By Malinda Seneviratne –
The story that’s being shared most in social media with respect to political developments in Sri Lanka is Health Minister and Cabinet Spokesperson Rajitha Senaratne’s claim that former President, Mahinda Rajapaksa, will not be nominated from the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP). Senaratne, however, is not the most reliable source of information. His interests in terms of the fortunes of the SLFP, regardless of the position he holds, are dubious. Just the other day he said ‘If Mahinda is given nominations, I will contest from the UNP (United National Party)’. Here he is acting as though he is Chairperson of the UNP’s ‘Nomination Committee’! Declarations from such people should be treated with caution, therefore.
Delve a little deep and one finds that the ‘sharers’ of this story are mostly UNP loyalists. It follows that whether or not President Maithripala Sirisena wants Rajapaksa sidelined, the UNP certainly fears the man. Not without cause, one might add. The last word on the Rajapaksa nomination and prime ministerial aspirations is yet a mystery, with the committee appointed to deliver it hotly disputing Senaratne’s claim. This of course suits the UNP and hence the cheers for Senaratne from that corner of the ring.
Some might think Rajitha has an identity crisis; he’s criss-crossed so much that he deserves to have a new middle name. ‘Ronnie,’ perhaps. The UNP however, does not have an identity crisis. The party knows what it is about: power, benefits for the wealthy, being cosy with separatists. Naturally, ‘power’ is the foremost priority. Nothing wrong in that.
The UNP’s Working Committee passed a resolution demanding that the party ask the President to dissolve Parliament. Again, in social media, this news has spurred loyalists to think ‘dissolution’ and ‘elections’ as imminent. The perception is that the President needs only to be asked and he will deliver. The perception has its roots in the belief that it was Ranil (somehow) and not Sirisena who was elected by the people. Sirisena deferring to Ranil on almost all counts has of course fed this misperception.
But is it only power? Is it only a belief that right now with the SLFP in the throes of multiple crises that makes the UNP beat the dissolution drums? Or is it fear that the Central Bank bond fiasco will explode in the party’s face once the COPE Report comes out?
The UNP’s media machinery is currently in overdrive, planting stories in all media designed to push for dissolution. Part of that exercise is to rubbish the 20th Amendment. Part of it is to harp on the completion of the 100 days and reference to an election promise to dissolve at that point. ‘It’s late’ is the cry. It makes sense from the party’s point of view but it is unadulterated rubbish when one considers the whole gamut of election pledges and the core promise of electoral reform.
Ranil Wickremesinghe and the UNP have shamelessly tried to scuttle the 20th from Day One. It was something that could have been done along with the (much delayed) 19th Amendment. Then the UNP sat on the draft for weeks. Finally, when a draft came from other quarters, the UNP had to act. Now, using the willing and able partner in the crime of scuttling reform, the JVP, as well as smaller parties who have been terrorized by the ‘threat’ of obsolescence, the UNP continues its foot-dragging exercise on this all-important piece of the overall package pledged by Maithripala Sirisena.
It’s not only a matter of ‘striking when the iron is hot’ to obtain greater numbers at a Parliamentary election. The UNP leadership has other things to worry about, especially the COPE report. If, as initial reports indicate, the high and mighty are implicated, then some gooey stuff will most definitely hit the fan. It would be tough to clean up. Wickremesinghe might live to regret the constitution of the dubious and clearly revenge-seeking FCID (Financial Crimes Investigating Division), not to put too fine a point on it.
So there we have it. The UNP is not interested in good governance. Ravi Karunanayake is mimicking the Rajapaksa cut-out politics. Statesmanship and all the promises about righting the institutional arrangement have been flushed down the toilet bowl called political expediency.
And for all the obvious fears that the UNP has about Mahinda Rajapaksa, he might turn out to be the party’s saviour simply because the antics of his key backers might rattle the President to the point that he dissolves Parliament. No Parliament, no COPE; no COPE, no embarrassing findings; no findings, no jail-time.
Ranil Wickremesinge and the UNP needs dissolution like they need to breathe. Rajitha’s anxieties are comparatively mild. So too his rantings. Will the President bite, though?
Amarasiri / June 20, 2015
Amarasiri / June 20, 2015
Why can’t one call Spade, a Spade?
Leelagemalli / June 20, 2015
K.A Sumanasekera / June 20, 2015
I am happy to pay membership fees if this douchebag joins UNP.
