22 September, 2020

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The Uncommon Candidate

By Upul Kumarapperuma

Upul Kumarapperuma

Upul Kumarapperuma

Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe has already declared that he will contest at the next Presidential Election as the candidate from the United National Party.

Wickremesinghe has made this declaration in the midst of holding a dialogue with other socio-political forces to put forward a common candidate for the Presidential Election with a minimum mandate on a common agenda, where they would agree to the abolition of the Executive Presidency and introduction of a new Constitution. It is believed that these slogans would be best to challenge the Mahinda Rajapaksa regime at the next key election.

The same declaration has also been made by Mahinda Rajapaksa who has also declared he would contest as the candidate of the ruling United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) at the next Presidential Election. Given the political parties, groups and personalities allied with the UPFA, one could argue that Rajapaksa would also be a common candidate of sorts for his crowd. It could also be argued that Rajapaksa would be the best candidate because of his flexibility in working with different political ideologies represented amongst his own party.

The Sinhala Buddhist nationalism, which is the driving force of the UPFA government, is protected and maintained by parties like the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), National Freedom Front (NFF), and organizations like the Bodhu Bala Sena (BBS) and Ravana Balaya. The political mechanism of the Rajapaksa government is based on this ideology and the above mentioned movements provide a significant contribution in carrying this message to the four corners of the country.

Opposition leader Ranil Wickramasinghe listens to journalists during a National Council coalition party news conference in ColomboAlthough the leftist groups who cooperate with the government do not align with this ideology, with their anti-western sentiments and anti-capitalist slogans they are able to stand in line with Rajapaksa wherever they share the same views. Irrespective of the criticism against the JHU over anti-Muslim campaigns, and allegations leveled by the JHU and other Buddhist organizations against Muslim political parties, all these parties are  capable of working together and Rajapaksa is capable of working with the ideologies of both parties.

The up country Tamils never bear a serious political ideology. However, they have been working together with the Rajapaksa government with their historical experience of working with the party in power regardless of its political vision.

The mindset of the South has been made more antagonistic towards the North, mainly towards the Tamil politicians and their main political party, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA). The campaign launched against the TNA is able to cement an opinion in the South that the party and Northern Tamils bear an inherent enmity towards the Sri Lankan identity. Therefore any move taken up for the interests of the North can be turned in favour of the Rajapaksa government in the name of Sinhala Buddhist nationalism.

The individuals who have crossed over to the UPFA from various political parties have cemented their positions with Mahinda Rajapaksa on a common agreement that fulfils their aspirations. Given this scenario, it is evident that Mahinda Rajapaksa is the most favoured common factor, who is able to work together with all these contradictory ideologies simultaneously for the betterment of his own political cause.

The declaration by Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Presidential candidate from the UNP has taken place when there is a serious criticism and resistance building against him within the party and serious doubts being cast in society of his success at the next Presidential election.

Wickremesinghe has pledged to abolish the executive presidency, but is tight lipped on the alternative to be adopted. He says the best option would be a system similar to the Westminster system, and in the same breath he says the Prime Minister of that Parliament should be elected from a different election to make him responsible for both the Parliament and the general public. In the other words, the political reform which Wickremesinghe is speaking of is a replacement of the word “President” in the Constitution with the word “Prime Minister” and to maintain the same arbitrariness of that office.

It is important to get an idea of the modus operandi of Mahinda Rajapaksa to drive his political ideology into the heart of society. The main factors that Rajapaksa is relying on are the demography of the island, geographical concentration of ethnicities, the international opinion against Sri Lanka, and the internal opinion against international opinion. Seventy four percent of the population of the country is Sinhalese and 70% of the population are Buddhists, therefore the most electrifying slogan of Sinhala Buddhist nationalism targets, covers and caters to 75% of the population of the country. This population is considered as Rajapaksa’s prime vote bank.

It is pertinent to note that in view of the aforesaid circumstances, two factors need to be addressed to engage with Mahinda Rajapaksa – forming a broader socio-political movement with wider participation of influential social elements in the South (with the intention of changing the Sinhala Buddhist nationalist mindset) and the introduction of new political reforms, a new political culture and to groom a leadership that is able to take this slogan from the top to bottom of the society.

A majority of the opposition political parties share the same view on abolishing the Executive Presidency and establishing a parliamentary democracy with a new Constitution, which could facilitate modalities for the establishment of a more dignified social structure.

The JVP has launched a continuing struggle for the abolition of the Executive Presidency from 1982. The opinion of the TNA is similar and their view is to establish a mechanism which is able to secure and maintain a common Sri Lankan identity. In addition to these political movements, the Peoples’ Movement for a Fair Society, a pressure group comprising intellectuals led by Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Thero also advocates the abolition of the Executive Presidency.

