19 September, 2021

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‘Vistas For Prosperity’: A Concept That Has No Relevance To What The President Does!

By DNR Samaranayaka –

DNR Samaranayaka

Gotabaya Rajapaksa was the choice of the people to replace the Yahapalana government in 2019; it became a reality with 6.9 million voting for him and electing him as the president. He was very proudly saying that he was elected by 6.9 million people in the country, which is something that had not happened in the past; but he has not said this lately as he knows that this support does not exist anymore. His policy of “I will do what I want” has also backfired. People are beginning to criticize him about his policy decisions. He does not realize that he was elected with 6.9 million is to help the ailing economy and improve the living standards of the people. His focus has been so far is to help his relatives, friends and henchmen although he promised not to follow this path at the beginning. He does not open his mouth on that issue anymore. The large scale deforestation that can be observed currently is partly due to the President’s belief that agriculture is the path to bring the country towards prosperity. This policy is an encouragement to those already involved in illegal clearing of forests. Some are also using this opportunity to engage in large scale logging of valuable trees. He has already started his campaign for the next presidential election with his Gama Samanga Pilisandarak project by making promises that he cannot deliver. People are already calling him a looser due to his failure to deal with issues that matter to the people. The question is who will want him for another term?    

1. Environment destruction under Gotabaya administration

Since the formation of the SLPP government at the end of 2019, there had been a visible destruction of native forests in the country. At the rate of the ongoing destruction of forests, it appears that deforestation is taking place unabated. It was reported in Ada daily paper, on 20 March 2021, that there had been 270 incidents of illegal forest clearings in the country from January 2020 to March 2021 involving 62, 000 acres. According to a recent news item in the Island, the government is planning to release 800,000 acres to corporations for the development of agriculture. Another 24 investors have also been allocated Rs. 24 billion worth of forest land. These are only a few destructions of forests in a large number of incidents reported since 2020. Large scale Logging for timber is also another source of destruction of forests; it has also been intensified under the current administration.

The destruction of forests had been going on under previous administrations as well, but the large scale destruction that is happening now is unprecedented. Articles highlighting this catastrophe have appeared in almost all daily papers recently such as Daily Mirror, Island, Daily News, Financial Times and Observer. These reports have brought this disaster into the public domain. Although the president is aware of the problem, he is behaving as if no such destruction is taking place in the country. He, however, admits that he has requested the authorities to release the lands that have been acquired by the government to legal owners. This policy has given those involved in forests destruction to freely engage in what they have been doing earlier. This is totally against what he preached earlier about his commitment to protect the environment. Since the beginning of 2021, there had been more than 50 incidents of forest clearances in the country. The government has failed to file even a single case against those involved in this disaster.

Forests are needed for our survival

Forests consist of various geographical features such as trees, plants, lakes, streams, villus, wet lands, hills, and rocks. It is the diversity of forests that attracts their presence. Forests are also the habitats of thousands of species of animals. Many animals, big and small, that we had in the past have now vanished due to the shrinking of forests and hunting them for their meat or body parts. Deforestation could also increase hunting due to the exposure of animal habitats. 

The most important contribution of forests is its capacity to absorb CO, (carbon dioxide), commonly known as greenhouse gases. These gases are the result of emissions from burning of oil, coal, and natural gas. Burning of forests is also a source of emission of CO to the environment. The absorbing capacity of CO increases with the size of the forest cover. This is the reason that forests are important for the survival of humanity. Every human on earth breaths in oxygen and breaths out carbon dioxide. Oceans are the main provider of oxygen with about 50% to 80% of total oxygen on earth and forests account for 20% to 30% of oxygen on earth. Normally, the variation of oxygen supply is closely related to the changes in forest cover. When forest cover is reduced, by cutting it down, it is impact can be felt from adverse changes in the environment such as increasing temperature, continuous period of rain fall, frequent floods, droughts, storms and bush fires. It can cause respiratory diseases as well. These issues could have devastating effects on people, economies, and properties. 

