutions, denouncing Mao’s doctrine, …..

          “They also collect from private sector sponsors of events.”

          This amounts to privatisation of public knowledge, helping private sector monopoly on science and technology, through capitalist class maintain its power, … the slip is ……………….

          Down with ca……

          • 0
            4

            Pathetic.
            The poor sod cannot tell between educational bodies and professional bodies!

      • 2
        7

        OC
        I am not sure how well the professional bodies are encouraging science nowadays.
        There was a time, decades ago, when the SLAAS played a commendable role in popularising science.
        The professionals today have an eye to money more than to science. (I apologise to the handful of exceptions, if I have offended their sensibilities.)

      • 0
        1

        OC
        I fully agree with you on funding religious organizations.
        But do governments anywhere subsidize professional bodies?
        The government indirectly subsidises professional institutions by reimbursing up to two annual subscriptions per university academic and thus encouraging membership.
        Are professional bodies very professional in the conduct of their affairs?
        They are politicised.
        They get politicos to grace occasions like their Annual Conferences as Chief Guest etc.

    • 1
      6

      Medicine in the past several decades has been reduced to popping pills and being pricked with needles.
      Community medicine and preventive medicine are great investments that will cut down costs, make people healthier and curtail need for hospitalization.
      *
      Will most of the medical fraternity like the idea?
      What will be the take of Big Pharma on that idea?

  • 7
    2

    Revolution! No other way around it. See that poor boy killed on the train? Let his death not be in vain. Rise up! Destroy the Scourge!

    • 2
      0

      ramona

      you seem t have got idea after trump and his capitol city riots.

      who will be the next castro of the US?bernie sanders?

      • 2
        0

        Different country; different setting.

        • 0
          0

          same principle.

          • 1
            0

            No. Different principles. One is Make America Great Again. The other is Give Us Food.

            • 1
              1

              Trump’s Make America Great Again Revolution💪 vs. Sri Lanka’s own French Revolution ; Russian Resolution. 🙏😥🙇‍♀️🥣🥥

              • 0
                0

                what about “make sri lanka great again by 2048” by ranil wicks.Isn’t that a revolution,if trumps “make america great again” is a revolution for you.

                • 1
                  0

                  Sigh….such fallacy from you….You’re the one who said about Trump. I was thinking entirely of the French and Russian Revolutions.

                • 0
                  0

                  okay ramona.I get your point.What you are saying is make america great again is not a revolution.However the way trump went about trying to topple a government by by attacking parliament and nancy pelosi hiding under the desk,was it not the way revolutions take place.Whatever the slogans are it used the methods used in a revolution to topple a government.

                  • 2
                    0

                    That’s like saying chalk=cheese because they are both made up of molecules.

      • 3
        0

        shankar / September 16, 2023 –
        . Shankar, why on earth asking RTF that he is very similar to our SINHALA_Man who is a JVP leading NPP propagandist.Isn’t it the same as asking a blind person for an address on the street?

        Sinhala_Man fell deep as OC and I cross-examined about the “amazing talents of NPPrs”. Now he may be spending hours trying to face up us.
        .
        Both of them seem to have no basic knowledge about Sri Lanka or America. While Ramona may live there for ages, she adds that she doesn’t understand the level of racism of white supremacy in that part of the world yet today.
        .
        If the American government falls back to the hands of the elephants (as they are used to in that society) I would be more than happy if the leader becomes a Z-genzer like “VIVEK RAMASWAMY” from Trump”. Ramaswamy knows more about its people’s sense of pulse.

        • 1
          0

          Typo correction She is similar to our SINHALA Man (Self-proclaimed SATHYAGURU of CT). …..

        • 2
          1

          leelagemalli,
          Trump was revelling; Vivek Ramaswamy is rebelling.
          Trump was reviving; Vivek Ramaswamy is revolting.
          Trump waited for the right opportunity; he would exploit.
          Vivek Ramaswamy jumped at an opportunity; he would explode.

          • 2
            0

            Nathan

            So what is the role of voters in all these different ……
            Look the 6.9 million syndrome is not new to USA.

