Rajapaksa ‘politically vulnerable’ ahead of early Sri Lanka polls
Posted on October 24th, 2014

Courtesy DEUTSCHE WELLE

Nearly two years ahead of schedule, Sri Lanka will go to the polls in January, with Mahinda Rajapaksa set to run for a third term; a move likely triggered by the President’s fading popularity, says analyst Alan Keenan.

Sri Lanka Präsident Mahinda Rajapaksa Colombo

“There will be presidential elections in January,” Cabinet spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella said on October 20, failing to name an exact date. The move is seen as an attempt by President Rajapaksa to seek a fresh six-year mandate amid signs of fading popularity.

Rajapaksa, who first came to power in 2005, scrapped the two-term limit on the presidency soon after winning re-election in 2010. The 68-year-old is under intense international pressure to probe war crimes allegations and promote reconciliation with the country’s Tamil minority following a decades-long civil war. He has also been accused of rights abused and nepotism.

In a DW interview, Sri Lanka expert Alan Keenan says there is growing discontent at the high cost-of-living and lack of an economic peace dividend in Sri Lanka, with many analysts arguing that while Rajapaksa is still the clear favourite, the longer Rajapaksa delays the next election, the smaller are his chances of victory.

Alan KeenanKeenan: ‘The longer Rajapaksa delays the next election, the smaller his chances of victory.’

DW: Why would President Mahinda Rajapaksa call a snap election Sri Lanka nearly two years ahead of schedule?

Alan Keenan: President Rajapaksa and his advisors appear worried by the relatively poor showing of his United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) in recent provincial elections. While the UPFA gained a slim majority in the Uva province in September, its share of the vote fell dramatically from preceding elections, with the main opposition United National Party running a surprisingly strong campaign. While Rajapaksa is still the clear favourite, most analysts believe that the longer Rajapaksa delays the next election, the smaller his chances of victory.

Why is Rajapaksa’s popularity fading?

There is growing discontent at the high living cost and a lack of an economic peace dividend, despite the regime’s numerous post-war Chinese and Indian-funded infrastructure projects. Corruption, including among members of the Rajapaksa family, is widely believed to have reached unprecedented levels.

The president’s popularity is further damaged by concerns over the rise in violent crime and abuse of power by ruling party officials at all levels of government. Rajapaksa has never been popular among Tamils, and support among Muslims is evaporating in light of the government’s continued tolerance of the violent anti-Muslim campaign led by the militant Buddhist groups.

There seems to be some controversy as to whether Rajapaksa is legally entitled to run for a third term. What is your view on this?

According to a growing number of legal experts, the language of the 18th Amendment to the constitution, pushed through by Rajapaksa in September 2010, did not in fact remove the two-term limit for Rajapaksa, but only for future office-holders. This is despite the clear assumption by the Rajapaksa-controlled parliament of the time that the amendment would apply to the incumbent president.

Regardless of the proper legal interpretation, however, no one expects the Supreme Court to void Rajapaksa’s candidacy, given the proven loyalty of the current chief justice, installed in 2013 after the widely-condemned government-organized impeachment of his predecessor.

Who would Rajapaksa be running against and what are his chances of winning the poll?

For the first time in years, Rajapaksa appears politically vulnerable. The opposition, however, remains divided and uncertain about its strategy. Efforts have been under way to win consensus for a common candidacy that would unite the opposition on a platform of constitutional reform, beginning with the abolition of the executive presidency.

The largest opposition party, the United National Party (UNP), itself badly split, appears to be planning on running its own candidate. This would likely fracture the opposition, with as many as three or four candidates running against Rajapaksa.

How do elections in Sri Lanka work?

Should no candidate win an outright majority on the first ballot, the top two candidates receive the second preferences from those who voted for the remaining candidates. This has never happened before in Sri Lanka, and there are worries that a second round could increase the volatility of what many expect to be a violent election campaign. A number of political observers express fears that President Rajapaksa and his powerful family members may not agree to leave power peacefully.

What impact could the election have on the minority Tamil population and reconciliation attempts?

A Sri Lankan boy displays a cutout of President Mahinda Rajapaksa during a street march, in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Monday, Feb. 27, 2012
(Photo:Gemunu Amarasinghe/AP/dapd)Keenan: ‘Rajapaksa appears politically vulnerable, but the opposition remains divided and uncertain about its strategy’

Rajapaksa’s campaign is likely to rely heavily on Sinhala nationalist themes, with the president claiming that only he can preserve the nation’s hard-won victory over terrorism and prevent the revival of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), which, he claims, is backed by local and western conspirators.

The current wave of repression of independent journalists and civil society activists, especially those who work in Tamil-majority areas in the north and east, could well intensify. There is little prospect for renewed negotiations with the elected Tamil leadership or for a relaxation of military control over the north and east.

Could the election affect Pope Francis’ planned visit to Sri Lanka from January 13-15?

To avoid the politicization of his foreign travel, the Pope generally declines to visit countries within a month of an election. With indications that the presidential election will be held around January 10 – on a date and at a time reportedly determined by the president’s astrologer – it would appear the papal visit will need to be rescheduled.

Analyst Alan Keenan is Sri Lanka project director at the International Crisis Group (ICG) in London.

63 Responses to “Rajapaksa ‘politically vulnerable’ ahead of early Sri Lanka polls”

  1. Lorenzo Says:

    He is surprisingly accurate on many things!

    Where is the peace dividend?

    It is going to Jaffna in Yarl devi. Only for Tamils.

    SUMMA FOR SINGHALESE.
    TOTALLY FOR TAMILS.
    MAS KADE FOR MUSLIMS.

    Welcome to SL where the ALIEN MINORITY rules the NATIVE MAJORITY.

    Am I wrong?

  2. Nanda Says:

    “There is growing discontent at the high living cost and a lack of an economic peace dividend, despite the regime’s numerous post-war Chinese and Indian-funded infrastructure projects. Corruption, including among members of the Rajapaksa family, is widely believed to have reached unprecedented levels.”

    – Some of us are proud of new roads. We are paying 5.6 billion per year, servicing the loan for Southern Express Way and getting back 1 million only. This way clearly evident for ANY AMN WITH A BRAIN who has travelled in expressways of other countries for years. Yet the desire to see good roads in our motherland overcome our ability to see the reality.

    Any reader who followed the comments on Lanka Web by Lorenzo, Aloy, Douglas and writers such as Mario, Dilrook and Shnali since 2009 will know who are the FOOLS .

  3. Nanda Says:

    UNP Hambantota District MP Sajith Premadasa said in Parliament yesterday that his party was ready to extend support to the government to pass a resolution to demand the European Union to re-list the LTTE as a terrorist organisation. –

    He is the first to suggest this. What MR did was accusing Ruin-ill with extreme personal greed only. Never suggested wise, correct approach to this national problem.

  4. Nanda Says:

    Thank you Lorenzo for the big list. I believe most of the above commentators honestly want their motherland to prosper and be proud of it, not doubt. But unfortunately the level of wisdom affect them. They are all human. It is difficult to keep the mind pure under various pressures and craving- we all are not enlightened.