Causes of forest destruction

There is a direct correlation between the growth of population and the decline of forest cover. In 1871, Sri Lanka’s population was 2.4 million while the area under forests was around 80%, equivalent to 52,444 square kilometres of the total area covering 65,610 square kilometres. Between 1871 and 1971, the population increased by 10.3 million to a total of 12.7 million. During the same period, the forest cover had declined to about 56% or by 24% of the area under forests in 1871. It was equivalent to 36,741 square kilometres. This reduction was mainly due to the expansion of tea and rubber under the British administration. Sri Lanka’s population in 2020, according to the Census and statistics department, was around 22 million. The estimate of the area under forest cover is currently around 19% of the total land area, which is equivalent to about 12,462 square kilometres. This is the area that is left now under forests. During the last 49 years since 1971, the country has lost 24,273 square kilometres, equal to 37% of the area of the country. As noted by Mr Kamal Gunaratne, the secretary to the defence ministry, the most of the people who are clearing dense forests have the permits to do so. These permits are often obtained with the support of politicians. Since obtaining a permit is not too difficult, the large scale destruction of forest cover cannot be easily controlled.

The increase in population reduces the availability of land per person. This can be seen from the tenfold increase in population density from 37 per square kilometre in 1871 to 370 per square kilometre in 2020. As population grows, the density of population also increases since the land is a fixed resource. This increase will in turn impact on forests due to increasing demand for various human needs, such as food and housing, the two basic needs of a growing population. There are also various other reasons that influence the increase in the demand for land. Replanting programs have been going on in the country as a solution to deforestation, but they have not produced anticipated results to compensate the illegal felling of trees. Although replanting helps environment, it cannot replace the ecosystem or the bio diversity. Even if replanting can help the recovery of natural forests, it could take at least 20 to 25 years to grow a tree to maturity. Most replanting programs are not very successful and are rarely continued to the completion. 

The Presidents’ response to deforestation

The president does not believe the claims of a large scale forest destruction in the county. His focus is mainly on rural farmers using their traditional lands for agriculture. He has instructed the officials to release those lands that farmers were cultivating earlier and later taken over by the government and classified them as forest lands. This is the key issue in his mind that is referred to as deforestation. Any idiot would understand this is not about one or two acres of forest land cleared by farmers. It is about the continuation of thousands of acres bulldozed by president’s henchmen. Even if thousand farmers encroach 2 acres of land each per year, the total clearance would be only 2,000 acres. The forest destruction is about the clearance of thousands of acres at a time by organized groups with the support of the leadership. The president has so far not said anything about the large scale destructions of forests by his henchmen; He behaves as if nothing is happening, but the entire country knows that it is a huge environmental disaster.

Methods used to clear forests destroy the entire echo system and the animal habitats. The elephants are the worst affected by continuing deforestation. The daily Mirror on 05.02. 2021 published an article under the heading “When poor elephants can’t fathom political thinking”; it highlighted the ongoing destruction of forests in the country. Perhaps the most disturbing item of this article was about the Dahaiyagala forest cover in Bogahapattiya and Udawalawe wild life corridor, which had been declared as a sanctuary in 2002; this declaration was due to its link between Udawalawe and Lunugamwehera National parks, which are frequented by elephants. During a recent visit to this region, under ‘Gama samanga Pilisandarak’ program, the President had discussed this matter with some officials of the Department of Wild Life. Despite being this corridor a sanctuary, the president, after the discussion, decided to release the lands of the people who have deeds. 

Human elephant conflict

In countries like Sri Lanka where there is a sizable elephant population, the human animal conflict is a continuing problem. The grievances of the people living in elephant corridors are mounting, but nothing is heard from the elephants so far. It is not because they have no grievances, but they do not have the political support unlike the humans. Those supporting the existence of animals are from the Department of Wildlife Conservation; but they are frequently under pressure from those engaged in illegal clearing and also from politicians, who are also engaged in illegal clearing of forests. This problem does not have an easy solution. The President is taking the side of the people because of his policy of promoting agriculture. We cannot, however, ignore the importance of wild life; they have been living here even before the human settlements. They also bring scarce foreign exchange to the county from tourism. At the rate of elephant’s deaths at present, it might not be too long for the country to be without elephants even for the Kandy Perahara. When this happens, the elephant human conflict will be settled in favour of the people.  As reported in Ceylon Today on 12 march, 2021, by Sawani Seshadi, the number of deaths of elephants had been 1,578 since 2016 to the end of 2020. During the first 61 days of 2021, another 61 had died. The only option is to protect their habitats and return their habitats lost to encroachment by farmers and others and create other opportunities for those people affected by this policy.