            Haven’t the voters experienced same kind of empty rhetoric in Sri Lanka and many parts of the world.

            Hope our mate nimal would one day educate us in all these types of full of hot air, all bark and no bite, …..

            • 3
              0

              Native Vedda,
              Just to satisfy your curiosity, –
              Our voters know only to INK
              Their voters know also to THINK.

            • 0
              4

              A fleeting moment of enlightenment?
              It will pass.

  • 14
    1

    After what our own govt, systems and patients did to Dr. Shaffi and to those Tamil doctors in N & E, (before, during and after war), can any right minded person expect them to stay in our bankrupt immoral nation ???? Didn’t all those crooks get together in defeating NCM against the corrupt Health Minister, so that he can continue to cheat the system. When other professionals ( Engineers, Accountants, Lawyers, IT. . . . . . ) skilled or unskilled are leaving , why not doctors ???? . Getting free education doesn’t mean spending time in prison and courts instead of hospitals and clinics. Doctors too have family, life , bills to pay . . . . . . and concerns about their children’s future.

  • 0
    0

    The Health Sector In Crisis; Causes & Possible Curse

    According to the 113 votes the Health Sector is not even the people are suffering President is unable to take corrective action because he is in parliamentary votes.

    We shall never have a world without errors, but the world that we do have can be a beautiful place if we just have the willingness to correct our errors The president’s position cannot act by appointing a committee to win collusion

  • 5
    12

    “The abandonment of English as the medium of instruction, has blasted the career prospects for our children,”
    Abandoning of English as a second or even third language was unwise, but It was Swabasha and free education that gave educational opportunity to an overwhelming majority of children.
    *
    In Malaysia “National Secondary Schools use Malay as the main medium of instruction because Malay language is the National language of Malaysia while English is a compulsory subject in all schools.”
    In Thainland, Thai is the official language of Thailand, and it is the language of instruction in regular classes and schools throughout the country. English is taught as a foreign language, along with other languages including French, Chinese, and German. In some schools, English is the language of instruction.
    We will find similar policies in West Asia as well, and even Bangladesh.
    These are among wise policies adopted in most of Asia.
    Craving English is a post colonial phenomenon in some South Asian countries.
    Singapore of course has English as national language.

    • 11
      0

      The health sector has always been in crisis. Successive govts. have always bowed down to unreasonable GMOA demands. Not only the GMOA scuppered private medical education, they themselves, by large, are not paying their debt to society. It is this trade union, whose members have benefitted from the education funded by tax payer that even attempted to sabotage the free ambulance service & failed to support one of their own when a hate campaign tarnished the good name of a doctor, turning it into a politicised racial issue. Yobs like Padeniya, who are a disgrace to the noble profession, capitalised the Covid pandemic, even publicly laughing at other nations who didn’t get it right but in fact, the joke was on SL. Covid may have been god’s wrath but it was a god send to govt. cronies.
      How this despicable lot, from the Minister to (most) doctors & health workers & opportunistic crony businessmen can sleep at nights knowing the sick are being deprived of care is beyond me.

    • 12
      4

      SJ

      English is an international language from which little SL can benefit. Many years ago, I learnt Japanese because at that time, only a few spoke English in Japan but my counterparts in Japan prefered if I communicated in English because they wanted to improve their English. I had a Thai friend at Uni who struggled because his English was not so good. Indian & Philippine nurses have employment opportunities in UK but not SL nurses because of their poor English. I studied in the Sinhala medium but fortunately, the standard of English was good at school, therefore, in my opinion, giving prominence to Sinhala deprives many of a sound higher education. However, now it seems we are going over the top with many sinhalese children being unable to read or write, or even speak sinhala because they attend ‘international’ schools where Sinhala is not in the curriculum. A family I know, sent the nanny for English classes because their 3 yr old child had to be spoken in English only.

      • 3
        9

        Benefits how many of us?
        I do not object to teaching English from early on; but teaching in English need not be as beneficial as claimed.
        *
        The Thai student may not have even got there if he had not the option to learn in Thai.
        We had been colonial slaves for four and a half centuries, and slavishness may be part of out mindset.

