FALLOUTS ON THREE -TERM PRESIDENCY
Posted on June 30th, 2014

By Gomin Dayasri

 To obtain a third Presidential term is improbable unless (a) there is overwhelming support from the people, who are pleased with the ruler or (b) foreign props want to keep the holder in office and provide the necessary loot to keep the populace pleased. Otherwise seeking an extension beyond two terms is hazardous if there is an attractive opposition in the equation.

 To the present holder, the one-way flow of votes from the north is a disturbing issue. He could off set the trend with a counter flow on educating the south of a northern maneuver. Vote from the East might tilt the balance if the majorities in the expanded south are slight. Majorities in the south is the key to the next elections.

It is said irrespective of the popularity of an iconic President, his Ministers or minions may have often done sufficient to foul the air and displease voters over a decade in office. Two – term presidency was an honorable exit route written into the Constitution for a once popular politician to go home with respectability after ascending to high office on receiving a vote of over 50% of the total polled. A third term in office can have a bogey trap set for devaluation or diminution of any Presidential image in seeking to do such overtime. Therefore a new candidate was the option taken previously

 The present incumbent has a war victory behind his name that endeared him to the people and cleared the decks for a third run. Is that sufficient to carry him to victory under the present circumstances? Indeed it is becoming closer. Yet the opposition has failed to name a credible opponent. Having forfeited the candidature last time; UNP cannot afford to chuck it again and desire to be taken as a serious opposition. For the UNP choice is limited; it has to be Ranil Wickremasinghe or Karu Jayasuriya. UNP fears to name the elusive candidate. No other – individual or monk or party (except in the role of spoiler – purchased or otherwise) has the strength UNP possesses at ground level.

 In the domestic front the forthcoming Uva elections are critical both for the Government and the Opposition while a second front is opened for an investigation in Geneva that carry attempts to change a regime, beneath its outward appearance. Results of Uva elections can give the government a whiff of oxygen while the winds blowing from Geneva will carry noxious fumes with which the government might wish to rekindle patriotism.

 The foreign component has a place in the coming elections. West and India would prefer a weak government that will bow to their fancy and consider a Rajapakse administration too entrenched for comfort. What impact could they make to help the Opposition from across seas? They could bankroll campaigns for multiple candidates from the Opposition with a flow of funds (many a hopeful candidate will bloom for the Yankee dollar?) to break core votes in the Rajapakse heartland. Remember India helped the opposition financially at the last Presidential election: against the advice of RAW. West and India can help with such largeness at the coming elections.

 West would want the government carry on with the present economic policies to help the rich and alienate the poor. HSBC global review shows a booming economy at the doorstep: which is not visible at ground level. It sure would bloom for the rich at the expense of the poor and the middle classes? Rajapakses’ leave economics to their advisors and the west has reached their designated target to destabilize from within the palace. At the last provincial election the absentee vote was indeed a worrying factor for the government. At a Presidential election every vote counts; if life is hard, numbers that trek to the polling booth may want a change.

 West is working intensely according to a plan in a workshop in Geneva where a vehicle is being assembled to place it on a collision course to fell our military and political authority on war crimes. Back home, the responses are incoherent, ad hoc and ill timed; at best, reacting is the rejoinder without weaving trends to make our opponents run in circles.

 Consequences are not comforting: obviously when there is no planning or strategizing. We should stand up to the challenge and trade punches with all our resources pooled together? Instead we are engaged in intrigues to gain a negligible distance of political expediency while searching for a good reading of the peoples’ pulse? Eventually we bash each other wildly without forming a line targeting fire at the common enemy.

 Thirty years of brutal terrorism calls for a chronicle of horror. A writing that will receive a passing reference to the LTTE at the Geneva sittings – their preference is to itemize crimes against the military in greater detail. There is no better forum to place a recorder than at a domestic inquiry where witnesses both for and against terrorism whether by state or LTTE on allegations leveled is heard by a panel that should consist of eminent unbiased persons from Sri Lanka and from countries that are not outright hostile. It could hear direct evidence from witnesses lips of 30 years of horrederous acts of terrorism and the allegations of military excesses. A report published locally will have greater authenticity if the panel elected to hear is deemed independent in the public realm. Such an inquiry will make the distant sitting in Geneva meaningless.

 Delay in holding a domestic inquiry will be a substantial objection. There is an answer – sell it as a sequel to the findings by the Commission into Disappearances. Naturally for reconciliation purposes a general amnesty for all from any crime committed during the war period should be on offer: such is not possible at a sitting in Geneva and is a safer surer option. Route most South American countries took after an upheaval. Reprieve brings the disenchanted factor to the mainstream.