By declaring himself as the Presidential candidate, Wickremesinghe has indirectly invited the other political movements to rally around him and the policies of his political party, the UNP. There are hundreds of reasons to reject or ignore this request. Firstly, Wickramesinghe’s proposal does not meet the expectations of the others. Secondly, the endorsement of the UNP manifesto and its candidate does not amount to work with a common candidate and common agenda. The best example of this situation is the JVP’s stance on Wickramesinghe’s declaration, where the party has announced that they would also contest independently if Wickremesinghe emerges as the candidate of the UNP at the next Presidential election.

The JVP’s criticism is that Wickremesinghe has ruined the broader aspirations and perspectives of the people in a common agreement with a common candidate by his declaration. Though they refrain from speaking about it in public, there is a danger of losing their party identity and its basic foundation if the JVP endorses the UNP and its candidate. The JVP therefore cannot be blamed for their decision.

Meanwhile, neither the TNA nor the Democratic Party has expressed their views on Wickramesinghe’s declaration and the Movement for Fair Society is also silent on the issue.

Hence, it is understood that Wickremesinghe has placed more confidence on his candidature from the UNP and his party mechanism and his party stalwarts, rather than a broader political movement with a far-reaching  political agreement, which the country is eagerly looking forward to.

There is no doubt that with his ability to mingle with contradictory political ideologies, political parties and individuals in order to achieve his political target, Rajapaksa has now becomes the “Common Candidate” in the alliance which he gives leadership to and the people who recognize him as their leader.

Wickremesinghe by failing to understand the need to work on a common agreement to change this arbitrary and authoritarian State and its rule and working on his own motion, with his own agenda despite the aspirations of the masses, has now made himself the “Uncommon Candidate” at the next Presidential election.

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Latest comments

  • 2
    2

    RW style of leadership does not show any vestige of commonality or consensus. Being the self appointed common candidate and hoping that others will follow his tail is quite preposterous. Sure formula on how to lose an election once again.

  • 2
    1

    Upul Kumarapperuma –

    “Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe has already declared that he will contest at the next Presidential Election as the candidate from the United National Party.”

    So Ranil W. Will lose. Rajapaksa will be re-elected.

    Is Rajapaksa sending a Thank You Note to Ranil W.?

  • 0
    4

    What a load of garbage ! I don’t think even he knows what he is trying to say.

  • 2
    0

    He said so, but I doubt whether he would do so.

    As world considers him – also focusing on the talks provided to Boston lately, as a good leader though the paralized nation have no brains to get it. Anyway, had RW been the leader of the nation, in no war fighting nation, no doubt, he would have created all kind of good avenue bringing new ways to the nations… This Japan and other folks have got it earlire but not srialnken politicians that beahve not second to most stupidest of the world.

    • 1
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      What a load of garbled garbage ! I don’t think even he (Siribiris punchihami) knows what he is trying to say.

  • 2
    0

    If todays situation Mihin air would be given several more flights can hint the nation gravity of the problems that people of this country faces today.

  • 5
    0

    This otherwise excellent article has ignored two other ‘candidates’, Gota and the military.

  • 2
    2

    What a load of bull! Sounds like Rajapakse wrote it. Wanting to be all things to all men to fool us all. In reality nothing to no one has been endorsed as the common candidate, by the author.

    There MUST be a point of difference! Not just an anti Rajapakse stand. In that Ranil Wickremasinghe has not wavered, though Rajapakse has had the skill to say yes to everyone and done the opposite fooling one and all including the author.

  • 1
    2

    I fought against Racism all my life and the reason why Ranil will never be President again is because he agreed to let me rule my people for 10 years. The Sinhalese racists who are in the majority would never forgive him for that.

  • 1
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    Thanks Upul. Enjoyed not reading what is written by a “nikama” for the ‘nikama’ readers of CT.

  • 2
    2

    Upul Kumarapperuma
    FIRST THIEF, IDIOTIC, LUNATIC, UNEDUCATED DUMB MUTT OF A PRESIDENT CANNOT APPLY FOR A THIRD TERM. IF HE DOES THEN HE DOES NOT REPECT THE LAW WHICH WE ALREADY KNOW. MAHINDAS FREINDS AND CLOSE ASSOCIATED DO NOT REPECT THE LAW THAT WE ALREADY KNOW. DUMB FKING SRI LANKANS LIKE YOU STILL TALK ABOUT THIS IDIOT APPLYING FOR A THIRD TERM?? YOU NEED TO PROTEST AGAINST IT. I DONT FUKING RANIL IS KEEPING HIS DUMB MOUTH SHUT? DO YOU THINK ANYWAY IF RAJAPASSAS WIN (ILLEGALLY) COUNTRY WILL BE TAKEN FROM “WORSE” TO “NEVER RECOVER” STATUS YOU DUMB FK. FOR THE BETTERMENT OF SRI LANKA I WISH THIS IDIOT SEE THE DEATH BED SOON WITH HIS CLOSE ASSOCIATES WHO SUPPORTED HIM.

