18 MAY – REMEMBRANCE DAY OF SRI LANKA
Posted on May 17th, 2010

By DR M D P DISSANAYAKE

On 18th May , Sri Lankans  celebrate  the most important day in their calendar.

There is no other day in the hearts and minds of Sri Lankan mothers, fathers and children alike that brings the greatest inspiration to their lives.   We all waited for this day for decades, most times we thought that day will never come during our life times. If  that dream did not come true, as parents we could not close our eyes peacefully,  not knowing what will happen to our land of peace and to our children.   Each day we wake up to read newspapers, thinking Prabha has been captured and war has ended.  But it was a long wait and at long last, our President  His Excellency Mahinda Rajapakse delivered the goods.

Our President has brought our “hope”  home.  Our President has brought “smile” to our faces.   Our President has brought  “courage” to our children.

Adding an extra public holiday to the existing list of massive public and poya holidays is a burden for Sri Lanka.  Yet declaring 18 May as a Public Holiday is vital for our nation. Perhaps the additional Public Holiday currently available for Sinhala New Year be replaced by Remembrance Day on May 18. 

We need to ensure that our children and future generations remember the value of this Day, the struggle and the final chapter of victory ought to be included in the educational curriculum in our modern history.

Jayawewa, Sri Lanka Matha.

5 Responses to “18 MAY – REMEMBRANCE DAY OF SRI LANKA”

  1. PRIYAN WIJEYERATNE Says:

    Jaya jaya we jaya jaya we jaya jaya we jaya jaya we, no more separatism!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. PRIYAN WIJEYERATNE Says:

    Jaya jaya way Jaya jaya way Jaya jaya way Jaya jaya way, NO MORE SEPARATISM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. cassandra Says:

    Jayawewa, Sri Lanka Matha. It is a sentiment that we all share.

    The 18th of May is indeed a red letter day in the country’s history, the day on which the LTTE was militarily defeated. But I believe it will be ill advised to set aside a holiday to commemorate the event. There is an urgent need to reconcile and rebuild and a separate holiday will run counter to this. Rightly or wrongly such a holiday is likely to cause divisiveness, and in the greater interest of national unity and amity, it is best avoided. We can now see how some actions of the past, which in hindsight, we realise were really not that important, led to unnecessary division and dissension in the country. We must be mature enough not to repeat similar ‘mistakes’.

    We can – and should – continue to commemorate 18th May appropriately, without necessarily having a holiday. Indeed, we need to suitably remember the armed services personnel who died and were injured during the conflict, also those from the LTTE who suffered similarly and the many civilians who died or were maimed Such commemoration should serve not merely to remember those who made these sacrifices but to remind ourselves of the futility of resorting to arms and of the enormous human cost that such action entails. Such commemoration should serve as a powerful warning not to allow the same thing to happen again.

  4. orpheusperera Says:

    Dr. Dissanayake is right. It is the most important day for the present and future generations. I think 18th of may deserves to be a holiday, at least half a day.

  5. Sie.Kathieravealu Says:

    Some suggestions that would help to create a UNIQUE SYSTEM OF GOVERNANCE that would ultimately bring in GOOD GOVERNANCE by showing the way out for injustice, discrimination, oppression and corruption born due and bred by the present system of governance that is mistakenly or mischievously termed as democratic by persons who call themselves political scientists.

    “Even the demand for devolution needs to be reframed as a demand for democratization that brings government closer to all the people, not just minorities, apart from being made far stronger than the 13th Amendment, which has loopholes allowing the Centre to take back the devolved powers. Along with the demand for abolition of the Executive Presidency, and further devolution to smaller units, it would give all the people of Sri Lanka more control over their lives, instead of having their lives ruled by a remote power in Colombo that knows little and cares less about their needs”.

    So, it is high-time we start to RETHINK in terms of a solution that would address the ASPIRATIONS ALL THE PEOPLE in the country, not just the aspirations of the Tamils, in a just and meaningful way rather than continue to criticize other people for their “faults

    A UNIQUE concept that moves towards a meaningful and just power-sharing arrangement (not devolution) based on true democracy – a large number of people participating in the governance of the country based on equality, equity – is a great deviation from the usual thinking of the meaning of the word “sharing of power” is given below for the perusal and comments of concerned people.

    The best political solution to address the problems faced by various sections of the Sri Lankan society – particularly the poor, the politically weak and the “minorities” of various categories’ who do not carry any “political weight” – would be to DILUTE the powers of all elected representatives of the people by separating the various powers of the Parliament and by horizontally empowering different sets of people’s representatives elected on different area basis to administer the different sets of the separated powers at different locations.

    It has to be devolution HORIZONTALLY where each and every set of representatives would be in the SAME LEVEL as equals and in par and NOT VERTICALLY, where one set of representatives would be above (more powerful than) the other, which is the normal adopted practice when talking of devolution, in this power-hungry world. It is because “devolution of power” has been evolved “vertically”, we have all the trouble in this power-hungry world. So, for sustainable peace it should not be the present form of “devolution of power” but “dilution of powers” or “meaningful sharing of powers” in such a way that no single person or single set of people’s representatives be “superior” to another.

    This system would help to eradicate injustice, discrimination, corruption and oppression – the four pillars of an evil society – and help to establish the “Rule of Law” and “Rule by ALL” for sustainable peace, tranquility and prosperity and a pleasant harmonious living with dignity and respect for all the inhabitants in the country. Everyone must have similar powers, rights, duties and responsibilities and most importantly everyone should be deemed “equal” and treated “equitably” before the law not only on paper but also practically – be it the Head of State, The Chief Justice or the voiceless poor of the poorest in the country.

    Since all political and other powers flow from the sovereignty of the people, it is proposed herein that these powers be not given to any ONE set of representatives but distributed among different sets of people’s representatives (groups) elected on different area basis (village and villages grouped) to perform the different, defined and distinct functions of one and the same institution – the Parliament – like the organs of our body – heart, lungs, kidneys, eyes, nose, ear etc. – performing different and distinct functions to enable us to sustain normal life.

    In these suggestions the powers of Parliament have been so separated and distributed among different sets of people’s representatives in different areas so as to dilute the powers of an individual representative or that of a set of representatives in any area. (Dilution is better than Devolution)

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