28 September, 2022


The Sirisena Syndrome

By Ameer Ali

Dr. Ameer Ali

What is happening in Sri Lanka since October 26th is something unique in the country’s democracy. At no time before, the nation had been deprived of an elected government. At no time before, since the introduction of the presidential constitution, had the country seen a president whose only consistency has been his inconsistency. At no time before, had minority parties like TNA, SLMC, and JVP been compelled by destiny to unite to save democracy in the interest of generations to come, and at no time before, Sri Lankans are waking up every morning with some consternation looking literally at the DAY OF JUDGEMENT from the judiciary to know the fate of the country, its democracy, economy and most importantly its president. This is a syndrome that President Sirisena, the memorable gamarala from Polonnaruwa, will bestow to the nation as his permanent legacy when leaving the office for good, perhaps “unwept, unhonoured and unsung”.     

Because of President Maithripala Sirisena’s personal hatred of Ranil Wickremesinghe, the elected prime minister and a leader chosen by his party members – whose ineffectiveness and incompetency has been judged by voters already at the local council elections – the president is holding the entire nation for a ransom. He either wants a prime minister to his own liking or no one else. This is why he has declared rather arrogantly, “I am the government”, like King Louis XIV declared “I am the state”. The king of course brought forth a revolution. What will the president bring forth is anybody’s guess. 

In the meantime the open economy of Sri Lanka is left virtually stranded without knowing what to do next. The tourist industry, which is a critical component in the open economy, and private investment on which employment growth largely depends have been hit hard because of presidential negative political stimulus. Rising cost of living, which the RW government callously disregarded to bring under control, continues sky rocketing. It is time President Sirisena takes a few hours to ponder over what is happening in France right at this moment. It is the rising cost of living that has made workers, students and ordinary folks of that country come to the streets and they are now demanding President Macron to quit.  Will President Sirisena who is claiming to be the government do something to avert this fate? People do not eat constitutions Mr. President, but food. It is un-Buddhist to watch Sri Lankan children going to a police station to complain that they are starving. 

Even if the judges were to decide in favour of Sirisena’s constitutional tantrums and travesties the damage he has done to his office will remain historic even if the constitution that allowed him to do so is radically changed. Jayewardena, the father of this constitution wanted to be a king before his death and that was why he wanted an all-powerful executive presidency to redesign the nation’s polity itself to his liking. The economic and political circumstances of that time and his own unchallenged seniority in politics let him enjoy that privilege. The current president wants to imitate him, but time and circumstance have changed. The tragic consequences of JR’s open economy especially when corruption rules economic and administrative transactions, and the inherent dangers of an executive presidency in the wrong hands were amply demonstrated by previous MR regime. There seems to be no improvement under the current presidency in either of them. It is time radical changes are introduced in both.  

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Latest comments

  • 18

    MS lost his credibility and reputation…
    He is politicaly already dead ..
    MR and co use his flush in politics.

    Sooner M&S will left out to be rotten in the dust bin of the political history of Sri Lanka ..
    ( the president ..my thatha) book will be thrown into a dust bin too.
    It have to to rewritten to include all lies and cheats M&S did ?
    Who wants to read the biography of a liar and cheat..?
    Shame on him and
    Shame on his politics .

    • 1

      Dr. Ameer Ali,

      RE: The Sirisena Syndrome = Madman Syndrome

      “Sri Lankans are waking up every morning with some consternation looking literally at the DAY OF JUDGEMENT from the judiciary to know the fate of the country, its democracy, economy and most importantly its president. “

      Thanks for the succinct write up.

      The Judgement day will come either today, Dec 12th or tomorrow, Dec 13th, and Sirisena, the leach, will be scheming new things, as the judgement is very likely go against him, if the judges use common sense and good reason

      This Sirisena Syndrome = Madman Syndrome, was presciently predicted by the Late Dr. N M Perera in 1978. He is like a leach, and will not let go, unless one gets a lighted cigarette butt, and burn his butt. Conferring titles of Traitor, Quisling, Sevalaya, Mala-Peretsys, Parholays, Pachsaya etc.apprently had no effect

  • 16

    The Involvement of Sangha: The Buddhist clergy is getting involved excessively in the present political problems. The Sangha are supposed to advise the leaders – not to create more dissent by taking sides. Unfortunately, that is what 90% of the clergy is doing now.
    Anyway, I announce that I have cancelled the Mura Dana to my village temple in Mirigama area and withdrawn my name from the Dayaka list. I have also cancelled my monetary contribution to the Vihara Library building.
    Of course my actions would have almost unbearable consequences on myself. I am going to miss the Karan Koku Maluwa and other leafy dishes. I am also going to miss the Kantha Samithi members whose only fault seemed to be that they would even die for Mahinda.
    But the country is more important. Without a country there would be no Karan Koku Maluva anyway.