  • 1
    3

    “Whole of the ruling clan should leave”

    NO!

    GR must stay.

    GR must be the president. Ranawaka should be the PM.

    IDEAL SL GOVERNMENT

    President – GR
    PM – Ranawaka
    Foreign minister – Chris Nonis
    Finance minister – Premjayantha
    Trade minister – Gammanpillai
    Justice minister – Weerawansa
    Education – Sarath Weerawekera
    Transport – Fowzi
    Hindu affairs – Douglas
    Upcountry Tamil affairs – Thonda
    Muslim affairs – Athaulla
    Buddhist affairs – Ven Wimalajothi
    etc.

    Opposition leader – Ranil W.

    • 3
      0

      Idiot gota come to power dont be talking about human rights. You talk about human rights you will be taken ride in a white van and will be killed and vanished. IF they find your body then the judiciary will investigate spend vast amount of money pay lawyers and ultimately will say “you killed youself” . WHAT A FKING JOKERS IN SRI LANKA.

    • 2
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      Lorenzo:
      Your ‘Ideal’ SL Government, Will spell DISASTER for Sri Lanka!
      Hope no one else agrees with you.

      • 1
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        Rationalist

        The Lorenzo=Leela-Nanda=Other avtars are the Para-Liars from Lying Lankaweb, that is full of Shills and whitewashers..

        They follow Double standards and racism.

    • 1
      1

      Lorenzo aka Jim Softy, Leela, Sumanasekera, and Other Paras,

      So, you are the Para, from the so called Lanka-web.

      So you have no shame, like the other liars.

      You have no Shame. You lie. So You must be Para-Sinhala Buddhists in the Land of Native Veddah Aethoo.

      “GR must be the president. Ranawaka should be the PM. IDEAL SL GOVERNMENT”

      They all are liars in The land of Native Veddah has been turned into a land of Liars by the Para-Sinhala, and distorting Buddhism.

      Lanka web is full of liars and Shills. They Claim, right to express opinions, but will not Post Amarasiris’s posts, because it gives constipation and indigestion to the liars at Lankaweb and their shills and whitewashes

      Sinhala Buddhism is an Insult to Buddha. So is Mahawansa an insult to Buddha,

      Mahavamsa- An Insult To The Buddha! Sinhala “Buddhism” An Insult To The Buddha!

      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/mahavamsa-an-insult-to-the-buddha/

      The Lanka web Lie where Lorenzo is Moderator and screener to perpetuate the lies and imaginations of para-sinhala “Buddhists”, in the land of native Veddah Aethho.

      “We believe in Free Speech, Right of Expression that Creates Platform for Dialogue. Therefore we do not moderate every comment posted on this web site. Once filtered through the initial registration process, any subsequent comments can be posted directly on the website to make it truly interactive. However, any abusive comments will be deleted forthwith and contributor’s membership will be cancelled immediately.”

    • 1
      2

      Lorenzo, Nanda, and other clones and avtars.

      “GR must stay. GR must be the president. Ranawaka should be the PM. IDEAL SL GOVERNMENT”

      Here are some candidates for the Para-State…

      Medamulana MaRa placed in inglorious 11th, Gota in 17th slots among the ‘worst people in world history’-Reaches another ignominious landmark

      http://lankaenews.com/English/news.php?id=14421

      Lanka-e-News- 24.Aug.2014, 9.30PM) Medamulana Rajapakse who is ruling Sri Lanka while having his people trampled under his dictatorial boot has been placed in the inglorious 11 th slot among the most wicked men in the world in its whole history counted until today.

      The World Organization ‘The Ranker ’ which bases its rankings on the people’s preferences in various fields has placed Mahinda Rajapakse in the 11 th rank among the ‘worst men in the world history.’ It is significant to note these rankings are decided on the votes of the people of the world and none other!

      Among these cruelest men in world history to date include the worst murderers , Dictators who committed genocide , criminal religious leaders and followers , and demented politicians.

      In the first place in this world ranking is Joseph Stalin , the ex dictator of Russia who planned to kill millions of his people of a region because they opposed him ,by depriving supplies of food to them , and also murdered his own ally by the name of Trotsky with an ice breaking axe since the latter did not fall in line with his socialist ideologies.

      The second ignominious place has been awarded to Germany’s notorious dictator Adolf Hitler groomed by Joseph Stalin who committed ruthless genocides by killing Jews , and was finally defeated by the Red Army.

      Others among the first 10 in the ranking are : Polpot, Idi Amin, Mao Tse Tung, Osama Bin Laden, Kim John Ill, Henrich Himler, Saddam Hussein ,Benito Mussolini in that order.