    For me , I don’t bother about the leader who he is. I have no attachment to the person.
    I have attachments to Sri Lanka and Justice to all beings.
    I praise the blameless and wise people. I give them fullest support possible.
    I condemn thieves who rob the country with too much greed, attachment to low comfort and to partying..

    But I am aware of the reality. I know thing do not go to my liking and that is how the world is.

    Anyway, I prefer to change the statement “MR’s achievement” to “Sri Lanka’s achievements”.

    He was ” a nothing” when he was under Chandrika. I remember clearly my good friend ( his very close relative) told me
    ” they will not allow Mahinda Ayya to come to power”. I thought he was the man to put the country in right direction , then.
    He has achieved a lot. Huge achievements personally, and historically.

    But he has betrayed the motherland and Hela people very very badly and going to do more to harm the Hela people to achieve more personal goals and low comfort. The fool thinks he live forever.

  5. Ananda-USA Says:

    Lorenzo,

    Thank you for the itemized list of “Supporters” and “Concerned Critics” of MR, but I think it is unwise of you to take upon yourself the responsibility for labeling and characterizing other people’s positions.

    If you really felt compelled to do it, you should have polled the individuals themselves and given them the choice.

    I will also mildly note that QUANTITY alone does not decide the issue, but QUALITY of the individuals, and their motives as displayed through comments made at LankaWeb over a sustained period, matters as well.

    Let us not underestimate the enemies of Sri Lanka who are expert at disguising themselves, and posing as concerned citizens acting in the best interest of our Motherland, especially on the eve of critical events affecting Sri Lanka, such as the upcoming Presidential elections. We have seen this phenomenon manifest itself many times in the past.

    Furthermore, many of the people whose names you listed are not regular commenters at LankaWeb, so much so that it is anybody’s guess as to where they really stand on this particular issue.

    I also think that among those listed as opposing MR, you have WRONGLY listed some people such as

    2. Neelamahayoda
    5. Dilruk
    6. Shenali
    7. Douglas
    8. Aloy

    who are pro-MR, or are at least NEUTRAL on the issue, while you have completely neglected to list some others, such as Samanthi.

    The bottom-line is that while I unabashedly support the President for all of the reasons I have argued vociferously at length elsewhere, you should not have taken it upon yourself to label and do a head count of other commenters at LankaWeb. We are all adults; we can decide for ourselves.

  6. Ananda-USA Says:

    This article by seemingly impartial “DEUTSCHE WELLE” is just another of the many attempts, based on sheer desperation and forlorn hope, that we will see before the Presidential Elections trying to move heaven and earth to get some sort of a “ball rolling” against MR.

    The VAST MAJORITY of Sri Lankans do not haunt blog sites; but they are the people who will vote and re-elect President Mahinda Rajapaksa by a LANDSLIDE, not jaundiced foreign journalists of uncertain pedigree.

    I remember expert prognostications by seeming “foreign” journalists of impending disaster for MR in the last Presidential elections. They VANISHED WITHOUT TRACE after the election results were announced, just as all of the Eelamist bloggers predicting the TRIUMPH of UNCEASING WAVES over the Sri Lanka Defence Forces, and Kilinochchi becoming the “Stalingrad” of the Sri Lankan Army, disappeared overnight of May 18, 2009.

    So it shall be in this election also. The VAST MAJORITY of the Patriotic People of Sri Lanka will not forget who saved their skins, restored their pride in their Motherland, is transforming their country in a way that no other government has ever done before, and gives them hope of a brighter and better future in the years ahead.

    Internet naysayers forecasting gloom and doom for MR don’t represent the voters; they are SIMPLY IRRELEVANT to what will happen in the Elections!

  7. Nanda Says:

    I to believe this website is not impartial. propaganda material is LTTE.

    Assuming only RW and MR is contesting my estimate is as follows. I am not going to explain it.

    RW MR
    SB 70 0.35 24.5 0.65 45.5
    SC 7 0.8 5.6 0.2 1.4
    TH 9 0.7 6.3 0.3 2.7
    TC 1 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5
    M 10 0.9 9 0.1 1
    O 3 0.9 2.7 0.1 0.3
    100 48.6 51.4

    One thing sure is that all depend on the group “SB”. It will be a FOOL who ignores this group.
    IF (JHU+BBS)produces a candidate, Ruin-iLL will win.

    This is the crisis we are facing. We have a know devil (RW) and unknown, very suspicious Allah.
    People should become Muslim now, otherwise devil will win.

    I too believe JHU is in a good position to twist the arm of Allah to make him Buddhist.

  8. Nanda Says:

    By “this web site” , I mean “DEUTSCHE WELLE”.
    Lankaweb has always been pro “those who love the motherland” and very honourable.

  9. SA Kumar Says:

    sorry LW- Wong I should be in not unhappy(happy) list .
    Because… Hon MR
    1) liberated 297,00 from Vanni.
    2) run Yaldevi to Yalpanam now.
    3) on it way to bring (2020) Mahaveli to Iranamadu Kullam.

    in War…
    We Saiva Thamil padai lost to Bhussist Sinhala forces at Mullivaikal on 19 May 2009 that is different matter .
    live & lets live until Eelam war V.

  10. Wickrama Says:

    Nanda, “We are paying 5.6 billion per year, servicing the loan for Southern Express Way and getting back 1 million only”

    Can you please explain HOW we are getting back “1 million ONLY”

  11. Wickrama Says:

    Nanda, Lorenzo, others.

    The problem is not whether we are unhappy with MR, but are we happy to REPLACE him, and if so with WHOM ?

    Can all of those who are HAPPY to replace MR, indicate the ALTERNATIVE, please?

  12. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    THIS IS NOT A COURT, TO GIVE UNCALLED FOR COMMENTS ON COMMENTATORS TO THIS FORUM, JUDGE MAHA DANA MUTTA.

  13. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    YES, Wickrama !! There is nobody on the Horizon who has the Political Will, the Courage, the Knowledge, and Ability to run this country.

    The traitor Rats who are eyeing the cheese have absoloutely no clout to BELL THE CAT. THEY ARE SEWER RATS.

    MR HAS GIVEN THE FREEDOM TO THE PEOPLE TO TALK FREELY, BY ANNHILATING THE TERRORISTS. THE KNOWN DEVIL IS BETTER THAN THE UNKNOWN DEVIL WHO HAS A BLACK HOODED ESCORT ALWAYS NEXT TO HIM.

  14. douglas Says:

    The observations made in the main article are correct even looking at the present situation faced by we Sri Lankans. In a sense if an election is held it is going to be “Vulnerable” both the MR and us.

    In one respect if an election is held and MR wins, my fear is he will continue to make a “mess” of things more and more unconcerned of the big problems we are put into. If this present day trend continues with an accelerated space, we citizens will suffer. Then on the other hand, if an “Opposition” candidate, whether or “common” or “uncommon” wins, we still do not know for certain what will be in stock for us, because as at date no “common programme” or what we could expect are not spelled out clearly to us. So in other words it would be an “unknown deveil” doing things in his or her own way, because the Executive Presidency provides necessary power and it has been already shown to us and we are experiencing it already. It would not only be a continued but would be done in an accelerated space. There too we would be at the receiving end and the winner will be the “Big Winner” for himself/herself, family and friends. With this scenario the question lingering in our minds is :”Where are we and what we can look for our own salvation”?

