Why Should You Vote for Mahinda Rajapaksa for Presidency of Sri Lanka?
Posted on January 5th, 2015

By Prof. Shantha Hennayake Department of Geography, University of Peradeniya

As a responsible citizen of this nation I consider it is my duty to tell the nation why should the people of this nation vote for Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa at the forthcoming presidential election.  The current debates on who should become next president is mulled with negativism, personal allegations, hatred and anger, personal frustrations, lies and exaggerations and finally false and deceitful promises.     I believe we need to raise the debate to a positive plane so that the voter can take a decision on merits, accomplishments and the contribution to the nation.

The voters are fortunate as they have the opportunity to compare and contrast the track record of Mahinda Rajapaksa and the opposition candidate supported by a former President and a Prime Minister both of who have failed the nation.

Let me start with the trust and loyalty – an essential quality of a leader.  Here, Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa rise above the opposition candidate and vast majority of his key supporters.  Take for example, the opposition candidate himself.  He is the ultimate betrayer.  Being the General Secretary of the SLFP from which the Mr. MahindaRajapaksa, the incumbent President is running for the election, he should be one of the most active and strong supporters and yet he not only betrayed the party but made a mockery of himself by offering to run against his own party.  This is not only bad and poor judgment, but a political suicide.  Just imagine if this is his judgement now, what he will do if he ever become the President of this nation.  Then, Mrs. Chandrika Bandaranaike, two times President from SLFP is now supporting a candidate against SLFP.   This shows nothing but unprincipled and unethical politics of the highest order.  Less said about the others is better.   Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa, stood his ground with the SLFP and never betrayed it even when he was treated badly and humiliated by Mr. Chandrika Bandaranaike when she was the President.   This is the consistency we want from a leader and Mr. Rajapaksa brings this consistency as the candidate.

Second, take the most important issue of the post of Presidency.  Here a group of people, now led by the opposition candidate and his supporters who argue that the fundamental problem in Sri Lanka is the Presidential system”.  Nothing can be further from the truth, if we go by the ground realities.  The simple fact is that often in politics the problem is not the structure or the system per se, but the quality of the people who occupy the high positions in the structure.  For example, take the presidency itself.  We have had presidents who instead of fighting the LTTE, actually provided arms, ammunitions, vehicles and cash to them.  We have presidents, who want the people of this nation to address the ruthless LTTE leader as Mr. Prabhakaran.  We have had presidents who instead of steering the nation along the path of development, actually led the nation into negative growth.  We have had Prime Ministers who allowed high end transmissions equipment for the LTTE with the connivance of foreign embassies. Compared to them, Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa used his presidency to decisively defeat and eradicate LTTE terrorism from this land for ever.  He also used his presidency to steer the nation from a poor country into the middle income nation in the world.  

Those who are rallying around, the opposition candidate actually ridiculed and undermined the position of the presidency.  Some of them while holding the office of presidency ridiculed the presidential constitution as bahubootha’ constitution.  If so, then president too must be a bahuboothaya”.  We came very close to that once.  Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa, on the other hand, has elevated the presidency to a very high and respectable level of which the citizens of the country can be proud.   He has shown to the nation and to the world, the presidency is an effective office in dealing with both national calamities and crisis as well as international pressure and intimidation against the nation.   So what is at stake is not the presidential position, but the quality of the incumbent.

Third, and most important for the nation is the comprehensive defeat and eradication of the LTTE which was internationally defined as the most ruthless terrorist organization in the world.  The deaths and devastation caused by the LTTE in this nation for about three decades is all well known. Several thousand people were killed some cold blooded by Prabhakran and his ruthless terrorists.  No pundits, or analysts and TV debaters are needed to highlight the damage done to this nation by LTTE terrorists.   All those who are living today may personally know of horror created by LTTE inhuman violence.   It was a time when life and living was uncertain.  It was a time when fear dominated every second of the day.  The ordinary  and not so ordinary citizens were helpless and lived in constant fear.  The armed forces were helpless and they were made cannon fodder by leaders who devised unplanned operations against the LTTE.  All due to lack of a good, an effective and decisive commander-in-chief or a President.

Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa is the only leader who steered the nation, its armed forces and resources against the LTTEsadly at some times to the ridicule and opposition from within the nation (for example the famous Medwachchi-Kilinochchi,  Pamankada-Alimankada nonsense uttered by a senior UNPer) and massive international pressure from some Western countries.  No terrorist incident had taken place in this nation since May 2009.   The nation owes it gratitude to Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa for totally eradicating the LTTE menace and making this nation a livable, safe and peaceful place once again.   While the countries which the west intervened under the pretext of restoring peace and democracy or protecting human rights suffer unimaginable hardships and destruction as evident from several states in the Middle East and Africa, Sri Lanka has become one of the most peaceful nations in the world today.   The growing international tourism is the best testament for this.

Fourth, from a geopolitical, geo-diplomatic and geo-economic point of view, when the western countries were pressurizing and indirectly punishing us,  Mr. MahindaRajapaksa had been successful in securing massive funds and resources from other nations in the world for the national development efforts.   The efforts by certain western countries whose politicians are depended on Tamil diaspora votes were trying to isolate Sri Lanka, Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa had been able to make their and thus Tamil diaspora’s project a complete flop. Although a few within and outside Sri Lanka with hatred toward Sri Lanka, take pain to argue that Sri Lanka is being isolated, the empirical evidence amply proves otherwise.  

Fifth,  Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa is the only leader in the post-Independence Sri Lanka who was able to introduce and then implement a totally innovative development model for the nation. The election manifestos presented by all previous leaders of this country clearly prove the bankruptcy of ideas when it come to the development of this nation.  The present opposition candidate does not propose any strategic development policy at all.  They had blindly followed either the discarded socialist model which introduced halpolu and mirispolu to this nation or destructive privatization which led to deliberate destruction of state enterprizes such as SATHOSA. 

The development model proposed by Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa in Mahinda Chintanais not only strategic but also it has already proven with definitive results at ground level.  The concept of making Sri Lanka a hub of Asia as clearly elaborated in the MahindaChintana need to be applauded as it uses the greatest natural resource of this nation- the location of this country.  As a geographer, I am encouraged that we have a leader who can steer the nation taking its prime resource as the key catalytic factor in its development strategy. It is this thinking and its effective implementation that has propelled Sri Lanka from a poor nation into the middle income country. These are undeniable truths that the opposition candidate and his supporters and not even ever critical JVP can disprove.

Sixth, the leaders of the nations which has risen from poverty have proven that if a country needs rapid and sustained development, it has to first develop its infrastructure.  The expressways, better highways,  harbours and airports, power generation are the fundamental requirement of attracting capital and thus ensuring development.  We have already witnessed how the larger infrastructural projects have induced local development.  The best evidence of this is the Hambantota region.  Once a sleepy little village has now become a major center of economic activity not only in Sri Lanka but in the region.  The world has realized this.  How else can we explain the decision by the global hotel chain Hyatt Regency planning to open a five star hotel in Hambantota.  These infrastructural projects are long term investments which will bring dividends for generations to come.When one look at the total development activity in the nation in all spheres today, there is no parallel to the economic boom that had taken place during the  last 5 years.

Seventh is the regionally balanced development that is being implemented.  The southern Sri Lanka has been completely neglected by all past governments.  Until recently, Hambantota region was  truly a Beddegama (village in the  jungle).  For most Sri Lankan Hambantota was the place where they bought Dodol on the way to Kataragama.  Some of the political and development pundits has blamed the negligence of south as the main reasons for the JVP led bloody insurrection in the 1970s.  Look at the South today.  Hambantota has emerged a global destinations.  The south has come of age.  What is sad is that some of those critiques blame the government for developing the south with the ridiculous reason  that it is the home village of  Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa. What these idiotic critiques fail to see is that there are millions of other Sri Lankan live in the south beside Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa and south Sri Lanka is also an integral part of Sri Lanka.

Go to the North.  For thirty years Northern region was detached from the larger Sri Lankan economy.  The only constructions that LTTE did during this period were to build underground bunkers and over-ground cemeteries – both relating to death. LTTE not only failed to do anything positive for the development of the north, it destroyed the development infrastructure that was there – Kankasanturai Cement Factory, Pranthan Chemical Factory,  Northern Railway and high-tension electricity transmission lines are only the most visible destructions of LTTE.   Kilinochchi, which LTTE claimed as the capital of eelam” was an undeveloped hamlet under LTTE. Kilinochchi today in one of the most modern towns in Sri Lanka and it is one of the fast growing.   The developed road network in the north is the envy of the nation. Rebuild northern railway has once again linked the north to the south.  Northern economy is booming with close interactions with the south.  With time Jaffna will certainly reclaim its position as the second economic hub of Sri Lanka.  

