The way to make President Rajapakse win the next PE and make all Sri Lankans win along with him
Posted on October 30th, 2009

By Ian

In 2005 presidential election the people excluding the voters of north, voted almost equally to two candidates giving a slight edge to the current president. How did the voting percentages increase substantially after the war? There were a small percentage of new voters. But the main reason for the increase is due to some voters who voted for the UNP candidate in the 2005 presidential election voting for UPFA after the defeat of LTTE.

Why did a section of the voters who voted for UNP candidate subsequently voted for UPFA? In my belief the reason is they though UPFA is a better is safeguarding the territorial integrity of the country. Many UNP supporters believe the liberal attitude and the pro-west stance of the UNP leadership will not be conducive to the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka.

All political parties naturally have parasite supporters who support parties for personal benefit. They don’t care for the country or for a party. But the crowd that overnight shifted to UPFA are the UNP supporters who put country before self benefit.

The recent issue with the Former Army Commander and some people voicing their opinion in support of the candidacy of the popular General gives a very clear message. The message is they continue to care for the integrity of the country rather than blindly supporting a candidate.

Putting an end to separatism Vs ending to LTTE

It is important to understand the difference of separatism and LTTE to understand what is happening in voter minds. Many are aware that defeat of LTTE is not the end of separatism. In fact many separatist believe the defeat of LTTE is better for the future of the ealam. The reason that they can convince and win the support of the western countries without the terrorist label. The economic refugees are also in a better footing without LTTE label. Therefore one can argue that defeat of LTTE may lead to separatism in the future.

How can the defeat of LTTE be a win for the separatism?

If with the defeat of LTTE the separatism ended the Diaspora separatists would have gone to their enclaves and gone silent. This didn’t happen. The western countries who were our supporters have become our enemies. It happened due to the intense separatist activity. It is very clear that the separatist are trying their lobbying and influence with the west to win federal or similar concessions.  Their cry is past, present and future discriminations by the majority. The separatists have infiltrated enough political establishments in the west to reach this goal and such infiltration will continue in the future too. Their sole intention is after obtaining devolution with support of the west, to commence the next level of agitation campaigns for another fee decades to win a separation.

How to avoid this pit fall?

The only way to avoid this pitfall is to find a solution to “ƒ”¹…”discrimination cry’ without resorting to devolution of power based on ethnic lines. Many writers have pointed out the use of bill of rights or anti discrimination acts as the solution. This is the safeguard for the minorities the western countries have given. Nothing more nothing less. Therefore these western countries cannot demand from Sri Lanka more or devolution on ethnic lines as a solution to so called discrimination.

It is also holds the key to handle the Common candidate issue

Coming back to the General Fonseka issue, what is playing in the minds of the people who shifted their support to UPFA from UNP in provincial council elections? One issue may be the corruption and family rule. Political corruption is not new to Sri Lanka and nor is family rule new. In my view the biggest fear playing in the minds of the people who shifted their support to UPFA is what will happen after the presidential election.

Analyzing the mind of the voter who shifted from 2005 voting to 2009 voting is the key to maintain the winning pattern.  The voter may be wondering on the following in considering whom it supports in the presidential election.

(a)     Would electing UPFA candidate as president lead to extensive devolution on ethnic lines? Will that lead to separatism in the future? This fear is aggravated by reports of so called secret agreement with India to win their support to the war. The Indian reports of promises of extensive devolution once the war is won have not been dismissed. It is a fair reservation as when a person says that solution will be given after the presidential election one can wonder why? Is it because the “ƒ”¹…”solution’ if given before could cost him the election? If that is the case is it a solution that will not be acceptable to the masses? If that is a solution that is not acceptable to the masses is it one that could lead to separation of Sri Lanka in the future? These are fair and crucial fears that a person who is keen to safeguard the integrity of the country could have.

 (b)   Or having or supporting an anti-devolution candidate will be beneficial for the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka.

Rather than doing this very important political thinking and analysis, the current Government is going on a path of vilifying the General. They should rather convince the population that it has the qualities what they are looking for. The UPFA should convince country is safer with them as much as with the General. Continuation of the current campaign will distance the UNP voter who started supporting UPFA and push them to a common candidate who support territorial integrity or push them back to UNP.

My advice to the current president is to give that assurance that supporting UPFA will not lead to devolution after the Presidential election.

How can UPFA give a convincing assurance?

The UPFA and its leaders have displayed that they most of the time give promises they don’t intend to keep. They gave many promises to JVP that basically won them the presidency and chased them away after winning the presidential election.  Many other pacts and people have been used and discarded. The credibility is an issue of statements and assurances.

How can UPFA convince the voters to the people who shifted from UNP purely because of their love for the country to remain with them?

They need to thoroughly convince the people they defeated LTTE to safeguard the territorial integrity of the country. Towards this they need to carryout comprehensive constitutional amendments to make any kind separatism or devolution on ethnic lines impossible.  To win the support of the non UPFA parties towards this they should couple this with extensive bill of rights or anti discriminatory laws to the constitution that will safeguard the minority rights.