2. President’s Gama Samanga Pilisandarak progam  

A few months ago, President Rajapaksa commenced his highly publicised program known as the Gama Samanga Pilisandarak, a program that helps to understand the village life. Up to now, it has completed about 15 visits by the president and his entourage since its inception on September 25, 2020 in Badulla district. This program has been subject to criticism by some and the president has replied to those criticisms claiming that it is how he runs the country as the president; he would like to meet with people in the villages and provide solutions to the problems that they face. It is, however, not a program that covers the entire country, but limited to a few selected villages. The manner in which the villages have been selected remains unclear. The objective of this program appears to be not what the president says. It is very clear that the program is intended to make him popular among the rural population. The president is also getting some good reviews about what he does in the villages. Some such reviews have come from people normally criticise him about his administration. Of course, there are also critics; they call it a bluff.

The entire program is pre planned and the officials who accompany the president appear to have visited the region earlier. These officials, representing various departments, are well versed with the issues that villages want to bring to the notice of the president. (It may have been possible that the people would have been told what to ask.) The moment that a problem is asked by someone in the ordnance, a member of his entourage comes to the front and inform the President that everything is already done to solve the problem. If it is a problem of pipe bone water, then a person from the Water Board takes over the problem and says it is almost done or that they are already working on it. Another common issue is the need of a building for a school and again someone appears representing the Education Department and says that they have already drawn plans for it. If the problem is a playground (which is the most common issue) the President hands it over to the Army. The officials accompanying the president have the answers to all the problems, and everything goes very smoothly. Villagers are happy for the opportunity to meet the president and they go home with hopes of getting their problems solved. However, the villagers will soon realize that the promises made by the president are unlikely to become realities. Consider the following list of promises made by president at the 8th program at Aluthwewa village, 100 kilometers from Moneragala town. The village has 790 families with a population of 2794.

(1) Playground for Kotalawehera Manakada Maha Vidyalaya. (President also promised an Auditorium) (2) Sevanagala Okkampitiya and Kotawehera Mankada Schools to the Status of National Schools, (3) Education centre with adequate facilities for disabled students in Aluthwewa and surrounding villages (4) Play grounds in in all school in the district, (5) New roads  up to Aluthwewa, kilimbunna, kalutota, Kotawehera, Makanda and By-roads and Agricultural Land Roads and Bridges in the area (6) the Ministry of Water Supply and Drainage to Kumbukkan Oya Project (a project that planned in 1952 but still not commenced) (7) Restoration of 10 tanks including KuKulktuwa tank, (8) Auditorium to Kukulkatuwa school (9) Drinking water to villages in Aluthwewa (1s0)  Psychiatrist clinic covering Thanamalwila and Moneragala area (11) Renovation of elephant fences in the district. The President also instructed the authorities to fill the vacancies of teaching staff in schools and medical staff in hospitals. In addition, the President instructed the authorities to take immediate steps to address the shortage of teachers in the district and to develop playgrounds and other infrastructure facilities. The President stressed the urgent need to identify natural water sources in the area and to use them in order to meet the drinking water needs of the people and in schools.

On the face of it, it is a good project as it addresses the need of the people. If the project becomes a reality, it will certainly boost the image of the president, which is what he wants the most. The most crucial problems are the absence of a plan and a budget. Without a plan, neither the project nor the detail plans can be prepared. In the absence of a budget, there is no allocation of funds to commence the projects. As noted above, the president has made a number of promises such as school buildings, roads, stadiums, auditoriums etc., but he was not aware of the total costs of all these projects or how these projects are going to be financed. The president had made verbal promises and the people were very happy about the outcome of the discussion with the president. The only project that is possible is the playground, which he hands over to the Army. If the land is available, the Army will take over the responsibility of building a playground.  It will take a few months for the villagers to realize that the promises that the president had made are not going to be a reality. In the case of the projects listed above, the final cost to complete all the projects could be close to Rs. 3 billion. This is only for one village. Just imagine the cost if more villages are added. The government does not even have the money to spend on the projects that were included in the 2021 budget. All these projects are now forgotten and the hurry to complete these projects at the time of the election no longer exists.

The president appears to have no knowledge of the number of villages in the country. According to Wikipedia, Sri Lanka has about 10,000 villages. Even if the village is taken as a DS division, the number of such divisions is about 375 in the country. The president has so far completed visits to 15 villages. The last discussion with the villages was in Walapane DS division on March 20. It has taken more than 6 months to visit 15 villages since the beginning in September 2020. Assuming he can visit 25 villages per year, he may be able to complete about 100 villages during the next four years. If each program attracts about 25% of the people in the village, which is about 700 people with an average population of about 2,800 people per village, the president will have the opportunity to meet about 70,000 villagers over the next four years. This is very insignificant number compared to a population of 22 million in the country. The villages that he is not likely to visit during the next four years outnumber the villages he is likely to visit. These villages will not even have a playground.