Eighth, under Mahinda Rajapaksa government the capital city of Colombo and other regional cities are undergoing major transformations.  Colombo, a few years back, was an unattractive, and disorganized and was a place not to live but to leave as soon as one finishes the official work.  Today, Colombo is becoming an attractive, orderly and aesthetically pleasing city of world class.  Recently, a diplomat from a neighbouring country who visited the University of Peradeniya appreciatively commented how clean and beautiful Colombo is.  Colombo is becoming human friendly city where one can actually spend time in.  Colombo is also attracting international capital as seen from the construction boom in the city. As a citizen of Sri Lanka we can proudly showcase Colombo to the world.  My own hometown, Kandy is also experiencing the same transformation.  Once a highly congested, ugly town center is being rapidly transformed into a livable city.   Take any other city,  Galle in South, Kilinochchi in the North are but a few examples.

Ninth is the transformation that is taking place in education.  For the first time in the post-Independence Sri Lanka, we have a leader in President Rajapaksa who has understood the role the knowledge in modern world economy and the fact that future development of Sri Lanka  depends crucially on  how well we develop our human resources.  Expanding science education at school level through Mahindodaya program, the expanding the opportunities in higher education so that larger number of school children could obtain University level education are just two examples.   Contrary to the highly biased and hypocritical criticisms made by certain political groups and a segment of the university academic community, President Rajapaksa has raised the allocation of resources for tertiary education to unprecedented levels, thus providing increased funds for research, a substantial elevation of emoluments to the university staff, higher Mahapola scholarship payments, and various improvements in the facilities provided to students on university campuses. The Rajapaksa government has, indeed, rescued university education in Sri Lanka from the gloom that had engulfed it over several previous decades.

 One can add several dozen other reasons as to why the citizens of this country should vote for Mahinda Rajapaksa at the upcoming election.  One only needs to compare what the country was five years ago and now  to  see the difference.  Any one who cannot see this is a blind, and anyone who does not want to see this is a fool and a hypocrite.

My final and tenth reason why we should vote for Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa at the upcoming presidential election is very simple but extremely pertinent and critical.  We need stability and continuation, if we are to maintain the peace we have achieved and development that we are experiencing right now.  Any abrupt change will push this nation into chaos.  After 30 years of experiencing violence and over 60 years of poverty, this nation deserve to move forward.  The path that has been created for this nation by Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa is good, peaceful and prosperous.  To continue along this path this nation should return Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa as the President at the upcoming election. 

7 Responses to “Why Should You Vote for Mahinda Rajapaksa for Presidency of Sri Lanka?”

  1. Christie Says:

    India did it in 1951 behind our back in 1951 by funding SWRD.. Repeated it in 2005 by supporting Mahinda but Mahiunda did not become a puppet of India. Then came Sarath Fonseka and now Chandrika with her coolie Sirisena..

  2. Samanthi Says:

    If you’ve not yet decided whom to vote or have any doubts about the conduct of the present govt. led by HE the President Mahinda Rajapakse, I kindly invite you to view the two part video interview given to Daily Mirror by Minister Wimal Weerawansa. It is now available in the online edition of Daily Mirror.

    It covers almost all the questions you have in mind and the answers you all need to know. A must view video!

  3. ranjit Says:

    We all know who were the enemies of our land thru past experience. The real traitors were from within our country itself were JR. who asked Indians to come to our land and allow them to kill our own people. Premadasa who said once that Prabakaran was his brother and gave them money and equipment to kill our own Sinhala heroes. Chandrika who brought the whole white traitors from the west and allowed to walk freely and help the terrorists to move around the country to kill as they pleased our own leaders and innocent civilians. Ranil who had torture chambers to punish our own people and the traitor who gave in writing half of our land to Prabakaran’s hand in front of TV cameras.

    Traitors from outside were Indians who trained and Financed the most ruthless terror group in the world. Who entered our Air space without any permission to help Prabakaran etc. The others were Norway,America,England,Canada,Europe etc.