Fully implementing the 17th amendment will also take many voters away from UNP and anti UPFA blocks. This together with bill of rights or similar minority protection legislation coupled with extensive anti separatist constitutional amendment will most definitely win the UPFA the next presidential election. It will win Sri Lanka credibility in the western world. Lastly it will be a comprehensive win for every citizen of Sri Lanka. What else citizens of Sri Lanka ask for? They get the assurance of integrity of their country protected by strong constitutional provisions. Minorities (ones that are without ulterior motives) gets constitutional protection against discrimination, other kind of discriminations (such as political) will end, and the Independent Commissions as envisaged in the 17th amendment will take politicization away from the day to day life. It will also be a win for Rajapaksas and UPFA as they could rule the country for several more decades.

Although a skeptic, I sincerely hope our motherland will be fortunate to have the president and the other leaders of the government thinking in these lines.  Unfortunately the chances however are that the current present will win the PE somehow and give extensive devolution that will be the starting point of separation of the country in 50 or so years, and we will never see the benefits of 17th amendment. I pray that I’d be proven wrong.

One Response to “The way to make President Rajapakse win the next PE and make all Sri Lankans win along with him”

  1. Priyantha Abeywickrama Says:

    Dear Ian, your article carries one of the most important and decisive factors contributing to the current political uncertainty in the country amongst the usual hubris that I heard from English language users offering many analyses. It is the territorial integrity that goes to the heart of the Sinhala people for a very good reason that I referred to in a previous comment. No matter what or whoever holds power, any attempt for separation of land or exclusion of Sinhala people will bring a devastating impact on non-Sinhala migrant communities, which cannot be described here and we will support with everything we got to regain Sinhala land. Obviously, we are no longer a group seeking Nirvana or engaging in donations or offering our children as bonded slaves under misguided suicidal beliefs like during old days, which contributed to this menace. Whoever tries to harm Sinhala heritage should be aware of the consequences that are even beyond their imagination. It is true that we strive to protect lives of those who desire to live, but we also know that taking lives is just the opposite of our actions and omissions.

    Referring to your English inspired solutions, whatever anybody tries to offer as a solution is not going to work, as there is none that works. If you try around the globe, others are doing it much worse under trying conditions to keep their societies together. Though many migrants living in English colonies may propose measures they have heard or seen in their adopted countries, all these bright ideas have no value except the utterance of beautifully phrased words. Being somebodies in Lanka, who have become nobodies with an irrelevant presence in their host countries, we may be just adding salt to their already festering wounds. Actually, those who are born and grown up within English School of thought led by MR, RW, JVP and the like have done more damage than solving our problems. If this kind of destruction continues, it will be the English-following minority that hold sway in our country who will face the extinction very soon.

    If giving into what they ask for can satisfy Tamils, it is just daydreaming. Without knowing the actual history of the world including creation of ethnic identities, looking for a solution may be nothing but trivial. What Tamils do may be also the best thing for Sinhala people to learn a good lesson for abandoning their responsibilities, as there will be no end to this problem until a global level response is implemented. This reminds a recent incident in our country involving a wild elephant (may sound like Tamils) that attacked vehicles moving on a nearby road to seek attention to save three little elephants stuck in the marsh. Sinhala people being of the non-interfering nature, the current saga may be an eye opener to see the injustice meted out to the whole world by one of their own creations left loose without thinking of the horrible consequences (You may not understand this, but inserted as a record for future reference).

    IT IS TIME FOR ONE OF THOSE HISTORY MAKING EVENTS THAT MAY NOT BE WITHIN YOUR GRASPS AS ORDINARY BENEFICAIORIES OF A GREAT CIVILISATION. WIHTOUT WHAT HAPPENS AROUND US, THERE WOULD BE NO CHANGE. IT IS TIME FOR UNRAVELING THE CURRENT ORDER TO MAKE WAY FOR A MUCH BETTER LIFE FOR ALL WHO WOULD SURVIVE THIS TESTING TIME. IT IS A TEST TO PICK WHO DESERVES LIFE. Not knowing history or the cycles of evolution, there are many among us trying to offer solutions, which are more like blindfolded men trying to smash pots hanging by strings. There is none among the current leaders who got a clue to what should be done. Have you asked why they are pleading for people to come out with solutions? As you said, they have used phrases stolen from others to sound like great people, but can they deliver?

    This is our problem too. Then, do we have THE BEST SOLUTION? Yes WE DO. This is where the difference is. It is not a change of pillows, but the logical next step in the human evolution process outside the forest pioneered by Sinhala people. We do not offer it until these morons who think they are the geniuses reveal their nudity or disappear into oblivion. It is the extended version of Sinhala knowledge that we all enjoy today under various bogus ownership schemes and will not be implemented until those inimical to Sinhala people are disappeared. You may now understand why they hide behind various guises and delay offering solutions while pleading for help.

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