    Having analyzed this present situation as above, in my opinion MR must postpone the election and run his balance period of two years. But he MUST make up his mind and take IMMEDIATE ACTION TO PUT THE HOUSE IN ORDER. He must clan up the stable, get rid of the lame horses, whether they belong to the family or friends. Establish faith and confidence of the people on the JUSTICE SYSTEM, RULE OF LAW, GOOD GOVERNANCE, LAW AND ORDER and show us and the world that he “MEANS AND DO NOT TOLERATE ANY TYPE OF NONSENSE” under his management of the affairs of Governance.

    If he postpones election he need not fear the allegation Justice System being partial, if the election is challenged in courts, that which I expect to happen. That is a winning situation for the already tarnished Judicial system. Then on the other hand MR has a good chance to CLEAR A MESS and prove himself to be a LEADER measured in all respects of leadership qualities and capabilities. Then if that happens we will be the ULTIMATE WINNERS. We can happily LIVE THEREAFTER. The BIG QUESTION : WILL HE OR WOULD HE BE ABLE TO ACT LIKE THIS?

  15. Lorenzo Says:

    Wickrama and SW,

    There is NO ONE to replace MR among the challengers.

    Run-nil, Sobitha, Gonzeka, Viggie, etc. are UNWORTHY even to print their names on ballot paper.

    That is why I ONLY said those UNHAPPY with MR and STOPPED at that.

    BUT should we just say THERE IS NO ONE BUT MR and continue with his disasters? No way.

    In 2001 SLFPers said the same thing. Run-nil and UNP are terrorists so people should stick to Chandirikka. People DIDN’T. What happened?

    That paved the way for MR to come forward – a WAY BETTER leader than Chandirikka and Run-nil.

    We should overcome this BINARY thinking and think BIG. SL deserves better than these 2.

  16. Lorenzo Says:

    Ananda,

    ALL you say is correct for MR BEFORE 2010. After 2010 he is a different person.

    “I will also mildly note that QUANTITY alone does not decide the issue, but QUALITY of the individuals”

    In an election it is the QUANTITY of votes not the quality of votes that matters!

    e.g. Even a rehabilitated terrorist with blood in his hands has the same vote as a soldier who lost a limb fighting to save SL.

  17. Marco Says:

    Douglas
    Thank you for your analysis and comment.
    At the outset we need to realise that Mahinda Rajapakse is a shrewd and perhaps a conniving politician but not a Statesman- far from it.
    I’m at a loss as to why he would or should hold a Presidential Election 2 years earlier than expected. The popularity of himself and his Parliamentary Coalition runs concurrently. He currently holds a 2/3 majority in parliament, unless he feels that the 2/3 will be eroded in a Parliamentary election and threaten by it. From experience we know that the Executive can dissolve parliament. We all know the 2/3 that he enjoyed over the years has been there to strengthen his dictatorial powers whilst feeding some crumbs to the Neanderthal politicians who are quite willing to soak it up on short term gains.
    It is highly unlikely he would enjoy another 2/3 majority without the unethical conversions of the political kind but who knows Sri Lankans have no scruples

  18. Marco Says:

    I meant- Sri Lankan politicians have no scruples.

  19. Ananda-USA Says:

    Lorenzo,

    Don’t confuse the issue and shift your stand by dragging Voters into the discussion.

    In comparing QUANTITY Vs QUALITY, I was CLEARLY NOT referring to the Voters, but to the Commentators here at LankaWeb, in response to your comparison not of Voters but of Commentators!

  20. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    DOUGLAS ! Fully agree with you. MR must postpone the Election and run his balance period of two years.

    Then all this, huffing and puffing would be a damp squib, for the next two years.

  21. Ananda-USA Says:

    douglas,

    Your proposal for delaying the election would have made sense under normal conditions where the forces that brought Sri Lanka to its knees in the past are not again gearing up to repeat the disaster. We have a SMALL TIME WINDOW to REVERSE the impact of all debacles that befell Sri Lanka during the Eelam conflict, and make Sri Lanka IMPREGNABLE to its enemies. We cannot, we must not, and we shall not change the PROVEN HORSE in MIDSTREAM now!

    Today we simply cannot take the RISK of REVIVAL of the ANARCHY that bedevilled Sri Lanka in the last 30 years, denying the people of the nation the political stability and economic growth they deserve and need to thrive and prosper.

    I have NO DOUBT that if the MR/UPFA Govt falls (there is NO FEAR of that happening though), there is NO OTHER LEADERS in the Opposition Leadership who can be TRUSTED to maintain the sovereignty, territorial integrity, and the development drive that is now transforming Sri Lanka, and Sri Lanka would again become a basket case where no one can live.

    Those who argue vociferously against MR and the UPFA Govt, and are in effect calling for REGIME CHANGE, are CLEARLY not living in Sri Lanka, or do not have loved ones living in Sri Lanka, so that they don’t care if Sri Lanka is converted into another anarchic Somalia, Lybia, Syria or Iraq -like state.

    People of EVERY COMMUNITY in Sri Lanka now have a safe and secure place to live in Sri Lanka because of the security, economic and development policies carried out by this government. Their lives are being RAPIDLY transformed for the better because of the development undertaken by this government. I saw that first hand, especially by speaking to many Tamils in the North and visiting their homes; there will be a lot of individual Northern Tamils voting for MR in the upcoming election, notwithstanding the naysayers of the TNA.

  22. Marco Says:

    Ananda
    Think you had a “enzo” moment!
    I understood what you meant.

  23. Lorenzo Says:

    Ananda,

    Lets agree to disagree.

    I don’t for a moment think some commentators are “MORE EQUAL” than the others. I believe all men. women, etc. are born equal and hence equal in every individual right.

    So there are no BETTER QUALITY commentators and LESSER QUALITY commentators. One man, one vote.

  24. Lorenzo Says:

    “Sri Lankans have no scruples”

    What an anti-SL racist statement only the LTTE would make!!

    I would say Tamil homeland believers have no scruples.

  25. Lorenzo Says:

    SW,

    NO!

    MR is getting unpopular by the month. If he postpones it by 2 years, he will be so unpopular that he will not have ANY chance of re-election.

    Now he has a 55% chance to get re-elected.

    ALL presidential elections except 1994 and 2005 were held IN ADVANCE. Especially the ones where the CURRENT PRESIDENT won.

    e.g. JR in 1982 not 1984.
    e.g. CBK in 1999 not 2000.
    e.g. MR in 2010 not 2011.

  26. Nanda Says:

    “Your proposal for delaying the election would have made sense under normal conditions where the forces that brought Sri Lanka to its knees in the past are not again gearing up to repeat the disaster. We have a SMALL TIME WINDOW to REVERSE the impact of all debacles that befell Sri Lanka during the Eelam conflict, and make Sri Lanka IMPREGNABLE to its enemies. We cannot, we must not, and we shall not change the PROVEN HORSE in MIDSTREAM now!”