        • 10
          0

          SJ

          Technical & other publications beneficial, mainly, to students are invariably published in English. It would be outdated by the time a Sinhala translation, if at all, is available. We have an association with English because we were colonised by the British but the benefits would be the same if fluent in German or any other language of a developed country. However, an English translation is sure to follow, depending on its merits.
          As for my Thai friend, his father was a rich industrialist who wanted his son to have a broader exposure to the world to be an international businessman. It is the same with Asian & even Europeans.

          • 10
            0

            Raj UK , this pertains to people who do not deserve but immensely benefited from Swabasha BS like A/L failed doctors at the expense of qualified Tamils will not criticize. Only people suffered because of it were Tamils (not Sinhalese or Muslims). I do not expect those benefited, to criticize . By the way none of the countries mentioned here Thailand , Japan, Malaysia , Korea are bankrupt like us. Japan and Korea are still hiring teachers from outside to teach English in their schools. .people who never experienced international exposure will obviously discourage others from benefiting.

            • 2
              7

              “Japan and Korea are still hiring teachers from outside to teach English”
              The issue here is not ‘teaching English’ but ‘teaching in English’.

              • 7
                1

                You have neither in Sorry Lanka.

                • 0
                  0

                  Really!

          • 3
            7

            We are talking at cross purposes I fear.
            In the entire non-English speaking world very few countries crave English as medium of instruction
            Learning English is different from learning in English.
            The point to remember is that regardless of the man’s wealth his son learned in Thai, and that was no serious handicap. I know a wider cross section of Thai students during my time abroad from middle middle class to stinking rich. They lost nothing by learning in Thai.
            They picked up enough English to deliver the goods.
            So did the Chinese, Japanese, Koreans and others i knew who studied in their mother tongue. They fared as well as the better English educated South Asians.
            *
            Please look up views of educationalists on benefits of learning in the mother tongue.

            • 9
              0

              SJ
              I think we are splitting hairs over ‘learning English & learning in English’ & deviating from the main subject, which is, the crisis the health sector is in.
              I agree, some in SL may think they have much in common with our former colonists, as indicated by their fluency in English & poor knowledge of the mother tongue, which I believe, refers to your comment about our ‘slavish’ attitude towards our former colonists. However, my point is, that, we can benefit from learning English as it is an International language. My MBA cohort consisted of French, German, Spanish, Italian, Swedish, Norwegian, Dutch, Russian, Greek, Japanese, Malaysian, Japanese, Chinese & a few from the Middle East. These foreign students could have done their post graduate studies in their own countries, probably, in their own language but the diversity in our class indicates the importance of English as an international medium of communication.

              • 1
                5

                Sorry R-UK
                The difference is not splitting hairs.
                I never disputed the benefits of knowing English, and knowing it well.
                Learning in English has serious pedagogical implications for a non-native user of the language. (Many an educationist has written on the matter.)
                If you cannot appreciate the serious difference, you have great company somewhere below.

                • 0
                  0

                  Really, please list those educationist who are not from Lanka.

                  • 0
                    0

                    Seriously interested?
                    Even a Google search on the subject will help.

              • 4
                0

                Raj-UK,
                You should have been able to tell that to Oxford educated, Maha-Mudaliyars Son in 1956!!
                Shame that the timing was out of face!!???
                Now that’s history and the dilemma faced by Lanka!!??

          • 7
            0

            Raj,
            Doesn’t it bear thinking about that all our heads of government till the 90’s were English educated, some actually in England?

            • 7
              1

              Raj UK ” craving for English ” is the most stupid stereotype term I have heard among many. Only a Silly Lankan can find fault in ‘craving for knowledge. I guess the guy who criticizes, children and grandchildren today have discarded Colonial English and studying in Swabasha wherever they are. Hypocrite BS.

              • 0
                6

                It is craving English not ‘craving for’ (grammatically incorrect).
                So it is a stupid term.

