Reign of chaos
Posted on June 16th, 2017

Editorial Courtesy The Island

The provincial council system seems to have been jinxed since its inception. First, the provincial councils (PCs) were crippled by northern and southern terrorists. Today, the fund guzzling councils are characterised by debilitating power struggles and inefficiency.

Time was when the proponents of devolution argued that the provincial councils had failed to work because they, controlled by either the UNP or the SLFP, had been reduced to mere appendages of the government in power. This argument was not wholly untenable. The Chief Ministers of the PCs controlled by the ruling party find themselves in a political straitjacket; they don’t dare confront the government to guard their preserves as they, bound by party discipline, fear that their action might rile their political bosses. They are at the mercy of the executive President where their coveted positions are concerned.

When elections were held to the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) in peacetime and an administration, independent of the two main parties, was formed by the Illankai Tamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK), it was thought the new council would function properly. But, it, too, has failed to live up to pubic expectations. Instead of making the best use of powers already devolved by the 13th Amendment, for the benefit of the people in the war-torn areas, the NPC has chosen to pit itself against the state. Opposing decisions made in Colombo, in addition to supporting UNHRC resolutions against this country, and demanding federalism has been its raison d’etre. Accused of overstepping its constitutionally prescribed limits, it is preoccupied with passing resolutions of all sorts against the government instead of serving the public.

The situation in the NPC has taken a turn for the worse owing to a power struggle within the ruling coalition. The TNA old guard feels threatened by NP Chief Minister C. V. Wigneswaran, who has come to represent an alternative power centre in northern politics. The much-talked about motion of no-confidence against Wigneswaran has been the outcome of the bitter rivalries between the two warring factions. Those who are backing him have held a hartal against the move to oust him and handed over a petition against the no-faith motion at issue, we are told. They, however, have been able to muster the backing of only 15 members in the 38-member council, according to media reports. The ITAK alone has 30 seats in the NPC; the UPFA has seven seats and the SLMC one.

The TNA’s political agenda may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but, as a mainstream party, it has a pivotal role to play in preserving democracy in the post-war period. In spite of its past sins, it remains popular and is capable of preventing extra parliamentary opposition from emerging in the North and the East as an alternative force in Tamil politics. Such a movement might be able to thrive by capitalising on public disillusionment with the main parties as we saw in the early 1980s and, worse, act as a vehicle for extremism. Troublemakers are likely to hijack the ongoing protest campaigns and cause them to get out of hand so that they can radicalise the youth to achieve their sinister ends.

It behoves the TNA big guns to act responsibly without going for another’s jugular at the drop of a hat and, thereby, plunging the North and East into chaos, which breeds anarchical extremism. They must sort out their differences without placing democracy in jeopardy. Let the government be urged to tread cautiously and pour oil on troubled waters in the northern politics.

With the NPC embroiled in a crisis, all the provincial councils are now in a shambles due to power struggles. The state of affairs at the centre is equally shambolic thanks to a political cold war between the two main parties which have come together to hold their mutual enemies at bay. Needless to say that chaos at both the centre and the periphery bodes ill for democracy.

4 Responses to “Reign of chaos”

  1. Ananda-USA Says:

    There is a SIMPLE SOLUTION to MOST OF THE ILLS of Sri Lanka, including its LOOMING DISINTEGRATION into warring communal Bantustans, and inefficient governance with MULTIPLE LAYERS of bureaucratic non-functioning government padded with power hungry deshapaluas:

    1. REPEAL the 13th Amendment, and DISSOLVE the Provincial Councils and REPLACE with a District System of Administration with Govt appointed officials accountable to the National Government,

    2. RETAIN and STRENGTHEN the Executive Presidency while REPEALING the 19th Amendment to remove term limits, as re-election of a President allows sufficient voter franchise

    3. ELIMINATE the Post of Prime Minister, while RETAINING and the post of Speaker of the House.

    4. CREATE a Senate/Upper House with 2 Senators per District to allow less populous Districts to have a greater voice than their populations warrant.

    5. Ban ALL Communal parties with Communal names and agendas that EXCLUDE members of ALL Communities from membership and Leadership roles.