“UNP is all about Power, benefits to the wealthy, and be cosy with the separatists”
What a summary.. Thanks buddy..
Can a caring person translate this and send to all the Buddhist Temples where Keselwatta Kid is promising LKR 50,000 each, donated by the Norwegians, Swiss FO, usual Western Buds and perhaps even the British Diaspora belonging to Surendran and Emmanuel..
Banzai / June 20, 2015
If “UNP is all about Power, benefits to the wealthy, and be cosy with the separatists”, would MR be all about power, benefits to his near and dear and being cosy with the kudu, ethanol and other dealers in vice?
Save your membership fees for your own douchebags in your club for creeps.
Point of View / June 20, 2015
Someone has already translated ‘Rogue Rajapakse clans desperate Dissolution-need’ and sent to the Temples ! Now people are protesting against using temples by this abiththaya for his political agenda !
He is kaput ! Can’t you see the writing on the wall ?
gamini / June 20, 2015
You are becoming paranoid seeing the writing on the wall as to what would happen at the next General Election. Like yourself, this Linda and all MR supporters know what will happen to them very soon. All of you are making a great effort to cover up MR’s defeat but be assured nothing can save you all or MR from further defeat. You point out little short comings of the Yahapalanaya which is no comparison to what took place under MR of the magnitude of Murder of individuals who dissented, Fraud committed siphoning out public funds be it the EPF, ETF, National Lotteries, Divinaguma, etc. etc., Blatant suppression of Justice with absolute impunity and the Police force being made mere lackeys. Now you have the Gaul to once again hoist MR thinking the masses will support. It is funny to note that all who want MR back are the one who are corrupt themselves and believe the only way that you all can survive is bringing back MR. So it is not for MR’s love that you all are sweating, but merely to save your own skin because without MR the Rogue and the Murderer you all stand exposed of the crimes you have committed and will have to face the music. Anyway Good Luck as the payback time is fast approaching for all the culprits.
dcn / June 20, 2015
Making a don’t dream. UNP is in the right path. It is UNP’s efforts and hard work that brought Maithre to the throne with the understanding elections on completion of 100 days. Now, various guys in SLFP/U PFA trying to delay the elections and throw out all the rogues and ruffians.
Malinda is still hoping Mahinda could creep through back door and this will never happen with Maithree as he knows how dangerous it would be. You may write many articles again and again but this will not work and you have to learn to live with a strong uNP government for a long period from now.
Jim softy / June 20, 2015
big mouth or loose mouth Rajitha Senarathne is a national list politician I heard.
I don’t think he is capable of doing anything.
Why he is kept as a minister because of politician father or his education ?
TinPotJihadi / June 20, 2015
What happened to the LIES Hon Minister Senaratne uttered immediately after Jan 8th? he claimed that the military was creating 8 man units in the North to disrupt the country so that the Rajapakses can take over. Why was he not chalelnged ? He also claimed there was a coup attempt. Hasn’t he jumped parties for perks and privileges many times? first he was with CBK and they fell out after being her family dentist. Her abused her in filth and slander. Then he joined UNP; rejoined CBK; fell out again, ran after MR and got a great ministry and 2 months before jumped ship to become a minister in Mr. Sirisena’s government.
Jim softy / June 21, 2015
Mahinda Rajapakse had Ten years as the president. IF he could not do it as the executive president, what he can do as the prime minister ?
Why people should be that stupid ?
Bandula Siriwardena / June 21, 2015
Today newspaper reports say Sirisena has
disclose to SLFP peace committee Ranil
Wickremesinghe is working with Mahinda
Cat is out of the bag. This is why RW
slowed down CID, FCID and Bribery
investigations against Rajapaksa and
Who will trust RW at this rate? You
win the confidenece of the people and
go and barter them for secret deals.
What a cunning and ruthless fellow
Srinath. Gunaratne / June 22, 2015
What kind of yaha palana do you expect douche bags like Rajita blows it to the fan,
I think the rattle snakes will start to kill each other very soon!
Chandrika Ranil, aren’t they the most failed politicians in SL? Even a kid is sent home if he fail the same exam 4 times,
Ashoka Jayasinghe / June 22, 2015
Who says Ranil wants dissolution to win the
That is by no rpt no means the reason. The
pseudo democrat thinks that the stink of the
Central Bank bond scam will blow over. This
is why he wants it before the no confidence
motions. This is why he wants it before
the COPE report is tabled. He is caught very
badly. Mr Clean has now become Mr Dirty.