      When it is the consensus among the civilized population that murderer and most ruthless Medamulana Rajapakse ought to be awarded the first position in this ignominious ranking , they are surprised ,how he managed to slip down to the 11 th slot vis a vis the most vicious ,cruel and wicked record of his detailed as follows :

      Murdering media editors brutally and openly on the streets; causing disappearances of thousands of media personnel and civilians using the demonic white Van; committing arson on countless media Institutions; killing those who came to surrender during the war after requesting them to do so and giving an assurance they won’t be killed; murdering his own advisor by arranging an infamous M.P. a notorious drug dealer to shoot him down in broad daylight in the middle of the road; murdering fishermen who wanted fuel subsidy , laborers who demanded their due pensions and school students who wanted drinking water ; robbing that little gold belonging to the citizens of his own country; hunting for national treasure on the sly; robbing the valuable artifacts in the Museum including the most ancient sword of great historic value; importing explosive devices aimed at killing people with the co ordination and co operation of terrorist leaders jointly; cruelly and ruthlessly ruling the country since 2005 keeping the people of his own country trampled under his dictatorial boots.

      Their argument is , other ‘worst’ people have only committed one kind of crimes , whereas Mahinda Rajapakse had earned the inglorious and ignominious reputation of committing several categories of crimes. In addition another heinous crime has also been begun by him lately – plundering religious sites .

      By browsing , ‘theranker.com’ website under ‘ the all time worst people in history’ heading , all these particulars can be accessed. Even you can cast your vote, if you wish to.

      Please click this link : http://www.ranker.com/crowdranked-list/the-all-time-worst-people-in-history?format=GRID&page=1

    • 1
      1

      Lorenzo aka Jim Softy, Leela, Sumanasekera, and Other Paras,

      So, you are the Para, from the so called Lanka-web. So you have no shame, like the other liars.

      You Say:
      “GR must be the president. Ranawaka should be the PM. IDEAL SL GOVERNMENT”

      The All-Time Worst People in History. There are 4 Sinhala “Buddhists”, Majority Chi stains and some Muslims.

      List Criteria: Horrible, real (not fictional) people who have committed historical crimes. History judges them, and so do we.
      The absolute worst people in history, ranked by the wisdom of the crowd. Who are the worst people in history? This list includes mass-murdering dictators, psychopathic serial killers, sociopathic religious leaders, insane politicians, deceptive political commentators, and annoying celebrities and Hollywood douchebags who make our eyes and ears bleed. Who are the worst people of all time? T

      http://www.ranker.com/crowdranked-list/the-all-time-worst-people-in-history?page=1&format=GRID

      1. Joseph Stalin Born 1878 Christian
      Why is this #1?

      2. Adolf Hitler Born 1889 Roman Catholic Christian

      3. Pol Pot Born 1925 Buddhist

      4. Osama bin Laden Born 1957 Wahhabi Muslim

      5. Idi Amin Born 1925 Muslim

      6 Mao Zedong Born 1893 Buddhist

      7. Kim Jong-il 1941 Buddhist

      8.”Kalaignar’ Karunanithy Borm 1924 Hindu

      9. Heinrich Himmler Born 1900

      10. Saddam Hussein Born 1937 Sunni Muslim

      11. Gotabhaya Rajapaksa Born 1949 Sinhala Buddhist

      12.Benito Mussolini Born 1883 Roman Catholic Christian

      13. Joseph Goebbels Born 1897 Christian

      14. Mahinda Rajapaksa Born 1945 Sinhala Buddhist

      15. Basil Rajapaksa Sinhala Buddhist

      16. Vlad the Impaler Born 1431

      17. Charles Manson Born 1934 Christian

      22. Namal Rajapaksa Born 1986 Sinhala Buddhist, Mother Roman Catholic Christian.

  • 2
    2

    I have just two suggestion to Lorenzo’s dream team.

    1. Ven Gnanasara – Muslim Affairs
    2. Shenali Waduge – Indian Reconciliation Affairs

    • 1
      1

      Nanda

      So you are another clone and shill from Lanka web, where the liars, Shills and whitewashewrs reside.

      Are the following Liars, the Paras the same?

      Lorenzo= Nanda= Jim Softy= Leela== Fathmaa Fukishimaetc?

      Lanka Web Shills are an insult . Shinali Shill Waduge is a Shill.

      Oh Para, para… Why not rot with the shills with Lanka web Shill- shit filled Pit.

  • 1
    0

    Absolutely no doubt, Ranil will deliver the presidency to MARA on a plate.

    However I don’t think the Tamils or the Muslims are going to vote for MARA. The JVP under AKD is also making inroads into MARA’s traditional voter base.

    There will be half a chance of defeating MARA if anyone stands up to be the opposition common candidate other than Ranil. The greatest service RW can do for Sri Lanka at this crucial hour is to step down gracefully.

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