21 November, 2018

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When The Person With Sin Casts The First Stone

By Ruvan Weerasinghe

Dr. Ruvan Weerasinghe

Today, 4th April 2018, is the date set for the ‘stoning’ of the Prime Minister of this country. Sri Lankans by now have become famous for seeking and finding a scapegoat on whom our troubles can be cast, that somehow magically solves all our problems! That is until we set our sights on another scapegoat.

To be sure, the Prime Minister of this country has indeed succumbed to the error of blindly trusting his friends and then covering up for them. This was clearly evident in the case of the former Governor of the Central Bank and the former Minister of Finance. As such he has indeed lost his credibility to lead the nation, or the party he represents.

The irony is that, this has been the practice in politics of most recent leaders of this nation: the former President and the incumbent included! The problem in the scapegoat-finding trait we have, is that often, once an appropriate scapegoat is found, all the others implicated are forgotten, even forgiven. In the present case, the culpability of the incumbent President in betraying the trust of those behind the Yahapalana movement, is arguably even greater than that of the Prime Minister. And yet it is he, who in more ways than one, who is the architect of the present crisis in government and the No Confidence Motion (NCM).

At a higher level, the main culprit of the present crisis appears to be the complete lack of experience of our political parties in consensual government. Of course it is easier to rule a country if one doesn’t need to consult anyone else. However, that is only appropriate for the mythical ‘benevolent dictator’ that Sri Lanka has never had – nor will have in the current political culture seeped in expediency and corruption. The President is again the main culprit on this front for ‘running to his mother (party)’ when the ‘marriage’ with the ‘other’ started hitting ‘rough ground’. Instead of taking seriously the mandate given by the majority for consensual government, he has utterly disregarded their voice and gone running back to the very faction of his party that the people rejected in 2015. Surely, a single term in consensual government was not too much for the people to ask for?

If the Prime Minister is unfit to lead the country, as he indeed has demonstrated, then neither is the President, who after all is the head of state. He has not only failed the people who elected him, he has also betrayed the party that brought him to power. He has also been the single most responsible person for the ‘break up’ of the Yahapalana government. While the other party has been mostly silent on his misdeeds, he has been very liberal in ‘exposing the faults’ of this coalition partner in public, even before the recently held LG Polls. Though with as much ‘sin’ as his Prime Minister on several fronts, he has chosen to cast the first stone at him, as though it would somehow ‘cleanse’ himself of any blame. Political expediency of the very worst kind!

Ideal Scenario

This then would be the ideal outcome of today’s NCM: the Prime Minister scrapes through to survive the NCM, but is shaken and humbled enough to recognize that he’s lost all credibility of leading the party and the government; the then resigns of his own accord, to make way for a new leadership within the party and the country; the President as a result of this ‘set back’ to his push for the NCM is thereafter no longer held in any esteem in decision making by the new PM.

After this fiasco is out of the way, the country would need to be lifted out of the present mire that the government has brought it to. A new coalition would have just over a year and a half to ‘get their act together’.

Again, the ideal solution for the way forward is for the MPs in parliament to realize that the only way they could stop the country slipping back to the ‘bad old days’ would be to form a fresh and energized coalition with new partners (purging the old) and to plan for not just 2 years, but for at least 7. This country has had too much ‘party politics’ and short-term ‘runs’ for its own good. It is time to stop comparing our progress under different governments – we need to identify that the real benchmark is the progress of other countries ( at least in the region), and then to buckle up and set our sights for the longer term benefit of our country.

This would of course call for the best of statesmanship from MPs across all parties in Parliament to come together leaving behind their archaic affiliations and be willing to compromise on the non-essentials in order to focus on a longer-term plan for consensual coalition government.

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Latest comments

  • 8
    5

    Ranil is a far more insidious creature than has been painted here, but I agree with the thrust of your argument. More power to you!

    • 0
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      Unlike the Person who has commented; Ruwan is an intellectual and this article clearly shows that his unbiased.
      The outcome of the motion will silent MR’ bootlicker Dayan J and Malinda S, then the jokers like Gommanpila and Viagra Vimal and SAK Kili Maharaja’ Sirasa.

    • 9
      4

      You mean far more insidious than MR? A free laptop was sufficient to keep you quiet. On the other hand, you would have kept quiet anyway fearing for your life!

    • 0
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      Dr. Ruvan Weerasinghe,..