    Those who argue vociferously against MR and the UPFA Govt, and are in effect calling for REGIME CHANGE, are CLEARLY not living in Sri Lanka, or do not have loved ones living in Sri Lanka, so that they don’t care if Sri Lanka is converted into another anarchic Somalia, Lybia, Syria or Iraq -like state.

    – sounds exactly like MR. Wonder whether paid by MR. This is an insult to Lankaweb readers who are not the “voters of Sri Lanka”, who have been fooled for 50 years by greedy politicians.

    Douglas,

    Your proposal is 100% valid. But it was rejected by MR already (as given above). We have heard this monotonous mantra before. We need ideas from impartial people for the discussion. This is not an election platform and we have some brains left.

    Astrologer is the God for the greedy old fashioned FOOLS. Just imagine, our whole country has been kidnapped by Astrologers now., in addition to drug barons and murderers.

  27. Nanda Says:

    Susantha,

    Whatever we argue here, we are only observers.

    With the help of JHU and BBS MR can get 51%. Without their help MR WILL LOOSE but we can’t say Ruinill will win because we do not know who are the other candidates, even Ruinill may not even run.

    There is not party called UPFA. As Dilook said, Sinhala Buddhist parties ( not SLFP) will be the king makers.

    Game is not over. But the irony is winner may not be Helaya.

  28. Wickrama Says:

    Lorenzo,
    “There is NO ONE to replace MR among the challengers.
    ………………….
    BUT should we just say THERE IS NO ONE BUT MR and continue with his disasters? No way.”

    So what can anybody do? If a suitable person do not come forward, and all those who have come forward are WORSE than MR, the only way is to let MR carry on. Whether for 2 years or for 6 years, it doesn’t make much difference, but with 6 years, MR at least have a chance to correct his mistakes. If he doesn’t, that will be the end of Rajapakses !!

  29. Lorenzo Says:

    Wickrama,

    Agree.

    BUT not by default. At a price.

    My wish is for MR to WIN AFTER giving into patriotic demands. IF he doesn’t, let Run-nil win. As you say if Run-nil wins, “that will be the end of Rajapakses !!” and they KNOW that.

    So what happens is MR WILL listen to partriots and try to give as many things they demand. This is where we want to arrive at.

    e.g. In 2006 NASA sent a satellite to orbit the sun vertically. But you cannot do it directly. You send the satellite towards JUPITER (oppositte direction!). There is a point the NET gravity of the sun and jupiter becomes equal and oppositte. At that point you orbit it the way you want.

    We have to GRAB the bull by its horns and CORRECT him.

  30. Lorenzo Says:

    Nanda,

    Have you watched KUNG FU PANDA?

    How does the MASTER teaches him kung fu?

    He notices the FAT panda is GREEDY. So he uses FOOD (what attracts him) to TRAIN him.

    Same thing for MR. MR, BR, GR, AR-ZR are GREEDY for power. So we put a PRICE to get it. You want power, give us this and that BEFORE the election. Otherwise go to hell.

  31. Ananda-USA Says:

    Lorenzo,

    “I believe all men. women, etc. are born equal and hence equal in every individual right.”

    A VERY NOBLE and LAUDABLE ideal no doubt, my friend, but as practical men living in a real world we all know that though “born equal” man “lies bound in chains everywhere.”

    Furthermore, as practical people living in a real world, we know that the Eelamist Diaspora, the Western Neocolonialists, and our very own Sri Lankan politicos flood blogs with their propagandists to serve their interests hidden beneath sheepskins.

    Therefore, your high-minded ideal of believing that every commentor has no hidden agenda and an ulterior motive is being very NAIVE, to say the least.

    But, strangely, that is QUITE CONTRARY to your normal astute behaviour.

    Which makes me believe that you, must be feeling somewhat ill today! So please go and eat some anchovies … or better still sprats badun … to firm up the old gray cells a bit to normal status.

  32. Nanda Says:

    Lorenzo,

    OK. I will watch it.

    My fear is these Pandas( not sure of GR yet, he and his wife seems to be different – no flamboyancy, simple I still respect him probably foolishly) will EAT THE FOOD and will not hesitate to attack the MASTER. These buggers have no moral shame and moral fear, judging from their actions lately. They will do any criminal action total disregard to all norms.

  33. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    NANDA ! No, we are not arguing, we are just deliberating. We are throwing our two cents worth only. Long years back there was a saying that the Politicians are always the Players. The rest are Spectators. That is right, we are only Observers.

    I still stand by my point of view, vis-à-vis ” that there is NOBODY on the Horizon, yet seen, who has the Experience, the Knowledge, the Political acumen, the International clout, the Fearlessness to be formidable at crucial moments, the grit to sit at the wheel of Governance, and steer Sri Lanka to Prosperity. Not one anywhere close by. GR, has to be groomed for the seat. There is a long time for him to gain more experience. He is doing an excellent job right now, inspite of the brick-bats being thrown, through sheer jealously.

    Lorenzo ! Yes, two years is a long time to envisage the outcome of an Election, considering the present heat.
    By the way, there is terrorist mentality here, like trying to break the Country into TWO, attempting to create Better Quality Commentators, and Lesser Quality Commentators. Inferior Sick Mentality. Appreciate you nipping it at the BUD.

  34. Nanda Says:

    Who gave this name ” Diaspora” to LTTE ? It does not suit terrorists. Foolish MR also uses this name together with brainless pandamaas.

    These terrorist were already beaten very badly by our brave soldiers and Hela people who gave all the support.
    Now the threat has been created by the government, headed by MR for their own benefit.

    New beggar’s wound is the stupid mantra “Tamil Diaspora, Western Enemies, Indian Enemies , UNP, TNA etc etc”.

    There is absolutely no threat if there is a resolute government with all its people behind it.

  35. Nanda Says:

    Susantha,

    “I still stand by my point of view, vis-à-vis ” that there is NOBODY on the Horizon, yet seen”

    Ratana Hamuduruwo recently said ” Finishing the war is not SLFP agenda, it was JHU agenda”
    Champika said at the same time “SLFP did not have any “Chinthanaya” we created the “Chintanaya”.

    No one dare to challenge these words, yet.
    What we in the horizon is what we see in the popular media, when we watch without being alert. There are unsung heors whose efforts have been hijacked by a group of thugs.

  36. Lorenzo Says:

    Ananda,

    Yumm “sprats” badun with “shark” kulambu curry and kade paan!

  37. Lorenzo Says:

    SW,

    Reminds be the “we Thamiz” and you “chena boys” mentality that was BEATEN during the war. Ultimately the “we Thamiz” came with white flags to the FEET of “chena boys” creeping through excreta filled trenches! Too bad Thalaivar dropped his head on a grenede thrown by his OWN fools blasting part of it! Then Balachandran screamed “appah” and jumped in landing belly up on another live grenede.