            • 2
              6

              OC
              No head of state among them was born before teaching of English was abandoned. The Swabasha elite asserted itself much later. (Even Sinhala racists like KMP Rajaratna were fluent in English.)
              Representatives of the class that ruled the country was educated in or was taught English; and it was more than fluency in English that decided leadership.
              Where will you locate Premadasa? He knew English, but was his English of the same calibre as that of the rest?

              • 0
                0

                SJ,
                That was not supposed to be a compliment to those “honourable” gentlemen. They were as bad as the Swabasha educated ones.

        • 6
          0

          1
          .
          I think smaller developing countries such ours must allocate more funds for improving langauge skills in English should be made compulsory.
          High proficiency (ranking number on index)

          14Greece
          15Slovakia
          16Luxembourg
          17Romania
          18Hungary
          19Lithuania
          20Kenya
          21Bulgaria
          22Philippines
          23Czech Republic
          24Malaysia
          25Latvia
          26Estonia
          27Serbia
          28Nigeria
          29Switzerland
          30Argentina
          31Hong Kong, China

          In Europe Holland and thinly populated other coutnries and their govts allocate more state funds their educational systems to improve their knowledge in learn english, while grand nations such as Germany, Spain, Italy, France cut it from the begining on.

          That make it difficult their citizens to face the job life according to their critique. However european countries are powerful economies and that is not comparable to that of ours like begging coutnries.

          tbc

          • 5
            0

            Cont.
            .
            Low Proficiency in English (please be aware the number you see in brackets is the current ranking levels)

            SRILANKA ‘s is far lower to that of Ethiopians. – were you aware of this ?

            61Nicaragua
            62China
            63Tanzania
            64Turkey
            65Nepal
            66Bangladesh
            67Venezuela
            68Ethiopia
            69Iran
            70Pakistan
            71Sri Lanka
            72Mongolia
            73Qatar
            74Israel
            75Panama
            76Morocco
            77Colombia
            78U.A.E.
            78Algeria
            80Japan
            81Indonesia
            82Ecuador
            83Syria
            84Kuwait
            85Egypt
            86Mozambique
            87Afghanistan

            • 9
              1

              Thanks LM. Above facts are highly informative and helpful for this discussion Majority countries under colonial rule are continuing with educating in English. They were not stupid to allow hatred or their chreap politics, take over the benefits of English Education. .Many of them have done very well . Some are now showing interest to learn other/ our languages. while Swabasha retards adise grand children not to crave for English.

              • 2
                1

                Dear chiv,
                .
                I read Dr. Upatissa Pethiyagoda’s timely article
                , written in good English, a few days ago, but this is my first comment on it. The article deals mainly with many doctors abandoning the land of their birth and nurture, and going abroad. This has been happening at ever greater pace since the 9th of March 2023.
                .
                On that day we ought to have voted in a Local Election; prevented by a certain Ranil Wickremasinghe who now illegitimately wields power over us.
                .
                Towards the end of the article, Upatissa has spoken of “languages”. The ass calling himself “leelagemalli” has begun saying strange things about them. “Language” is something used by individual humans. I have one wife, two children, and two grand-children. My opinion is that we all use English better than the “Ass”. I needn’t have said that here but I got riled by LM’s unnecessary digression.
                .
                What is sad is that my grand-daughters are growing up without either Sinhala or Tamil, the two native languages of our country.

              • 2
                2

                Although Uptisssa is a really nice man, I cannot dally here. I have to reveal something below this article; something potentially controversial,
                .
                https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/politics-of-easter-investigation-in-a-wriggling-economy/
                .
                One comment has already been submitted, but not approved for you yet.
                .
                It is 03:50 in Bandarawela. My grand-daughter, Kimaya’s tenth birthday is today; her eleventh year on this planet has begun. She must have woken up, in Selangor, Malaysia.
                .
                I must write to her(in English). She also uses Chinese, but that is as bad as Greek to me. So many of our citizens, robbed of our heritage, owing mainly to the doings of the Rajapaksas, and now of Ranil Wickremasinghe.
                .
                chiv, let us unite to throw out all Dictators, so that my grand-daughters can breathe the still balmy air of Bandarawela. Please, chiv. We are one people. Let LM live in Germany with the white people whom alone he likes.
                .
                Whilst typing this, I’m listening to the “Waldstein sonata”, but the Barbarian knows nothing of it. Bye for now, chiv, and also good Upatissa, whose uncle once lived in Kinigama, Bandarawela.