The President has said that his decision to contest the presidency in 2024 depends on the support of the people. This statement gives the impression that this program of visiting villages is a prelude to his aspiration to be the president again. With the Gama Samanga Pilisandara program, he has already started building his support base.

*The writer is an economist.

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Latest comments

  • 33
    4

    This is Rajapaksas blockbuster SHAM. As I always maintain most Lankans can be fooled all the time. Some of Indian cinema has depicted such village courtyard scenes. Rajapaksas have made it into an art.

    • 23
      2

      Sri Lanka government has asked permission from UNESCO to build a pond inside Sinharaja forest reserve. So much for the big talk of sovereign nation. Why can’t they tell UNESCO off and build the tank, like how they are dealing with UNHRC.

      • 4
        1

        Ghana,
        .
        I appreciate your sarcasm, so giving you a Like.

        • 0
          0

          Sinhala_Man: I don’t agree with you. This matter is not and should not be “Decimeled” to sarcasm. That expression of “Ghana” could be the best way to condemn the Government and its “Independence” and perhaps “Sovereignty”.He must, in my opinion, tell the world (the public) what a “World Heritage” means and why and how that must be “Preserved” and “Protected”. There are so many such “World Heritages” declared and no Government can “Excercise” its “Sovereignty” and carry on activities that would “Endanger” the “Existent” and “Survival” of such “World Ownership”. Asking “Permission” to do a “Project” that challenges its survival is bad in “Principle”, but shows, the “Recognition” that “Applicant” is “Aware” of the responsibility and who “OWNS” in decision making. Let us wait and see what that “AUTHORITY” is going to do, on the “Application”. In the meantime, let us tell that “Authority” our views are on that “Application”.

      • 1
        12

        Dr. Gnana Sankaralingam,
        Building a pond in Sinharaja and dealing with UNHRC are entirely two different things that should be handled differently. Sinharaja has be declared as a ‘World Heritage’. Therefore, they have to take permission from UNESCO. Use your brain before you use the keyboard.

    • 10
      1

      This seat was then occupied by a donkey from Polonnaruwa. Now it is replaced with a Buffaloe who is not even an abcdician in Srilanken politics. As of today, we have lost almost everything on International Stage. GSP plus and fisheries related industries would not work well in upcoming months. Nor would srilanken expatriates flow their funds as had been before. Most of those labourers in ME, Italy and the like countries have lost their jobs. Nor would IMF be happy with the records set sofar in human right violations. So what will be the only way out to come out of from the pit the country is fallen in. I wish Rajapakshes would be hated forever by the very same voters that paved the way them to return to power and ruin this nation.

      Yesterday Honourable MP Harin Fernando made it very clear, that the bugger who is higly alleged to have ignored EASTER SUNDAY BOMB warnings was given 60 min to defend while only 10 min for each MP to explain about the disaster in that parliamentary debate. However, Gotabaya the most known ANDARE of the DAY, has been attacked by all various groups in and out o fthe country TODAY. This we warned if a bugger who is alleged to have committed high crimes would become the leader of a nation. So, people cut their neck by their own. No future hopes at all for a comfort.

      • 0
        0

        Dear LLM: I understand your frustrations (so with many, many), Don’t you think the time has come to move away from much “Condemnation” to “Building” public opinion feeding information and allowing the “Freedom” for a “CHANGE”? In my opinion, this is very much “Lacking”. The PEOPLE have NOW come to a stage, “What” to do and “Where” to look for. That is very “OPPORTUNE” time and “FERTILE” ground to “FEED” and provide “FERTILIZER” to make that “CHANGE” happen. These most important: “WHAT” and “Where” are not yet coming to the PEOPLE. Unfortunately, the “OPPOSITION” and some of the “MEDIA” are not doing it “Properly”. Today (26-3-21) there was a TV program titled “Aluth Dawasa” from “News 1st”, on this subject of “Environment Destruction”. See it on “col3neg”. It was “Disgusting”. The “Host” trying to “Imitate” another such “Pamuditha” and completely “Destroyed” the:”THEME” and the “OBJECTIVE” of the subject matter. This is what is happening in this country. Very sad to say we are not on the correct path, yet.

  • 12
    5

    Elections are not won in Sri Lanka by catering to the Colombians. They are won at the village level.

    lets see what the PC elections say ?