  38. Nanda Says:

    Wickrama,

    Sorry did not see your question early.

    “Can you please explain HOW we are getting back “1 million ONLY””

    – the last recorded annual earnings was Rs. 0.975 billion. how could I explain it more? Not sure if the government getting this amount back in full.

    It seems we are loosing money big time.

    A leading strategist in transport and logistics management revealed that the much-celebrated Southern Expressway (E01) is currently incurring a whopping Rs 5.5 billion loss annually, raising concerns over the cost-effectiveness of such hyped highways.

    The annual revenue collected from vehicles using the Expressway is approximately Rs 1 billion, whereas the maintenance and debt service cost is around Rs 6.5 billion,” said Prof. Amal S. Kumarage of the Transport and Logistics Management Department of the University of Moratuwa.

    The Colombo-Galle section of the Colombo-Matara Expressway, which is now open to the public, is estimated to have cost US$ 742 million. Prof. Kumarage, who was the former Chairman of the National Transport Commission, was speaking at the 46th LBR-LBO Chief Executive Officers’ forum at Galle Face Hotel, Colombo. He said due to the dilapidated condition of the public transport, the use of private transport would further increase in the future, exacerbating the traffic congestion.

    Citing statistics, he projected the average speed of the vehicular traffic in the City of Colombo would come down to 17.4 km per hour by 2021, from the current speed of 21.6 km, due to the dilapidated public transport sector, which would encourage the public to use private transportation. He added the vehicular speed would further come down to 9.1 km by 2031, should the current trend continues.

    He forecast the share of bus transport, which amounts to 55% at present, would drop to 41% by 2021 and the railway transport would remain at the same level at 5%, and privately-owned transport would rise from 26% at present to 38% in 2021.

    He maintained the quality of buses today remain the same as in the 50s and train services have showed a degree of improvement since the early 80s. “Both quality and quantity should be maintained at a steady rate,” he noted.

    “We need to do something radically different to make public transport more appealing to the public. Our country can improve the transport system by bringing in new services like the rapid transport metros, which would take some time to put in place,” he said.

    “Sri Lanka had the best transport system in Asia after Japan in the 50s, but it had a steady decline since then,” he said. He suggested the private sector be encouraged to engage in road building.

  39. Dilrook Says:

    What I noticed from the statements, conduct and priorities of government officials, MPs and ministers who I personally met is the terror (which cannot be simple fear) of war crimes of the ruling clan. Although they project to the public to be in control, they caved into all war crimes allegations and racist Tamil demands that piggyback on these allegations. Ultimately we have given political concessions to TNA and Tamils including a provincial council, demilitarised the north, prevented Sinhalese and Muslims from resettling in the north, wasted billions on reconciliation instead of development, borrowed more to finance reconciliation blunders and allowed “friendly countries” that voted for us at the UNHRC to manipulate us causing a new problem of Islamic extremism.

    We need a leader who is not afraid of war crimes allegations and who doesn’t appease Tamils and Middle East regimes over these allegations. Reconciliation is about displaying army victory marches for the consumption of the Sinhalese while showering all economic benefits on the north and the east where Sinhalese are a very small minority. Basil Rajapaksa had the audacity to publicly claim over 90% of (borrowed) development funds went to the north and the east while the entire nation has to service the debt.

    Unfortunately the Rajapaksa clan (including the very capable defence secretary) is not the leaders for that purpose unless they realize the danger they have put the country through to save their skin and take bold measures to uphold national interests. One wonders where all this appeasement would lead us to if it continues for another seven years.

    The ruling clan must realise that if they lose the election, each and every senior of the clan is likely to end up in the Hague. It must decide quickly what is the voters’ segment that matters and serve it adequately.

    The choices are not two. If none of the candidates is worthy of the vote of the people, they should not vote for any. This was what Venerable Soma Thero appealed in 1999 but voters disregarded it as sympathy overtook sanity. As much as Ranil supported division of the country, Basil pledged to fully implement 13A in 2008. The very large number of Rajapaksa relatives in Foreign Service ruined it as never before at a time when we need it most.

    The third term is about ushering in Basil as the next president; who is not a nationalist at all. According to Wikileaks revelations Basil blamed the STF for the killing of 5 young terrorists in Trincomalee in 2006 at a meeting with Robert Blake which puts him in the same league as Ranil. Basil also gave an assurance to an Indian delegate to accept LTTE terrorists in a surrender he discussed at diplomatic level contrary to practice which is to negotiate at the military level. As an American permanent resident, he should not even be in parliament.

    However, if the president realises his blunders and corrects them, he has the golden opportunity to change the constitution which is a dire need.

  40. Dilrook Says:

    Nanda:

    Direct comparison of income and expenses for the SEW is not accurate. Then waht about free roads like the A9? They produce no income to the government at all and given the distance cost much more.

    Infrastructure adds to the national economy which is not a direct income of the government. The indirect economic contribution of the SEW may run into a few billion rupees a year. The saving of time, fuel (congestion burns fuel), increase in productivity and opening up of new businesses as a result also contribute to the economy.

  41. Nanda Says:

    Dilrook,
    Agreed.
    I have used this road. To me surely it is under utilised to bring due benefits. You can clearly see, as a regular user of e’ways in other countries.
    General public, unless they have a car or are able to pay for luxury busses, cannot use this road.

    The other problem is the construction cost was too high to begin with.

  42. Nanda Says:

    I brought up the southern E’way issue to show that building roads alone is not sufficient.
    For roads to bring economic benefits transport methods and means should also be improved.
    Look at the bus travel in Colombo and suburbs. The quality have gone down. Government has done nothing to improve it. Productivity of people thus have gone down.
    Airport is the worst example. 2 plane per day ! What kind of rubbish development is that.
    Anyone can take loans and build new beautiful houses. But will go bankrupt if unable to pay the loan.

  43. SA Kumar Says:

    Too bad Thalaivar dropped his head on a grenede thrown by his OWN fools blasting part of it! Then Balachandran screamed “appah” and jumped in landing belly up on another live grenede !

    How VP & Balachandran dead?

  44. SA Kumar Says:

    Lorenzo
    where is VP wife& daughter ? Living in Scandinavian country !

  45. Lorenzo Says:

    UPFA-JHU talks collapse. MR hunting down Ranawaka!

    MR and Pavithra the new energy minister claim a 1.5 BILLION FRAUD during Ranawaka’s time in buying coal!

    This is not good. Now the JHU will be on war path against MR. Ratana thero has met Sobitha and agreed to contest together.

    MR thinks JHU is TOO SMALL to make an impact on his chances. But if it joins with others JHU can defeat MR by DIVIDING the vote.

  46. Wickrama Says:

    Nanda, thanks for answering the Q, and
    Dilrook, thanks for the response, which would have been mine too.
    Nanda, obviously, any new E’way cannot be expected to be fully utilised in a short time. In a few years time, you may be complaining that there are too much traffic in the SEW, just like what is happening in the some motorways in western countries !
    Comparing house building and road building is bordering on the absurd. Houses are for personal use, whereas roads are for public use. Usually houses are more or less fully utilised from the beginning unlike the roads.