    6. STRENGTHEN & ENFORCE TREASON & CORRUPTION Laws!

    7. BAN foreign NGOs and Diplomats from interfering in the INTERNAL AFFAIRS of the country. ALL foreign AID and INTERACTIONS must come through the ELECTED GOVERNMENT of the country.

    There is MORE that needs to be done, but these are the MOST IMPORTANT!

  2. Ananda-USA Says:

    Getting RID OF the Communal Demagogue Wigneswaran, a DESHADROHI SNAKE that the Sinhala people fostered in our bosom in Colombo, and TOOL of the EELAMIST Tamil Diaspora STILL attempting to carve out an EELAM from our Motherland, should have the HIGHEST PRIORITY.

    The TNA leaders are not far behind Wigneswaran as TRAITORS in PURSUING the EELAM Project.

    At the DROP OF A HAT, the TNA leaders URGE the WEST to ACT AGAINST their country in pursuit of that goal. This is MERELY a TEMPORARY TURF BATTLE among Incurably Communal Tamil leaders.

    Therefore, REPEALING the 13th Amendment and the DYSFUNCTIONAL REBELLIOUS Provincial Council Should should be the NEXT PRIORITY for Patriots!

    REMOVE these DAGGERS pointed at the HEART of Sri Lanka before IT IS TOO LATE!

  3. Ananda-USA Says:

    It was reported by Derana Prime Time News (6.55pm) today (2017.06.18) that forest areas of the Wilpattu National Park are being ILLEGALLY CLEARED with the connivance of the local Grama Sevakas and Palath Sabha officials. About 20 acres of land have al ready been cleared, first by setting the underbrush on fire, and then by cutting down the trees and carting them away as lumber. It is alleged that these lands will later be settled, and still later the wildlife, including elephants will be hunted down on the pretext of protecting the encroaching settlers.

    Let us ask who the National Ministers in charge of Land Resources, Environment, Wildlife protection, and Law Enforcement are doing while these ILLEGAL activities are BRAZENLY happening in an area where land grabbing has ALREADY been widely reported in the media?

    Are theset government officials SLEEPING, or are they CONNIVING with hand in glove with the lawnreakers?

    Certain Muslim ministers in the Yamapalanaya have been identified and accused of working to ILLEGALLY settle Muslims on land in this area!

    Why are these allegations not properly INVESTIGATED, and if TRUE, why are these CRIMINALS not arrested and PROSECUTED? Furthermore, WHY ARE THE RESPONSIBLE MINISTERS not summarily dismissed and PROSECUTED also? Do they have the right to carve out and create ethno-religious FIEFDOMS in the country without Parliamentary Sanction? It CERTAINLY SEEMS SO!

    ALL of these encroachments MUST BE REVERSED and the MISCREANTS PUNISHED as soon as a PATRIOTIC GOVERNMENT is restored to our Motherland!

  4. Lorenzo Says:

    USA,

    1. CLEARING WILPATTU and settling Muslims started in 2010.

    2. ALL these MINISTERS were EQUAL or BIGGER ministers in MR’s govt too!!

    TRADE AND COMMERCE and JUSTICE for Christ’s sake!!

    3. VIGGIE was APPOINTED CM in 2014. Even TNA rejects him because he is ULTRA ULTRA TE than TNA itself!!

    4. Also read what DAYAN JAYATILAKA has to say about MR and GR (Palestine and Israel).

    Remember I protested MADLY when SL donated $1 million to a TERRITORY called “Pale-s-tine” ruled by a TERRORIST group called HAMAS? You thought I was alone!

    Israel helped SL SO MUCH to win the war but AFTER winning the war what did ungrateful SL do??? Team up with the ENEMIES of Israel!! GR and I tried our very best to stop this madness but you know the rest. Now look what the enemies of Israel are doing to SL – turning SL into the next Jihadistan. Even then Israel is trying to save SL from them!!

    A TRUE friend is not a SWEET TALKING liar to make you happy. A TRUE FRIEND blasts you in raw filth when you try to do self harm. A true friend will get you by the EAR and save you from doing the wrong thing.

    A LIAR will PRAISE you when you do the wrong thing.

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