                • 2
                  7

                  Good heavens!

                  • 0
                    0

                    Yes, let us all put ourselves to sleep, listening to the Waldstein Sonata (which by the way AKD mentioned in his 27 .5 minute speech which has 17 comments, all from Bandarawela, between 1.43 am and 3.12 am.

      • 2
        0

        Raj-UK

        “English is an international language from which little SL can benefit.”

        You are mistaken, had SWRD Banda, Sirimao, and their supporters … lived longer than they did they would have raised Sinhala to international standard. Now it is left to people like Gota (itching to give democracy another try), Namal, Basil, Sangili Karuppan Weerawansa, Prince of Darkness Weerasekera, our Surgeon General Silva, Kamala, Champika, Uthaya, …… .. to raise the language as another international language and beyond.

        Hope SJ is closely involved in their endeavour.
        I wish them well.

  • 0
    16

    STUDYING in SINHALA medium and WORKING in Sinhala language are completely two different things.
    /
    The language of the government institutes, Parliament, and courts of law must be Sinhala since it’s the only indigenous language in Sri Lanka.
    /
    Sri Lankan Schools teach English from pre-school to grade 10. But so many students leave school unable to speak or write a single sentence of English. The main reason is the quality of English teaching is poor. Normally 2 years are enough to learn any language. See how those who seek employment in Korea or Japan learn their language within a year or two.

    • 4
      0

      The language of the government institutes, Parliament, and courts of law must be Sinhala.
      That goes against the constitution.
      Do you like a situation where the litigants are all non-Sinhalese and but the court proceedings will be in Sinhalese?

    • 9
      0

      According to Tony,
      “The language of the government institutes, Parliament, and courts of law must be Sinhala since it’s the only indigenous language in Sri Lanka.”
      Now I know why everyone considers him to be a joker!

    • 7
      1

      I really don’t know why some idiots like Tonys are offering repetitions on known facts.
      :
      How many more times do THE KIND OF JOKERS have to stand against facts like those poor people? Sinhala, Tamil and English are the mother tongues of Sri Lanka. If there are more, they are all unique. But idiots like TONY deliberately stand against minority languages because HIS lack of knowledge makes the bugger eternally blind and born idiots.
      .
      If these men go to India and argue that Hindi should be the main language of some people living in Gujarati or Kerala, they will spit on their faces.
      It is very sad to see our SONS of BITCHES remain unchanged, while the world is making every effort to be true, and like the beasts OUR MODA SINHALAYAS are not grasping even the slightest trace of what THEY need to reach it.
      :
      We should be ashamed to see that TONY or the LIKE Sinhalese racists are a part of our nation.

      • 9
        0

        Tony the racist,
        The quality of English teaching remains the same.
        :
        Health remains the same as before
        .
        Media status remains the same as before; Who is to blame?

        Go and look in the mirror, okay? It is obvious, racists like you and Sinhala Buddhist dogs have destroyed this nation.

      • 10
        1

        These are Not Sinhalese or Buddhists!!!??? Tony is not a Sinhalese Buddhist name!!!??
        Probably, Descendants of our 450 year Colonial Portuguese & Dutch Past!? “Kottanchenai” (Colombo 13) is the famous abode!!!???
        They are PAID by the Paymaster of the CLAN to maintain the Vibe for “Nelum Mal” resurrection for the ‘BABY’S’ SAKE!!?? PRODIGAL SON born on the eve of the so-called “Sri Lankan Holocaust” of 1983 and resulting in 30 years’ War!!!???
        They have to regularly post to earn their “BREAD AND SUPPER” sustenance!!!??? No escape!!!
        So they POST and POST, until kingdom come, even if it’s “Rubbish”, who cares, the MONEY is BANKED!!!??? Walk to the bank Laughing together at dismal status of Sri Lanka and Sri Lankans!?
        Any way the erudite pay master, cannot but say ‘Kaak, Kaak’ and if possible Boeing explodes!!!???
        The Portuguese descendant’s would only exclaim, and mutter, “WHAT FOR THE TELLING?” in well refined ‘Portuguese English’, add Colour & Flavour!!???
        Best action IGNORE!!!???