  47. Lorenzo Says:

    ELECTION BUDGET for cheap popularity!!

    Tax reduced!
    Pension to garment workers!
    Water bill reduced! People will WASTE water now.
    $100 to enter a casino!
    Paddy purchase price increased from 34 to 40! Rice prices will go up.
    2 billion rupees to rehabilitate tanks! Why now?
    3,000 rupees monthly allowance to kidney patients! Why now?
    150 more buses imported!
    Mobile medical clinics! Why waited until now?

    These FOOLISH election tactics will cost BILLIONS which people will pay.

    Now everyone will know MR is DESPERATE. But cost of living going up. Now all the trade unions and buses will go on strike begging a 10,000 rupee salary increase.

    UNP will match these with promises.

  48. Lorenzo Says:

    Even more election nonsense in the budget. This budget is ELECTION PROPAGANDA AND MISUSING STATE RESOURCES FOR ELECTION!

    “Pre-school teachers to be provided with a monthly allowance of Rs 2,500.

    The guaranteed price for local fresh milk to be increased to Rs 60 per litre while the price of locally manufactured milk powder is to be reduced by Rs 100 per kilogram.

    Locally-made yoghurt to be reduced by Rs 3.

    The number of Grade 5 Scholarship students to be increased from 15,000 to 25,000 while their monthly allowance will be increased from Rs 500 to Rs 1,500.

    Samurdhi benefits to be increased to Rs 3,000 for 4-memeber families and Rs 2,000 for 3-member families.

    Government to introduce pensions scheme for Sri Lankan nationals employed abroad.

    Infant formula to be sold through Sathosa outlets at a subsidized price while the President requested other supermarket outlets to also provide subsidies for infant formula.

    President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Budget reading said that dual citizenship will be granted for foreign employees.

    Government to introduce pension scheme and insurance for three-wheeler drivers.

    All disable persons to receive Rs 3,000 monthly grant while the monthly allowance provided to Senior Citizens is to be increased up to Rs 2,000 per month. July Strikers’ allowance increased by Rs 1,000.

    The monthly allowance of Rs 750 provided to the parents of tri-forces personnel increased to Rs 1,000 and also extended to the parents of police officers.

    50,000 students who don’t gain enough marks to enter universities will be given jobs in government sector after a special training.

    Cost of living allowance for government sector employees to be increased by Rs. 2,500.

    Motorcycles will be given for police Constables.

    Pension and life insurance to be introduced for trishaw drivers”

    – adaderana.com

  49. Christie Says:

    How much we depend on analysis by Europeans and Indians. Deutsche Welled and International Crisis Group are not friends of the Sinhalese. There are very rich Indians that include Tamils and Indian colonial parasites in Germany. There is one who is probably a billionaire in the container shipping industry. Most of the import export trade is in the hands Indian colonial parasites. Please don’t be mislead by these who get money from Indians. ICG, HRW and AI get a lot of money from Indians.

  50. Wickrama Says:

    Now, now, now, Lorenzo, don’t go berserk with all negative sides of the budget.
    “Water bill reduced! People will WASTE water now.”

    “Paddy purchase price increased from 34 to 40! Rice prices will go up.”
    So that should be a good decision? People will eat less rice, be more healthy?

    If you criticise reducing the price of water bill saying people will waste water, then increasing the prices of water and other commodities should be a good thing because then people will conserve them ! Have you ever supported any such price increase in the past?

    “Why now?”

    If the govt cannot give any relief to public even near an election, when do you expect it?

  51. Marco Says:

    If Lankaweb would permit me to copy and paste a thought provoking article by Kusal Perera

    “There are people who now say, I cannot contest for the third time. They say it at different places. But why bother? It’s the people who decide. Let the people decide that. Otherwise they can go to Courts.”

    President Rajapaksa was quoted so, at a meeting of health sector employees called to Temple Trees a week or so ago. The Court that he says the people can go to is not that in Bengaluru which delivered a verdict on TN CM Jeyalalithaa. The Court he says the people could go to is next to “Saanchi Arachchie Watte”. That’s where political stooges ruined the system. Over the past decade or two, nefarious men and women with personal greed for power and position, ruled the nest at Hultsdorp, went into deals with the ruling head and had ditched the same too. Also on deals, with the next in line. To this Court Rajapaksa says, anyone can go for a ruling.

    This country, to be precise the part of the country politically called the “Sinhala South”, lives to accept Sinners from high posts as heroes and heroines. Sinners that in any decent and civilised society would have been indicted for saying, “Pardon me. I did a wrong. If not for me, he would have even been in prison”. A public acceptance, a ruling was knowingly and intentionally given that went against the people. Given on the strength of the position held that goes unquestioned. It’s plain abuse of a powerful position, against the people. Yet the Sinhala South is there to applaud him and treat him as a hero. The Sinhala Opposition is naive and frustrated. It is opportunistic too. It provides red carpets to these Sinners to have their dirty linen laundered publicly and with admiration. Here is a Sinhala Buddhist society any sinner, any dirty crook could swap characters overnight and move on as heroes by simply opposing the Rajapaksa regime.
    The JVP does it, after installing the Rajapaksa regime and defending it right through war. It defended the Rajapaksa regime as patriotic and venomously labelled everyone who opposed the Rajapaksa regime as “traitors, LTTE informants” or as “NGO dollar crows”. For the JVP, there was no crime committed, no democracy curbed, for it was a necessary “humanitarian” war that was waged to eliminate “Eelam terrorists”. What then is wrong with this regime for the JVP to oppose it now? Only thing wrong in this regime for the JVP is that a single family takes home the whole booty.

    On the same path, now comes a Buddhist monk, Athuraliye Rathana leading the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) to the laundry. How clean is the JHU and what moral right has it to accuse the Rajapaksa regime for omissions, misrule and corruption? The JHU was a whole hearted campaign partner of “patriotic and Sinhala nationalist” leader, Mahinda Rajapaksa at the 2005 November presidential elections. Thereafter they sat in support of everything done by President Rajapaksa’s government. From January 2007, the JHU officially joined the government and Champika Ranawaka since then is a Cabinet Minister (he manipulated to have himself appointed to parliament from the National List, for which Omalpe Sobhitha thero had to resign). This Minister Ranawaka, thereafter came out as the strongest advocate for a brutal war and against minorities. In late February 2007 he said, if law cannot remove extremism, then there has to be other means. “We know about Ravaya and we know what Ravaya is up to. We know that Ravaya sheds tears when Tamils (using a very derogatory Sinhala term) get killed. This is the same thing done by the bunch of so called Leftists. Nothing can be done because of the wild ass freedom in this country.” He was quoted almost verbatim.