    • 6

      Its the tragedy of the nation. Unlike the other religious leaders, our country has got a set of leaders who sow racist seeds among the people and try to harvest votes in favor of their preferred masters. Right from the beginning after the independence, this has been staged systematically to disrupt the harmony that prevails among all the community. We can not expect anything extra from them.

  • 8

    The statement by the president to Rishad at the UNF meeting is mind-boggling and any citizen in this country will not condone such extra-judicial and arrogant reply. This is where the education comes in for a particular position and if a person is cornered, he or she forgets all the norms and values and shows his or her true color. The elected president should be responsible for all his acts as per the constitution confers upon him. He may become immune under the power he gets through the constitution but not his actions and fall out from such actions.

  • 11

    Thanks, Dr. Ameer Ali,
    Thanks for the many consistent articles you’ve given us over the last couple of years.
    What is said here, has been said in many other articles as well.
    We must now wait patiently for the much anticipated Supreme Court verdict. We’ll have to be grateful to the many who stuck their necks out by petitioning the courts, if we succeed.
    I’ll wait for the verdict before I even think of the consequences if it goes in favour of Sirisena and Rajapaksa.

  • 4

    The Sirisena Syndrome like all other syndromes in Medical terminology will find a place in the BMJ[ British Medical Journal ].A form of Clinical Death!

  • 7

    The majority view Sirisenas and the Rajapaksas as evil and self centered they do not care two hoots for the country though they talk as if Ranil has destroyed the country and not them . When giving judgement the
    Honorable judges must take into account the damage that Sirisena is causing to the country and her people
    By proclaiming that he is the government and all should abide by his orders. What a mess he is creating through out the country no one is safe if Sirisena is allowed to dictate. Rajapaksas seem to be less evil than Sirisena the avenger. God save Srilanka and her people from this man.
    The honorable judges must give their verdict without fear of intimidation and honor their profession by giving unbiased judgement.

    • 2

      Muslim ,

      “God save Srilanka and her people from this man.”

      The late Dr. N M Perera presciently warned during the debate in 1978 on the presidential system, and the powers vested with the president, that when a madman becomes president, the country is in peril. Unfortunately, this has come true in 2018, 40 years later, with Sirisena appointing the Head Thief ( Mahinda) described by Ali Baba and the 40 thieves ( cronies).

      Now there are reverberations that Sirisena has gone mad. Will Mahinda go mad too?

      Sri Lanka, A Land Like No Other!

  • 0

    Ameer Ali

    It is community front (purawasi peramuna) & the UNP, responsible for all these problems.

    Purawasi peramuna directed MS, probably a person of leftist ideas to lead/co-exist in a govt. with RW of the UNP, a rightist politician.

    It was a god given gift for both of them so nobody thought about pros & cons as their thirst for power was so burning.

    Moderate voters were trapped in the promise of gg to make MS the president & RW to PM, both came from nowhere in the prevailed context.

    That was the ugliest incident ever occurred in Sri Lanka’s political history letting everybody helpless, everybody claiming they’re right putting judiciary as well into a challenging task (I assume).

    The actual situation today is only 50% approximately, will whole heartedly agree with SC decision.

    The most favorable thing to the country will be an election unless UNP must propose a leftist minded or @ least a moderate person to PM ship to continue rule with the president till next election.

    People don’t love UNP’s hysterical behavior of depending on & defending uncharismatic & credibility lost RW.

