The Lankaweb Weekly Editorial



The Blatant Persistence Of Unilateral Presidential Assent Towards Effecting the P-TOMS May Be Her Undoing!

Once likened to the matriarch of the Nation, a title her late revered mother fully deserved with circumspect doubts about her daughter's claims to it, the President of Sri Lanka has probably frittered away her credibilities to lead the Nation of Sri Lanka to the posterity and well being so many Lankans dreamed about. Instead of fortifying the Nation and its defences against the perils of a fully armed terrorist group ever capable of running amok again should they be unquelled, she seems to have provided them with platforms towards this exact same purpose!

She has made a grievous error according to many analysts in forcibly installing the P-TOMS as a parliamentary investiture involving and hence lending credence to an internationally proscribed , unrelenting terrorist group the LTTE, who appear to have got away lightly while continuing to remain being fully armed terrorists, their illegalities uncontested by a President who sacked the previous UNF regime on the grounds that it provided too much leeway for the LTTE and compromised the Nation's security, leaving a befuddled Nation to ponder upon its real future from a security perspective while making light of the implications of her actions shrugging it off as an administrative matter which the more discerning such as the JVP, the JHU and many others in opposition to the P-TOMS view as highly contentious as well as being constitutionally illegal.

Taking into consideration that these are dangerous terrorists whose ruthless destructive power once almost brought the Nation to its knees, almost eliminated the President and whose attrocities against the Sinhala Nation continued for decades and wrought havoc on the lives of its citizens and crippled its economic growth in astronomical proportions! the rationality of the President's actions becomes very questionable? Whether it be the huge carrot of Foreign Donor Tsunami Aid pledged conditional to the signing of the P-TOMS as proclaimed perhaps erroneously or an imagined concept of lasting peace with the LTTE who are probably chuckling at what was denied them for decades and now having it presented to them on a platter as a means to further their quest for secession, in either case the President's motivation can only be construed as totally irresponsible and in contravention of her obligations to the Nation as its Chief Executive Officer, a Nation whose Sovereignity and Territorial integrity regardless of her rhetoric has been put in jeopardy!

Time will surely tell what is in store for the future of Sri Lanka where there is one conclusive argument about the President's own future, which putting it mildly appears to be somewhat bleak !The sheer strong armed approach towards exercising her unilateral will (with a little bit of help from the NGO supportive superpowers of the West, Norway and the United Nations ) has positively irked the wrath of the Nation which has been a helpless audience to her tactics of
tear gassing her former coalition partners the JVP, members of the Buddhist Clergy represented in parliament and their supportives in the streets protesting against the P-TOMS agreement (contents previously undisclosed to the Nation) , alienating herself from some of her own allies in Parliament for the acquisition of 3.2 billion US dollars which ironically she could have acquired without the P-TOMS as it was never a precondition laid down by the donors but perhaps the manifestation of an eccentric pipe dream at the end of which she erroneously believed she could accomplish a lasting peace with the terrorists!

An interesting excerpt very relative to the current state of affairs in Sri Lanka from the latest issue of the Asian Tribune needs to be quoted with all due credits to its writer a former prominent Sri Lankan Journalist now domiciled in Australia which goes on to say" The principal architect responsible for all this is President Kumaratunga. She thought she was going for the biggest deal that would crown her career and where has she ended? To begin with, she is left high and dry without a government to back her. That is not all. She has single handedly managed to sink into a hole which no other leader had been in before. For the first time in the history of parliamentary politics a political leader has managed to swell the ranks of the opposition to a staggering Two Thirds – a powerful bloc strong enough to impeach her if they unite. Her overtures to invite the UNP to form a government have been rejected by her arch rival Ranil Wickremesinghe. Now she has neither the Left nor the Right to keep her going." end quote which rings emphatically appropriate towards the realities surrounding the President today!Perhaps prophetic words which say it all and leaves the credibility of Sri Lanka's President teetering on the brink of absolute doubt towards whether this Presidential faux pas will ever be forgiven or forgotten should the terrorists use it towards their advantage and the detriment of the Nation.

The President has been quoted as saying in justification of her actions that "the P-TOMS is a “confidence building” measure that could kick start the stalled negotiations with the LTTE on a peace deal." as part of her efforts to placate an angered Nation whose mood is being demonstrated to a greater part on the streets and in front of diplomatic housings supporting the conglomerate of NGO backed demands towards a settlement of the Tsunami Aid issue.

It seems a National tragedy that at the end of her term President Kumaratunga has fallen from the grace of her ever trusting subjects, namely the Sinhala Nation where she has also managed sadly to cross swords with every community opposed to the very existence of the Tamil Tiger terrorists – from Sinhalese and Muslims to dissident Tamils. She has lost her credibility not only in the hub of Parliament but also in the provinces where no one seems to be willing to place their trust in her anymore. As a further twist to the irony of what the President's actions have projected, when the donors honour their pledges and pour the money into the Sri Lankan Coffers it might as well be asked" will there be a government to utilize the funds for reconstruction and the rebuilding of Tsunami devastations? " There is every reason to now believe that the President of Sri Lanka has given the opposition an irrefutable mandate to get her out of office and oust her from the Presidency whereas it was once thought she would only end her term in 2006. If the opposition eventually overwhelms her authority through whatever legal and constitutional means available she will have only herself to blame!



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