    This was JHU thinking and their conviction. It is, even now. Their interpretation of “democracy” is one for the Sinhala Buddhist majority only and not for other “wild asses”. Their form of “democracy” would allow any brutal attack on any minority community and would justify such attacks with unbelievable fictional stories spun as facts. They came out with such fabrications, post Aluthgama-Beruwala anti Muslim riots in June (2014). During these 07 years and even before, they were comfortable with all shady and corrupt deals the Rajapaksas are accused of. They sat through consenting to eccentric projects like the 11 bn rupee 1,150 ft tall Colombo Lotus Tower claimed as Asia’s tallest tower, with a garden at the highest elevation. Was pressing to curb all powers given to PCs and agrees without hesitation in having the military deployed in the North and justifies all its repressive activities.

    They are still part of this Rajapaksa regime that is held responsible for an extremely politicized and corrupt police department, a politicized and inefficient judiciary and therefore breakdown in law and order. Can Rathana or Champika claim they are not responsible for this rising wave of crimes in the past 07 to 08 years ? Can a silly 12 point demand list put forward by Rathana thero that does not propose answers to the major issues the country is facing, wipe them clean? Their 12 point programme accepts the North and the East to be what they are under military rule.

    In a stupid effort to defend themselves, Rathana in an interview with Lankadeepa newspaper (23 October) says they could not see far enough on the 17 Amendment and therefore agreed to its abolition. On the day he launched his “Pivithuru Hetak” he said they voted for the 18 Amendment, but now feel it was wrong. Can political duds who had no idea what they did on very serious issues that were politically fatal to the country, be taken seriously ? Can such irresponsible men come up with a list of fair and just solutions ? They retain their extreme racist veneer in everything they say and do not meet the present challenge of redefining the future of this country to move forward as a decent, civilized country.

    Therefore the most important question is, “what is a broad alliance for that is talked of with much fancy and as necessary to defeat Rajapaksa ?” Here in Sinhala South, a broad alliance, a “party front” is talked of as bringing together a “big list” of men and women who claim they are leaders. This old fashioned front today can bring together dozens of such individuals on a political stage who will only criticise the Rajapaksa regime, but cannot offer a comprehensive programme that would provide answers to what the people now need. On electoral politics, these loud voices cannot collect votes either.

    In a national election like the presidential polls, the indication now is, people don’t vote to see their “x” go waste. Uva PC elections proved the shift has begun without any opposition alliance. The trend now is to gather in the two main camps. That was why Fonseka’s party which polled 06% in the South got wiped out completely in Uva. Why the JVP that polled over 09% in the South, was reduced to a mere 05.3% in Uva. In a presidential poll, these opposition groups will shrink more.

    Already an exodus of 23% in Moneragala district was seen leaving the Rajapaksas at the Uva PC elections. Even in a provincial election that usually gives the ruling party an edge, an advantage in mobilising voters, it was a massive departure of 21% in the whole province that has a 84% Sinhala population. Without any political alliance, without the UNP offering an alternate programme, in Uva, 19% of the people who left the Rajapaksa camp, encamped with the UNP. This trend does not necessitate any compromises, any gathering for any “front” against the Rajapaksa. It only needs an attractive and a viable programme the large numbers who leave the Rajapaksa fold would want for their future.

    It is therefore important to read the emerging Sinhala South that has changed priorities, 05 years after the war was concluded. The Sinhala South has been pushed into an insecure, uncertain life under this Sinhala Buddhist dominance in governance. In Sinhala rural society (11 of the districts have over 85% Sinhala people), local political power had been transferred to thugs and criminals who are now Pradeshiya Sabha or Urban Council Chairmen and Vice Chairmen. They are local “Al Capones” who sit over people’s daily life. It is their feeling of insecurity where education has little hope in giving their children a decent and a secure future. A feeling of insecurity having got to live with increasing molestations and sexual abuse of children, increasing trend in sexual harassment, rape and murder of women, wide spread and almost open peddling of drugs in villages, custodial killings, extortions and brutal killings along with a police department that has lost social trust, that has changed priorities from voting a Sinhala Buddhist leader.

    Getting out of such brutality that haunts their daily life, is now high priority for them. Even above the “cost of living” that keeps biting into their meagre incomes. Obviously, life is dear and more important than holding onto a Sinhala Buddhist regime. One that does not take notice of ordinary life in the village. Uva will not be an exclusion from the ordinary. Today, the ordinary is Uva. But that large protest has to have answers. Answers to get back to a decent civilised life. Compromises with Sinhala Buddhist extremism will not provide answers to these frustrated Sinhala Buddhist voters. UNP will have to address the nagging social insecurity instead, if they want to outflank this “Mahinda and the Monk” combination, publicly and rhetorically opposed to each other, but not so in real politics.

  52. Marco Says:

    Christie,
    I do chuckle every time you comment. with no disrespect i may add but the Indian Colonial Parasite (herein known as ICP) mantra is getting rather tiresome when you need to examine your own roots. I have no doubt that you been called an Indian or Paki in the country you reside in.
    Interestingly you brought up the name Alan Keenan from the article above. If Lankaweb readers were well informed you would have found out that Alan Keenan was one of the promoters of the “Killing Fields” video in Geneva 2011 and provided a detail analysis of the LTTE engaging in ethnic cleansing in the late 1990.
    I had the opportunity of meeting him, Rama Mani (before she got her marching orders),Charu Latha Hogg, Bradman Weerakoon, Rajiva Wijesinghe and a host others at the Neelan Tiruchelvam Memorial Lecture.
    I found him to be a very astute,well informed, diplomatic and has had vast experience of Sri Lankan domestic affairs. (over 20 years i believe). Equally, i found him arrogant and unfathomable.
    If ever there was to be an expert witness on war crime charges on both sides, he would be one.

  53. Lorenzo Says:

    Complete rubbish article by Kusal Perera. He is trying to apply the TAMILS’ GENOCIDE, etc. model! If he is right Tamils must be TOTALLY GENOCIDE in SL by now.

    FAT JAYA was not sent to prison for corruption (alone). She was punished because she is a TAMIL RACIST like Viggie, Samabandan, Sumanthiran, etc. ALL other Endian CMs are corrupt but pose NO THREAT to Endia.

  54. Lorenzo Says:

    Wickrama,

    Doesn’t that tell the people if MR wins again, they will get NOTHING for 5 years?

    Some scraps will be throw at the near the FOLLOWING election.

  55. Marco Says:

    Further to the comment by Dilrook,
    What were the political concessions given to the Northern voters? Are you saying that the Northern voters and electorate cannot enjoy democratic principles as the same in the rest of the country. It’s no different to the PC elections held recently.
    Nobody is denying the resettlement of Sinhala,Muslim and Tamil families in the North and Eastern province. The resettlement should be on a fair and equitable basis but not forced purposely to change the demographics.

    The up shot of your argument being (rather shot sighted) why spend enormous resources on people (citizens) that will not benefit the rest of the majority or voters. If that is indeed your argument why not this section of the people manage their own affairs? Perish the thought you would say.
    They are all citizens of Sri Lanka.

    Further you mention that Basil Rajapakse had the audacity to publicly claim over 90% of (borrowed) development funds went to the north and the east while the entire nation has to service the debt. Please provide the source.
    I doubt very much he was daft enough to make such a statement, although i noticed you fell hook line and sinker and keep repeating the same knowing its not the truth, which further questions your credibility and information.

