HERE IS ANOTHER ELECTION RESULT
Posted on July 22nd, 2015
By Gomin Dayasri
Here is an election result…UPFA led by Mahinda Rajapakse (MR) singularly as a party, has secured the largest number of members of parliament: yet is unable to form a government, as it cannot muster a majority.
Here is another election result… Alliance led by Ranil Wickremasinghe (RW) lags behind the UPFA in the populous south of Sri Lanka but with the help of the SLMC vote is nearing the 113 members required. Yet cannot overrun the turnstile, as the southern vote is overwhelmingly unfavorable.
These statements have a touch of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty Four  where events did not flow according to the script nevertheless was convincing at the time the book was launched.
It’s a gridlocked situation on the ground. President Sirisena is given a wide discretion to determine as to whom he should call to form the government according to the constitution – a discretion that cannot be tested except in the precincts of parliament.
Sirisena has his ear to the ground and is wise to know without winning the bulk Sinhala vote the lifespan of any government is stilted. Lonely Sirisena is indeed a man without a wise friend or a faithful dog- as to what he should do next, he wouldn’t know? But possesses intuitive shrewdness preferable to synthetic smoothness: needs fine tuning as he takes the country to the edge of a cliff. Its best he leaves his many inconsistencies unexplained as it defies explanation. His action belittles his small frame.
Think twice without being stupid to call either MR or RW alone if the result is close and tight- having suffered the experience of governing without a majority. Instead, forget your prejudices, overthrow your hostilities, call both MR & RW together/separately if the result is too close to call: to discuss forming a government of national reconciliation-they are both ingenious being in active politics for long, will come with a mutually satisfactory solution that will install a mechanism in the national interest: while simple simeon Sirisena continue to preside symbolically. Leave it to the people to decide and they will provide a result the country needs even if it becomes a close call.
A constitutional blunder made by the 19th amendment leaves Sri Lanka maimed. Provision is placed to prevent dissolution of parliament until four half years (4 1/2) has passed of the 5 year term. Coming to office will be a series of feeble governments unable to pass legislation or secure needed funds to turn the wheels of the administration or to render development or cannot be ousted by no- confidence motions passed in parliament.
Rushed legislation at the behest of Rasputin monks’ -the saffron peril – more interested in scoring brownie points for selfish gain than to establish a stable country, is the curse of the nation. They should be assigned to their temples attending to rituals rather than dabbling in politics, a subject unknown.
Whoever is the creator of the constitution –he is a closeted friend of the terrorists for setting an environment favored for dividing the country by fixing a series of weak governments made according to the order of the times. Gives rise to make shift governments in office to cover the mandatory 4-½ year period. It could lead to successive defeat of financial bills and the government having to accommodate loose mavericks in parliament to stay in power.
Voting will have a pattern in Round II of elections 2015. Emerging is a battle between the extremists, Buddhist Monks vs. Muslim Mullahs’, akin to a battle between the legendary werewolves and the mythical vampires. Strangely in Devin Jinadasa’s Silver Moon: The War Begins first in a trilogy [Published by London’ Austin Macauley (2015) June] a 14-year-old super brat springs a tale that makes the werewolves endearing; something the religious fanatics would not be able to achieve in an election year.
TNA is out of the equation with the fighting surfacing outside northern territories. To the credit of the TNA: they fight on their own territory with their own men with the money of the diaspora. Northern vote will have lesser impact than at a presidential election, as the vote does not get aggregated to a national count. Vote provides MPs for the north but no more except a few additions from the national list.
SLMC has been functional in varying cabinets without a trace of loyalty to any that installed them–lingered on enjoying benefits only to swivel around and bind with the benefactor’s opponents on the eve of the election seeking more benefits. Reminds of a local ditty to describe the characteristics of a moor men’s hat.
Indeed SLMC, identified as the carrier of the Muslim cause, stands disgraced as being selfishly opportunistic. How can trust and confidence be placed in a community, where its leaders are unprincipled rolling stones shifting sides gaining benefits. Are they helping the cause of the Muslims or their own cause by periodic change of stance?
So is the JHU – the other extremists. When Hela Urumaya in its infancy, won one seat on the national list, S.L. Gunasekera its leader was denied the seat offered to Hela Urumaya because a fraction led by the present leadership of the JHU protested on the grounds he was not a Buddhist and has not offered flowers at the Temple of the Tooth. A principled atheist S.L. Gunasekera did not worship at any temple or church or mosque; true to his conscience. The party denied Gunasekera the deserved slot and he resigned from the party. Single seat in parliament was shared by the other two captains of the Hela Urumaya, Tilak Karunaratne and Champika Ranawaka for the full term. Ironically JHU finds itself as a junior partner of a UNP outfit humbly contesting under its symbol after being one of its principle critics. Ironically JHU and SLMC fly under a common banner at the forthcoming election. Holding them as trustees of Buddhist interest, rigged in robes and white cloth, JHU has some of the most ambitious and wily politicians in their line up and would team up with the devil to further their interest.
The national lists of the two major parties are a disgrace as most of the occupiers in the lists are fit to be in Homes for the Aged and to enter Parliament on wheel chairs. Being likely to be rejected by the electorate MPs’ are nominated to the national list to ease their embarrassment of being dropped from the list of contestants and to end their days enhancing their pensions before making their final journey. It’s a happy life in a transitional home at public expense. A far cry from the intentions of the founding fathers of the constitution in creating a vaccum for nominated members.
Public servants are likely to swing more to the UNP having experienced the misuse of public property during election time during the last regime. The UNP leader has lost his bearing of a clean image on the performance of Arjuna Mahendra – probably the man UNP’ers will blame most if they lose. However at the final count down it is economics and cost of living that matters the most: this sure will hurt the present government as it did to the last government –the blame should be apportioned to the Treasury and Central Bank. It is much easier to contest as an opposition candidate, which is no longer the prerogative of the UNP.
This election comes too early for Mahinda Rajapakse and too late for Ranil Wickremasinghe. UNP would have been the sure winner if they did not hold the reins of government. Their performance at governance is now on display but sadly at a time they do not hold a majority in Parliament. Mahinda Rajapakse has to run with candidates whose records are liabilities and has to carry majority of the candidates on his back to win on his personal popularity.
If it is a contest between Mahinda and Ranil, for who will the people in the south of Sri Lanka vote? They will decide at a general election – for the vote in the south takes precedent due to bulk of the people living in those seven provinces.