 Responsible elements in the Government and Opposition must realize an alien threat is in the offing directed at the nation; there is a crisis looming ahead – it is not a time to play silly politics and score brownie points in Parliament but close ranks to face an imminent foreign threat.

 There must be a national consensus emerging (mercifully leaving the TNA aside as they are a part of the foreign plot) where Sri Lanka must stand as a squad to confront the oncoming peril. Forget the past and don’t think of the future, think of the present; people would be grateful whoever gives a lead to create a national consensus against an international conspiracy.

 It is the Government that must take the role as the frontrunner without looking at it, as an opportunity to decimate their political rivals; the opposition, battered and divided, must not offer conditional support like calling for the 17th amendment or including Rathupaswala when the security forces are targeted. Whom are the government and opposition called upon to support? Remember: at stake are those that eliminated terrorism and made the country safe and secure, for us to live in peace. We owe it to them in the name of gratitude.

 Taking it to parliament is like visiting an amusement park: looked upon with mirth in western capitals knowing the iron fist with which the party whips control their parliamentary flock. Result was obvious and it did not bind the parties to a consensual position. Parliamentary debate is not the answer to the issue at large. It unbinds the opportunity to combine. Government will pat its back by saying UNP or JVP did not vote against the decision they proposed: the Opposition could say they did not betray the nation to side with the enemy. In sporting terms it is a tie: in non – sporting terms they bashed each other sufficiently to provide amusement for western embassies to write home about throwing daggers at each other and directing water pistols at the foreign menace.  

Cannot twiddle thumbs doing sweet nothing with an international inquiry on display. Government took a stand to ignore an inquiry under auspices of the UNHRC. Fair enough, never was a fair trial contemplated. If so, why give credence by participation? Yet, cannot live by merely displaying a ‘no show’ board since the report will be damning. Need do something more to outfox the alien inquiry by initiating a domestic mechanism before the mock trial began in a foreign territory. A bold response with an effective counter is the requisite.

 Instead we react to a foreign movement with a bland response and then go to sleep by doing nothing more. It is most convenient to do little or nothing; as there is no supervision. If a regime change is inspired by foreign sources people will rally around the government, provided the government is not awesomely unpopular due to inflicted economic hardships. Foreign interferences are intensely disliked by the rural majority that knows the true benefits of eliminating terrorism.

 Lakshman Kadirgamar’s presence with his ability to express an opinion convincingly where it is heard and digested is sadly missed at a moment like this! Don’t blame the foreign office – Minister or officials can hardly show results when those entrusted with the homework fail to do their share.

 Elections issues will vary from north to south on terrorism to patriotism; from rural to urban on social elevation/ rural upliftment to governance/corruption; but eventually many a vote will turn on the economic issues, as this government’s financial advisors have been kinder to their rich opponents than to their poor supporters. The oppositions main difficulty will be to wed the candidate to the voter while the Government will have to ensure their soft-core supporters do not abstain from voting. Election will depend on majorities and for majorities to materialize: the voter turn out must be high.

9 Responses to “FALLOUTS ON THREE -TERM PRESIDENCY”

  1. Lorenzo Says:

    Good analysis.

    So the opposition has a few options.

    1. Get people to BOYCOTT the election as much as they can. Tamils and Muslims will NEVER boycott. So only Sinhalese will boycott which favors UNP.

    2. DIVIDE Sinhala voters with Sobitha, Gnanasara, etc.

    3. USE UNP’s rich supporters who control businesses to DISRUPT the economy near the election.

    e.g. Private bus operators always strike near an election. Rice mills are owned by UNPers and they jack up prices.

    4. Get NGOs to work for the UNP.

    5. USE UNP underworld to kill VOTE PULLERS like WW, PCR, etc.

    6. CBK is trying to TAKE BACK the SLFP. She has a few SLFP seniors with her including DMJ, RW, MS, NSS, etc.

    CBK need NOT win ANY election to take back the SLFP to the family. She only needs MR to LOSE the election. Then DISGRUNTLED SLFPers will bring back CBK. So she will support UNP at the next election.

    UPFA should guard against these threats. NR type of jokers’ activity do NOT represent the masses. IF the future of the SLFP is CAR RACING, LAMBOGINIS, RECONCILIATION, BALLROOM DANCING forget about winning votes. UNP people will cheer for these but NOT vote for these. SLFP people HATE these and will vote for UNP for it.

    The bulls that pulled this UPFA cart to victory is GR and the army but the NOISY wheels that get the credit are the likes of NR, Gonason, Minnal Ranga, Hackhim, Rajeewa, Dayan, etc.