      RE: When The Person With Sin Casts The First Stone

      “To be sure, the Prime Minister of this country has indeed succumbed to the error of blindly trusting his friends and then covering up for them. This was clearly evident in the case of the former Governor of the Central Bank and the former Minister of Finance. As such he has indeed lost his credibility to lead the nation, or the party he represents.”

      That is why one needs a committee, so that these errors could have been avoided.At least there would be somebody, to detect the fraud.

      Mahendran and Ravi are crooks. Did the penthouse fall from the sky as manna?

      How many people really understand the machination and the fraud committed by Mahendran and Ravi?

  • 5
    3

    Thanks! Agree. One positive point however.We never got anywhere near even considering an impeachment in the “bad old days” you refer to. The fact that this NCM is happening at all is a sign of good health in the political atmosphere. We are a very disappointed lot. I too echo your sentiments. But we must not loose sight of the fact that this screwed up marriage did bear a healthy child… We found our political voice, we as a people were able to make January 8th 2015 happen. That was the best thing these strange bed fellows begot! Sure hope our self destructive genes don’t throw this baby out with the bath water.

  • 1
    2

    It is very difficult to believe ‘that the Prime Minister of this country has indeed succumbed to the error of blindly trusting his friends.’ Are we to believe that Ranil is such an innocent person? Are we to believe that he was not aware of what was happening in Central bank during that period?
    Whole country knows that he was living in Batalanda housing complex under the protection of army when many innocent people were tortured and murdered there. The commission appointed to look in to these killings recommended that his civil rights should be stripped away.
    What is happening now at parliament is not finding a scapegoat. A corrupted and deceitful prime minister is getting what he deserves. (But he would win the NCM) and of course Maithree and Mahinda, Basil and Gothabaya and many others also have to reap what they have sown.
    True that the person with sin casts the first stone. Ranil should understand to go and sin no more!

  • 2
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    Ruvan Weerasinghe ~ “When The Person With Sin Casts The First Stone”
    Teams allowed?
    Consider Parliamentary team of 225 MPs. Suppose they bring their own – proportional to sins decided by Karma. There will be stones as heavy as Himalayas and they will need Hanumanic strength to cast. The silent majority will be crushed!

  • 0
    2

    You have a Dr. infront of you. So, what are you looking for, A chairman post or minister post. Ranil with 40 years experience and with his college mates, he didnot know who they were. Ranil thothababa. IF president keeps him any more, PResident should be fired at least when the time comes, if not it is sure, he is looking for only one term.

  • 0
    1

    See USA has a vice president. but he is just there. PResident and Secretaries ryn the country. Senators are there only to debate president’s activities and to ehad different committees. Why not in Sri lanka. Why the Central is under a minister, why not a parliamentary committee.

  • 0
    1

    Just before the PCOLI report PM tried his best to double cross the PResident. You have forgotten what PResident said and what PM was doing. PM was trying to overthrow PResident and to become the PResident durng the Orumiththa govt or definitely after the elelction. Heis going behind gotabahaya and tried it best becuse he know Mahinda Rajapakse can not contest President as he finished his terms. So, he wants to prosecute Onlh the gotabaya rajapakse and tries to nail All the murders on the Defence Secretary and not on the Army commander or the PResident.

  • 0
    0

    Every one talks about the PM, PResident, or in brief various politicians, various parties, various govts such as previous govt, this govt.LAt time they talked about Chandrika’s govt, how chandrika was a CHORA RAJINa, now how MAHINDA RAJAPAKSKE, became one like that. FOR SOME UNFORTUNATE REASON, RANIL did the same but even before he becomes the legitimate PM, that is he was appointed PM as he was the previous govt’s oppostion leader, that is within the first 40 days. IT looks PResident was in the dark for some reason because he took so long to appoint the CIABOC and President apologized to Ranil saying I DID NO KNOW THAT YOU WERE PART OF THIS. (that is what he said). Anyway Ranil thought he is a capable guy but he is screwed up big time. I think, the executive president is not executive. because, even Mahinda rajapakse had to bribe to build the 2/3rd govt. Some how Ranil with the 19th amendment strenghthened him more. On the other hand, what is needed is a change of the system which is difficult to do. Because, Sri lankan political system gontrolled by India, USA, UK, China and by the politicians personal interests. RSo, Ranil , RAvi KArunayake must go. Because, this govt is better than the previous govts. People should think about why we need 225 when PReisdent, PM and cabinet are are blamed for everything. comepare sri lanka with bigger countries who have smaller parliaments. IT is All PARLIAMENTARY FRAUDS what we are witnessing. IT is all within the legal framwork.

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