BUILDING THE NATIONAL INTEGRATION IN SRI LANKA UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF EXECUTIVE PRESIDENT
Posted on December 23rd, 2018

BY EDWARD THEOPHILUS

The most significant political and social issue in Sri Lanka is building the national integration for the prosperity of Sri Lanka.  What is national integration? Shona Khurana (2010) has defined as National integration is the awareness of a common identity amongst the citizens of a country.  It means that though we belong to different castes, religions and regions, speaks different languages we recognized the fact that we are all one nation.  This kind of integration is very important in the building of a strong and prosperous nation.” (Please read: Shona Khurana National Integration: Complete Information on the meaning, features, and Promotion of National Integration in India” and Abhishek Singh (2009).

Shona Khurana explains building the national integration in India where has a more circuitous environment than in Sri Lanka where the environment is less complex and the diversity has limited to tiny differences and the demographic changes have been incurred since 1882 massively support to the national integration, minimizing the problem.  The lack of political leadership under the constitutional reforms encourage activities against the national integration.  The 19th amendment to the constitution in 2015 has sowed the vicious seeds against the national integration and the political leadership for the national integration. The political parties such as UNP, JVP, TNA, Muslim Congress and some others and so-called civil society representatives have become refugees of the ill-advised constitutional reforms and the behaviour of them during the past several years clearly showed that these group of people are against the national integration. However, the indigenous leader in Sri Lanka clearly stated that the executive presidency should not be abolished as it gives the leadership for the national integration.

Historically, the national integration of Sri Lanka established under the leadership of Kings, who never discriminated citizens of the country based on religions or regions or speaking different languages. (Please read Sir John Doyly (1835) A Sketch of the Constitution of THE KANDYAN KINGDOM”).   For example, Kings respected to Buddhism and Hinduism, and believes that the King Parakrama Bahu the Great was a Sinhala, but a believer of Hinduism.  Kings in Kandyan era allowed Muslim religion and Malay people and Kings in Kotte allowed Christianity. These are clear example that historically, Kings in the country gave the leadership for the national integration.

Shona Khurana explained that the British had encouraged communalism because of division between Hindus and Muslim made easier for them to control the country. …it is a result of narrow mindedness, prejudice and lack of knowledge of other religions”.

In Sri Lanka, similar strategy used in establishing the State Council by the Donoughmore Reform Commission in 1928. The representation to State Council was based on communalism, the promotion for dividing the nation rather than considering as a one nation.  The national integration became an issue in Sri Lanka as the language used by people of the country especially Sinhala and Tamil were accustomed to divide the nation by the British rulers. Some of the strategies used by British rulers to divide the nation such as Upcountry Sinhala and Low country Sinhala. was not successful as such a division was not externally reflecting in the body of the Sinhala community.

The divisive policy of British rulers encouraged to begin a political party called a Federal Party (Tamil Arasu Kachchi) in Sri Lanka by a person, who came from Malaysia.  The democratic rule initiated by the State Council promoted divisive attitudes in the country and later divisive attitudes further promoted to register political parties for religions and races.  The British rulers were directly responsible for the issue of the national integration in Sri Lanka.  Before British rulers there were Indian, Portuguese and Dutch rulers in the country, however they did not promote divisions and maintained the national integration as a one nation.

The introduction of executive presidential system in 1978 strongly supported to promote the national integration.  Political analysts such as Taci Vittachi (Emergency in 1958) and Prof. A.J. Wilson (Political Science in Ceylon) reported and analysed that how Mr SWRD Bandaranaike as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka struggled to control the communal problems in 1958 and Mr Oliver Gunatilake took executive power to his hand against the democratic traditions and successfully controlled the communal problems. Later Mr Premadasa as the Executive President controlled 1987-88 JVP Problem and Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa entirely controlled the Tamil Separatist terrorism.  These are examples for how executive presidential system plays a vital role to maintain the national integration and stability of the country.

The parliament of Sri Lanka has already lost its dignity and people have no faith on it.  Mr Sirisena clearly showed that the executive president can control any conspiracies against the unity of the country and it can gives the leadership for the national integration.

One Response to “BUILDING THE NATIONAL INTEGRATION IN SRI LANKA UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF EXECUTIVE PRESIDENT”

  1. Christie Says:

    Come on!

    Integration with aggressors and oppressors. The Indian Colonial Parasites who arrived udder the firepower of the British.

    These Parasites want us Sinhalese to integrate with 70 million of them and then with the 1.4 billion of them at large.

    The demographics are such that the Indian Colonial Parasite block vote will choose the executive president after dividing the Sinhala votes to pieces.

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