    • 3
      0

      Tony

      “See how those who seek employment in Korea or Japan learn their language within a year or two.”

      Do you think they will permanently settle down in those countries? I suggest they put root there.

  • 2
    10

    let the ones who want to leave leave. period.

    • 3
      1

      a14455

      after all sri lanka is like the revolving door of a barber saloon.

      • 6
        0

        So it was claimed by MaRa!!?? The Messiah Can’t Wrong!!!???

      • 2
        1

        “revolving door of a barber saloon”
        Even swinging doors are for people to come and go.
        The issue is the one way traffic.

        • 4
          0

          thats because we don’t have a good barber.

          • 3
            0

            Dear Shankar,
            .
            We didn’t have a good barber
            .
            We don’t have a good barber
            .
            Unless people’s complacency undergoes a paradigm shift in the coming months, we won’t have a good barber in the foreseeable future.
            :
            I don’t think JVP-led NPP will get Aladdin’s miracle lamp either.
            :
            First of all, please read the current article by Thisarani Gunasekara and learn the “need of the hour” to rebuild society by changing the mindset of our schizophrenic nation.

            https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/unthinking-nation/#comments

            • 0
              0

              leelagemalli

              what i mean is the revolving door barber instead of being careful not to nick the face gives us a lot of cuts and bruises and we go out with a lot of pain.When he is told to stop nicking he keeps telling do you want a good clean shave or not,or do you just want to trim.What is a little blood anyway he says,you should have my brother and he calls out “malli” and hands over razor to malli,who says “i am not a barber but i am a good cuthroat” and with a evil smile hold the razor to my throat.Then the two have a good laugh,slap him on the back and say “joke”.

          • 2
            0

            Or is it because there are very few salons (if at all) with revolving doors?
            So, is the one way traffic for lack of a barber?
            We have competent butchers I think..

    • 4
      0

      a14455 / September 16, 2023

      Unlike you, I did not graduate in SL. So I am not indebted to pay my funds back to the country. I yet help the poor schoolsin SL, becuase I went to school in srlanka and giving is a good human act to my own philosophy.
      .
      Those who leave the country should pay it back so that state could provide the funds to a new set of students.

      In germany, they offer free education but depending on the income levels of the parents, it is decided whether they each student get state funds during their education. However the funds being offered to them as bursaries should be paid back after entering the job life, within 15 years or so. This works rigorously because german law would not leave space to anyone that violates the law.

      I think be them medical doctors or others, if they leave the country should pay their funds back.

      If tax payers did not allow them “free education” at local Universiites, they woudl not have earned their degrees making them eligible to face the job market today.
      .
      SRILANKEN in general are shy to pay taxes because their psyche is based on selfishness. Even if most of them are born sinhala buddhists, but behave like atheists or non-religoius.

  • 1
    1

    “the Language/Swabasha/Sinhala only Act, has been an unmitigated disaster”
    Hear, hear.

    • 0
      0

      Dear Singar A. Velan,
      .
      It’s difficult for us to understand how little education there probably was, (pre-Independence) in the villages where 90% of the villages lived. I know that the Tamils were criminally neglected.
      .
      I don’t think that I’m capable of now conveying all that I want to. Please pardon that.
      .
      It’s true that a place for Sinhala was promised for the purpose of winning the elections, after the Senanayakes made it clear that they would not let go of the advantages that they personally enjoyed.
      .
      Please make do with this unsatisfactory response. I just HAVE to go across here.
      .
      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/politics-of-easter-investigation-in-a-wriggling-economy/
      .
      Look at what I’m going to say there
      .
      Panini

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