  • 41
    2

    Keep in mind the majority of Sri Lankans did not want the corrupt Rajapaksa’s back until that terrible Easter day attack, which worked to HIS advantage. Suddenly social media was filled with statements saying only HE can save us. As a result he is now (unfortunately) our president, who has failed to control the pandemic, implemented racist policies, jailed people without explanation at will, and has threatened journalists, an old habit that he cannot get out of. He has also handled the UNHCR very badly, showing his usual arrogance, bravado, and attacking nations, some that have given us loans and aid, and made us look like pariahs in the world arena. Nandasena was willing to join the band of world pariahs, hoping they will save us. Huge failure.
    Our economy is tanking, and he is not competent enough to turn it around, having appointed crooks, war criminals, and liars in high positions. His supporters have drunk too much of the Koolaid, and will continue to blindly follow him, so don’t surprised if he wins the next elections again. All he has to do is bring down the prices of rice and coconuts, and make the streets clean again. People will easily forget the Sugar scandals, jailed activists, eroding of our laws, and be easily impressed.

    • 1
      6

      Ashan,
      Unfortunately for Tamils but fortunately for Sinhalayo.

      “As a result he is now (unfortunately) our president,”

  • 23
    1

    Where did we go wrong in SL to have below average Human beings to govern the country? The opening up of the Ceylon Law College for Young Parliamentarians who hasn’t passed the GCE advanced Levels. I doubt that they passed the exams legitimately. What happened to the WHISTLE BLOWER on how Namal R had sat for the Law college final.
    He opposition groups have to unite with good policy ideas to take power from the Autocratic rules

    • 11
      0

      Mr Naman, you should try and get a kattadiya to resurrect Jeyaraj Fernandopulle to disclose how big boy Mahendra R, a library attendant at Vidyodaya prior to entering parliament, passed his law exams. It might also be useful to ask JF how he died.

      Like Daddy like Baby, so no surprise how sub-normal Baba passed his law exams in the comfort of his air-conditioned office.

      And don’t forget Nandasena Baappa… he has already earned the right to not one but two PhD-s, by his own confession.

      So no one can say that we poor Lankans are ruled by fools.

    • 0
      0

      Naman

      I recently saw a documentary on Netflix about a scam in the US to provide admission to Ivy League colleges through a ‘side’ door. Back door admissions already exist legitimately by a donation in the region of over $20m but the side door admission system is cheaper, around $5m, by giving a donation to an ‘education fund’. The mastermind behind the scam ran a tutorial service preparing candidates for admission tests which guaranteed a place in a prestigious Uni of choice. The candidates were portrayed as sportsman or woman of less popular sports, such as, sailing or water polo with photoshopped images of the candidates in real events & arranging private exams with only the invigilator present who has already been bribed to switch the answer scripts. The FBI wire tapped the parents involved & many celebrities were fined & faced jail terms. So the impressive qualifications of the Rajapakse brats are not surprising when education systems are questionable.

  • 5
    1

    Dear Bhagya Duwe
    Something More Than Force
    for you, who must feel the absence of this absence

    I

    It’s a sharp august dusk
    and I say to you all,
    now I am sadder than ever.
    Perhaps nobody knows
    as you do, my love,
    now that I’m only
    a long succession of cries
    inside you.

    Far away,
    with blows they have broken my joy
    in your body,
    still they can’t understand my hands
    that so suddenly ripped
    the dark wind from your face.

    II

    They don’t want
    my rivers
    to flow in you
    They don’t like
    your wings
    to fly to me.

    They want to ignore
    the gesture of your lips
    and they’ve put a dark cross
    on the name you love
    to repeat
    over the planet.

    But, love,
    they cannot erase your heart
    in the far away depths of your breast
    as it beats my tenderness.

    They can’t, love,
    tear you from the heights
    you live in my eyes.

    They can’t my love,
    rip you out of my life
    because, like the sea,
    I too keep something of your name
    in me.

    Lanka Matha

  • 1
    0

    In day-to-day commerce the dictum “caveat emptor” applies, meaning “let the buyer beware”. Particularly, in third world countries, the dictum “let the voter beware” applies. Aren’t those got elected trustees of the public? POOH! In fact, even in first world democracies the term “politician’s promise” applies. Isn’t the conduct of the politician in power now (2019 – to-date) and those of other regimes in the past are such that they are a law unto themselves, the main task being to earn for seven generations? (King Louis of France – “L’etet! L’etat ce moi!”). Unless the writer does have a lot of spare time to write articles of this nature, the incidents stated here are to be expected and is nothing new to the keen observer. The real issue is that the democratic system we live in such that we give a blank check to the politician for a given period for the fellows to romp and destroy the country. We must have a system where it is possible to recall those who got elected whether it is local government, provincial government, or the national government. Then the fellows can be put on their toes.