    With regards to the Trinco 5, do you have information that the 5 youths were LTTE terrorists? or it it just te case that they were Tamils and hence terrorist?
    Please provide evidence that Basil pledged to fully implement the 13A in 2008? If you are referring to “closed” communiques who i wonder would have authorised him to provide that pledge?
    I don’t need to remind you that MR has never mentioned that he would not implement the 13 but even gone so far as introducing 13++

    Finally,
    Your last sentence which may come back to haunt you at a later stage.
    “As an American permanent resident, he should not even be in parliament” Ouch!

  56. Marco Says:

    Wickrama
    I assure you Lankaweb will be dull without the insightful and astute comments such as..

    “Water bill reduced! People will WASTE water now.”

    Classic!!

  57. Lorenzo Says:

    Micro,

    How about comments like this which you made a day ago?

    “Sri Lankans have no scruples”

    Reminds me MR’s quote of people in glasshouses throwing stones!

  58. Nanda Says:

    Wickrama,
    Southern E’way is a white elephant, bought at a inflated price by pocketing public money.

    ” just like what is happening in the some motorways in western countries !” – Just name one e’way in western country.

    No way. In those countries toll road investments are mostly private, sometimes with some partnership with the government. Loosing money is possible but not by 1:5 ratio.IF that happened in those countries , there will be a big legal case !
    There should be feasibility studies to evaluate economic benefits and proper tender procedure and supervision. What happened in this case ? Bridges collapsed before use, remember ?.
    Even if we had that ratio , will it bring economic benefits of that scale in near future, if managed this way ?

  59. Wickrama Says:

    Nanda,

    You asked;

    “” just like what is happening in the some motorways in western countries !” – Just name one e’way in western country.”

    what I said was;

    “In a few years time, you may be complaining that there are too much traffic in the SEW, just like what is happening in the some motorways in western countries !”

    So you want to see traffic in motorways of western countries?
    Check this out;

    https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=MOTORWAY+TRAFFIC+JAMS&biw=1156&bih=516&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=uEJLVLqpIKPn7gbKzoGIDA&ved=0CEkQsAQ

  60. Marco Says:

    Many would have read the barring of “Foreigners” buying land in Sri Lanka by the enactment Land (Restrictions on Alienation) Bill that was passed earlier this month.
    Forgetting the fact that Sri Lanka is struggling to get any impressive increase in FDI, post-war, the only notable increase in FDI has come in the property sector, this bill is ill thought out, lack of research and loop holes galore.
    In all intensive purposes the definition “Foreigners ” is people of no connection what so ever to Sri Lanka. I will elaborate further.

    The essence of the Bill (which has been in the sidelines since 2012) is to bar foreigners owning land directly or via nominee or via shareholding in SL companies. In the past there has been a 100% transfer tax. Now there is a complete bar.
    So who are these foreigners?
    There are exceptions to Diplomatic missions,International, Multilateral, Bilateral organisations etc.
    Interestingly it allows anyone to acquire and transfer exemption.
    1)Condominium parcels situation on or above the 4th floor
    2)Transfers/sales to next of kin who are foreigners
    3)Lifetime gifts/inheritance to foreigners
    4)Land acquired by dual citizens
    5)This is a classic! Land purchase by foreigners based on complete discretion by certain subject Ministers and the Cabinet.

    I will revert to (5) above.

    Since this Bill was passed i have been inundated by “spam” emails/newsletters /advice by tax specialist/wealth management specialist from reputable firms of accountants and private banking/wealth management specialist highlighting loop holes and the avoidance of 100% transfer tax that has been in place the past 2 years.
    This applies i may add only to people who have a connection and/or kith and kin in Sri Lanka

    The (5)th scenario i mentioned above is a money earner for our deprived and hard working Ministers.
    The Act provides for a fair amount of discretion by politicians and government officials as to which land acquisition can gain exemption from the Act, because the provision for such discretion is expressly written out in the Act. I repeat EXPRESSLY WRITTEN OUT.
    I believe that allowing for so much discretion is at the heart of what economists call ‘rent-seeking’ (i.e., corruption/unofficial payments/graft/campaign contributions etc)
    There is going to be a booming Property/Real Estate brokering sector aligned to our Ministerial duties.

  61. SA Kumar Says:

    don’t need to remind you that MR has never mentioned that he would not implement the 13 but even gone so far as introducing 13++
    Marco you are 100% correct
    .
    13 plus mean 13 + 1 or 2 so it means he will implement fully 13A and give more power not include in 13A !

    MR & all our future head of state knows very well they can fool you & me forever but not Indian (Modi)!

    NP Election is begining of implementing 13A it will take 25 or more years to implement ……during is time one can expect 2 step front one step back,5 step front three step back and so on…..

    United Mother Lanka for ever !!!

  62. callistus Says:

    මේ නන්දාවතී මංගලගේ පච හමුදාවෙ එක්කෙනෙක්නෙ. එයාට ඔය එක කොමෙන්ට් එකකට ඩයස්පෝරාවෙන් මංගල හරහා ඩොලර් 20ක් ලැබෙනවලු කියල මං ඇහුව.එයාට පේන්නෙ ජනාදිපති තුමාගෙ ඇදමයි. මෙතුමිය/මෙතුමා මේ කොමෙන්ටිං පටන් ගත්තෙ අර පච බලකාය හැදුවට පස්සෙ 2013 දෙසැම්බර් වලට පස්සෙ. අනික මෙයා කොමෙන්ට් එක පිට එක හතරක් පහක් දානව එකම ලිපිය යට. මාර ගානක් හම්බ කරනව එක ලිපියකින්. දැං ඔබතුමාට තේරෙනව ඇතිනේ. මෙවුන්ට හොඳ පේන්නෙම නැහැ.

  63. Christie Says:

    Dear Marco, I very much appreciate your attention. The British-Indian Empire is the first Empire that two groups of people together built an Empire. British (English, Scots. Welsh, and Irish made the British. Then British with slaves from Africa built the second British Empire in North America. Here I see African slaves as part and parcel of the British. Then came the British -Indian Empire that was built by the Indians and the British. It is interesting to note British did not take Indian partners to countries with a climate like that of the British, examples Falklands, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. But they took their Colonial partner the Indians to tropical countries like Ceylon, Malaya. West Indies, Mauritius, South Africa, Kenya, Uganda, Fiji to name a few. The Indians are really parasites who had a ride on the British Imperialists. Like in Nature these parasites extracted the wealth and gave a bit to the British. They are doing it today and you just have to look at the businesses and the economy of theses countries.
    You say we all in Ceylon fall in to that category that is Indian colonial parasites. The history of Ceylon go far beyond 2600 years. Like in most islander nations close to Continents from time to time some people came from nations of the continent and settled with the natives of the island. Best example are the British isles. Ceylon had people of different nations from the Indian subcontinent arriving in Ceylon and settling with the locals. That is how the Sinhalese evolved. Those days the locals were not wiped out by the new comers like in the North America (USA and Canada) and Australia.

    We need to understand what has happened to us and others similar to us.

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