    Apart from these traitors a true Hero was born to save our land and that was the current President Mahinda Rajapksa. Why we give our vote to him because he is the only man who kept his promise and saved our country from that Butcher Prabakaran. He told to the foreign traitors to get out from our land to their faces and equipped our heroes to finish what others couldnt do for last thirty years. That is enough to give this man our vote. Our stupids must understand if that war wasn’t over what will be our position now? How many of our innocent civilians and leaders would have been killed? Do not think of your stomach only. Do not believe on those bogus promises of Ranil and Chandrika two evils. The truth should prevail and the true hero of our land should be elected to Govern for the third time. Long live Mahinda. Aiyo Sirisena has to go.

  4. Ananda-USA Says:

    Dear Old Wiggie joins the Koti Chorus …. as expected!

    Let him BRAY until the 13th Amendment is FINALLY & PERMANENTLY REPEALED in the NEXT 6-year Presidential term!

    Jackass-a-jump and Bray,
    Let him BRAY, let him BRAY
    …..Harry Belafonte….

    ……….
    Northern Province CM backs Tamil party’s call to support opposition candidate at Sri Lanka election

    Colombopage

    Jan 05, Colombo: Northern Province Chief Minister C V Wigneswaran has called on the Tamil people to support the decision taken by the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) to back common opposition Presidential candidate Maithripala Sirisena at the Presidential election.

    Addressing the Tamil people, Wigneswaran said after much thinking he has decided that Tamils have only one option- to vote for the Common Candidate, Maithripala Sirisena.

    “Not voting as the TNA has urged would portray us as a divided group with no political power. We have to show that we are a power to be reckoned with; that parties that come to power in the South need us to build coalitions. Voting in numbers will give us that respect and political bargaining power,” the Chief Minister points out.

    “It is not important whether their decision is right or wrong. Even those who say it was a wrong decision have not come out openly and asked others to vote for Mahinda,” he says.

    Wigneswaran says a vote against the present regime is a vote for democracy and urged the northerners to vote for the common opposition candidate and not let the “undemocratic measures that the government will most likely take,” discourage them.

  5. nilwala Says:

    Thank you Prof. Hennanayaka for setting out in detail all the reasons why Pres. Mahinda R should be voted into office for another term by a grateful nation for all that he has achieved for the country in these short ~5yr.
    The allegations re infrastructure expenses have been explained but not many seem to have heard as the megaphone of the Common Opposition dominates the airwaves, keeping on blaring forth in Goebellian fashion (copied from the LTTE diaspora), .
    Hope the people WHO ARE CAPTIVATED BY THE IDEA OF CHANGE are able to cast off the blinds of “CHANGE” which has been transmitted as a buzzword etched into foolish unthinking minds, just as the mirage of a separate state was set in the minds of foolish Tamil people for decades.
    The NATION MUST LOOK FORWARD TO A CONTINUED PEACE WHEREIN THERE WILL BE NO OPPORTUNITY FOR THE PEDDLARS OF SEPARATISM TO ONCE MORE SET THE COUNTRY BACK INTO WAR.

  6. Ananda-USA Says:

    Aiyoo, Palwatte Gamaralage Maithripala Yapa Sirisena!

    YAHAPALANAYA = MAITHRIPALANAYA = KOTIPALANAYA!

    200 Years after that YEAR OF INFAMY 1815, in 2015 you have chosen to deliver Mother Lanka BOUND HAND & FOOT to her ENEMIES!

    But, FEAR NOT PATRIOTS, the same fate that befell the Arch-Traitor of that day, Pilimithalawa will befall the backstabbing traitor Palwatte Gamaralage Maithripala Yapa Sirisena too!

    Aiyoooo Sirisenaaaa…..What have you done to yourself and to our motherland!

  7. Ananda-USA Says:

    To the ALWAYS FAITHFUL Patriots,

    A Heartfelt Tribute in Gratitude!

    Semper Fidelis, Patriots of Lanka

    By Ananda-USA

    Our Motherland, resplendent Sri Lanka,
    Hallowed be thy name!
    Thy children flock today to vote,
    To preserve thy immortal flame!

    The Lion Flag flutters proudly aloft,
    To remind us this freedom’s day!
    Our duty to keep thee, safe and strong,
    As our forefathers did yesterday!

    A Mahinda Rajapaksa by deed and word,
    Strode forth boldly to eternal fame!
    To lead his people to a safer world,
    When all others retreated in shame!

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