  2. Senevirath Says:

    S.L F P voters are fed up with govt B,S. NAMAL IS A JOKER AND A PLAY BOY
    BUT MAHINDA HAS A CHANCE BECAUSE HIS OPONENTS ARE VERY WEAK
    FUTURE OF SINHALESE IS IN DANGER. PATRIOTS GET TOGETHER AND FORCE MAHINDA TO COME TO THE CORRECT PATH . HIS OPONENTS ARE MORE DANGEROUS

  3. NAK Says:

    While agreeing that President Mahinda should be brought on to the right track think that should be done after his reelection, weakening him before the next presidential election could prove disastrous for Sri Lanka.

  4. Hiranthe Says:

    Get the armed forces in alert and put the 13th Amendment to the dust bin. It was initiated by Congress in Endia and Modi will not get seriously annoyed. Russia and China will support us. Also MR has made many new friends in other countries.

    At home, MR will get 95 % of Majority votes and Moderate Tamil and Muslim votes those who sense the danger into which the country is heading.

    CBK or any force can not beat or come closer to MR if 13th Amendment is removed.

    As I can see, this is the only way to bring people together again. If MR is afraid of doing that way, call for an Island wide referendum and show people that you really want to abolish it… The hidden Hela spirit will come back to life.

  5. jayasiri Says:

    All very good & effective suggestions. Did anybody say this to governing party big wigs. I think not. Writing & expressing views are useful , BUT uniting to face the dangers is another. The expat community is active, can bring suggestions BUT WHO will take the issue to obtain the desired results.

    Poor are suffering & they really do not care about politics UNLESS it is about our religion or culrure. What they want is food , a place to live & away from communities who are planning to wreck the country. Be they be minorities, Geneva or Western Mafia, all combined is a formidable force.

    Are Sri Lankans really LOVE their Motherland ? as the saying goes..WE WILL SOON FIND out when the elections are held……..J

  6. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    Outside of the bread and butter issues of the economy the best strategy for a win is to bring the issue of communal problems especially the resurgent rise of LTTE and to tap into the deep resentment felt by the majority of the Sinhalese of the rising Islamic radicalism.

    This is a perilous path to follow but has full of promise. Tap into the rising Sinhalese nationalism and the desire to bring in Buddhist values in a society wrought by war and now the effects of Western Secularism. Now that Sri Lanka has won the Eelam war, she is currently in “war” with the Tamil Diaspora, India and the US in the UN. In addition the rise of radical Islam played with the background of the rapidly destabilized Middle East could propel a party to power.

  7. Senevirath Says:

    IF MAHINDA CRUSH 13TH EVEN THE COMMON U.N.P VOTERS WILL VOTE FOR HIM IF THEY ARE PROPERLY INFORMED AND EDUCATED HOW IT IS GOING TO SAVE BILLIONS OF MONEY FOR DEVELOPMENT AND HOW IT HELPS TO A THUGS- FREE COUNTRY.
    MAHA SANGHA SHOULD COME FORWARD — ALL THE MAHANAYAKAS—– THIS WILL BE THE LAST OPPORTUNITY TO DO THIS BECAUSE MAHINDA HAS TWO THIRD TO DO THIS. WHAT IS THE USE OF MAHANAYAKAS IF THEY ONLY STAY IN TEMPLES

    IF THERE ARE NO SINHALA BUDDHISTS THERE WILL BE NO SANGHA

    SOMEBODY SHOULD POINT OUT TO MAHINDA ABOUT THE FOOLISH ACT OF KING SENARATH– SETTLING MUSLIM REFUGESE IN SINHALA AREAS— redda asse nai daa geneema”””” EXPLAIN HIM THAT IT IS HIS DUTY TO CORRECT THIS IF HE IS A REAL PATRIOT

  8. Nanda Says:

    Now that a lone Champaka exposed Al-Qaida Al- Jihad groups operating in Sri Lanka publically, cracks started to appear in Dengue community.

    “July 01, Colombo: Police beefed up security in the Kalmunai area of Sri Lanka’s Eastern Province due to a clash between two Muslim sects.
    The clash was over the construction of a prayer center of a new Islam sect for which the orthodox Muslims protested, sources say.
    The Police have recorded statements from eight persons regarding the incident.
    The prayer center reportedly belonged to Sri Lanka Thawheed Jamaath (SLTJ) and police say it is located in state land.
    Saindamarudu Divisional Secretary said that the relevant religious leaders would be ordered tomorrow to remove the prayer center.”

    – Findout which group is minutely better and support those Mossies to get rid of Dengue.

    Problem was our buggers fast asleep dreaming fairyland, after sacrificing 26660 lives of Sinhala kollos until their tails caught fire.

  9. Lorenzo Says:

    That is the RIGHT STRATEGY Nanda.

    PIT them against each other so they won’t blame the govt. or the Sinhalese.

    Also PIT Tamils against Muslims. LTTE verses JIHAD will be like aliens verses monsters with total annihilation of both!!

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