  • 1

    “At no time before, had minority parties like TNA, SLMC, and JVP been compelled by destiny to unite to save democracy in the interest of generations to come, and at no time before, Sri Lankans are waking up every morning with some consternation looking literally at the DAY OF JUDGEMENT from the judiciary to know the fate of the country, its democracy, economy and most importantly its president.”
    There was daydreaming of a similar nature when MS and later the UNP led alliance came to power.
    Do not pin your hopes on the likes of the TNA and SLMC. Even the JVP is not acting in the interest of democracy.
    In bourgeois democracy, the ballot box is the biggest confidence trick played on the people.
    Parliamentary political parties depend on the votes that they can gather to get elected, and will go to any length to get what they want.

  • 1

    All employment in state or private sector require certain educational qualifications, apprenticeship/training. They also have a retirement age and have an employment contract with a job description. Curiously these general rules do not seem to apply to be a politicians, MPs or legislators of the parliament. Yet they have luxurious packages of privileges, allowances and pension rights after serving only 5 years. It is an accepted physiological principle that human brain start shrinking after a certain age and ability to think and make decisions deteriorate with advancing age.
    What we are witnessing today regretably consequence of electing people without minimum educational qualification, lack of employment track records, wisdom and vision. This was amply exemplified by recent disgusting brawls and damage to the state property by so called legislators.
    Country has been ruled by two political parties since independence and people are
    bored of seeing same faces leading our political parties decades after decades. There is no opportunity for young intellectuals with wisdom and vision to rise within a political party. It is timely country introduces minimal educational requirement and retirement age for MPs and their leaders.

    • 0


      1. There’re educated & intelligent people. 2. There’re educated but stupid people

      3. There’re uneducated but intelligent people 4. There’re uneducated stupid people

      Sorry to mention that I have to include you in No 2 or No 4.

      You may argue that educated are intelligent but it’s been proved wrong in any society.

      We can’t discriminate people on differences. so there can’t be agewise discrimination (unless he/she is juvenile)

      Anybody can’t be deprived of the right to be the leader of the country/a representative of people. (unless it’s a kingdom). So though education matters in an employment it doesn’t matter in politics as far as they’re elected by the people.

  • 2

    They say a farmer when he washes the mud from the body is suitable to be a king ,that may have been 500 years ago, with globalization one has to move with time, where values can change but not universal principles. He does not seem to adopt to Universal Principle, but want to be with a set of values which could be outdated in today’s context

  • 3

    Dr.Ameer Ali has really presented the true situation of the country today. President Sirisena’s perilous actions had brought Sri Lanka into what we are today. In 2015, people voted for Sirisena to replace power-hungry Mahinda from power. Now to see Sirisena is trying his level best to reinstall Mahinda Rajapakse again by going back to his earlier standing for which 6.3 million people voted for his plea. Doesn’t it look hilarious? It is like spitting against the wind without knowing the consequences.

  • 1

    After DS and Dudley Senanayake no one who could even vaguely be compared a statesman has taken to politics. Bandaranayake was the Father of racism and introduced the politics of hatred into our body politic. His wife ruined the economy with her kitchen economics. Lowest of the low in every respect were introduced into every aspect of the countries governance and the arrogant and conceited JR put the final nail in the coffin of our nation with his foolish “I’ll be King Forever ” constitution. Rajapakse took us to the very edge of morally bankrupting our country to such an extent that murder, rape, self-promotion, and enrichment of family by any means and the robbery of public property was made to look like common virtues and the smart way to remain in power. And the came The Man Sirisena to bury us alive. Now we languish in shame all over the world with the final display by our representatives in parliament desecrating the hallowed and sacred temple of Democracy, our Parliament. What hope can we hold for a nation so down and out. Where will the Nations Saviour come from, we wonder.I still have hope it will be the UNP who will produce such a person.

  • 1

    There is a follow up for the “Janadhipathi Thathta”written by MP Vasudeva that bears the Title “JANADHIPATHY “insert Vasudevas famous “P……” word here.

    • 0

      You mean Vesideva Nana ?

    • 0


      Double P…. Janathipathi PP.

      Pissu P…..

  • 0

    Dear author your assessment of ranils rule is unfair and idiotic, sri lanka has been saddled with high debt thanks to the rajapakses, furthermore rajapakse linked trade unions like the gmoa were running amok. That being said all growth indices of the country were doing well.
    Ranils rule was a much needed austerity, for a people hooked on entitlement and undeserved excess.

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