  • 1
    0

    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.

    For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2

  • 7
    0

    The basic flaw in this “village visit”program is thinking “instant localized problem solving” can move a country forward.
    All managers who have a proper knowledge on management, knows that in a large organisation – the country is the largest – it is the correct system of procedures and delegating duties and responsibilities that propels it forward and ticking away to success. (Unlike a small retail boutique).
    If everyone waits for the Head to give orders, then there will be slowing down and lack or contribution of good ideas by others in the actual field of activity as this contributes to the final outcome. Plans can be drawn but correct implementation is the key – not ad hoc spurts of action.
    In fact a monumental blunder was when HE said ‘damn the circulars’ – my word is enough. So how can anyone think of a proper framework within which to take decisions.
    So instead correcting our Administrative and our Field Services Administration( engineering and other supplies) so as to function by a line of responsibility from the top to the bottom freely and evenly, there will be a mess. Unfortunately, this Structure that existed up to our Independence was shattered by politicians who brought everything under corrupt politicians who became the last know alls in every sphere of activity.

    • 6
      1

      In passing I must mention an apt remark I heard.
      Earlier we had a Grama Sevaka who tried to be a President and now we have a President trying to do GS’s work.

  • 3
    0

    Soon one can see Thondeswaram later named as Dondara from Naguleswaram at Keerimalai. Thondeswaram and Naguleswaram are two of the five hindu ancient panchaeswarams long before buddha came into the scene. Now with this Nandasena’s jungle raping programme it will become a pilgrimage site for millions of hindus from India and elsewhere. It is going to earn billions to SL in foreign money. Besides now SL maids are invited to Bungle Desh and Pakis-Tan since ME does not want them because of Sinhala Buddhist atrocities to Muslims. So thinks look very bright and by the time Nande finish his term there will be milk and honey flowing from the north to the south.

  • 4
    0

    MyView
    You are right. People like you should be selected to be the CLOSE ADVISORS to the President. A President of whatever IQ [Emotional +Intelligence] level, IF SURROUNDED by good,sound and sensible ADVISORS can become a true STATESMAN & bring our country up the ladder.

    • 3
      0

      Yes no Head of State is infallible and it is the team he/she selects around him/her that is the motive power for the Head, to only guide the ship of state. This is true of any organisation ending in an entity called a country.
      In SL, every President or PM had obligations to pay for their wins and so to pay them back, they surrounded themselves with hangers on.
      None were truly sincere.

  • 6
    0

    A very big thanks to the young activist Bhagya and Rajapaksas for making her the next Greta. People from all quarters have now started asking about her. Canny Rajapaksas inadverently create martyrs (refusing memorial for Thileepan) and activist (harassing and threatening) , just like Pakistan did to Malala and Trump calling names at Greta.

  • 3
    0

    The average villager/cultivator has a limited education & is not concerned about sustainability, the eco system or the wild life. He is only interested in land for cultivation as a livelihood & any wild animal that destroys his crops should be eliminated. Many of the town dwellers too, are concerned only about their day to day survival. As for the majority of Parliamentarians, including ex President Sirisena & his corrupt clan, it is surprising that they even went to school judging by their stupid remarks & actions, as well as, utter lack of self respect. Despite boasting of high literacy rate in SL, it is largely limited to read & write only & lacks the ability to think critically. This is the vote base of the SLPP & it works well for the uneducated politicians.

    It is encouraging to see the younger generation are concerned about the environment & it is their future but for many of us, like the frogs in the well, living in denial is better than facing reality.

  • 0
    2

    Is there a connection between sudden surge of environment lovers and the Government’s effort to increase domestic food production to reduce dependency on imports?

  • 3
    0

    It is time for the Singhalese to know that most Tamils want to live and work towards the betterment of the UNITED SL. No one is aiming for a divided country.All of us want a country where there is Law and Order/Disciplined security Forces/ Jobs are given onmerit basis/ the National coffers aren’t stollen or wasted by the rulers/ harmony & religious and ethnic harmony. Without standing UNITED we are NOT going to achieve anything. Sad sad situation

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