Author Archive for Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha

What civil society ignored

Monday, November 26th, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today I realized when what is termed civil society threw its weight behind Maithripala Sirisena at the end of 2014, that it was divided between those who hated the Rajapaksas and those who wanted good governance. Sadly, the last four years have shown that the former are dominant, and even […]

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March of Folly Sri Lankan Foreign Policy

Friday, September 7th, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today When Gandhi was asked what he thought of Western civilization, he responded that he thought it would be a good idea. One is tempted to say the same with regard to Sri Lankan foreign policy, but that would be to ignore what was an extraordinarily impressive profile in the […]

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Pursuing Peace Rehabilitation without Reintegration

Saturday, July 14th, 2018

By Prof Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today There was another area in which we did much vital work in the period before the war ended, but that too in the end fell prey to rival ministerial ambitions. This was the question of Rehabilitation of former combatants, for which we formulated a policy with the assistance of […]

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The 100-day manifesto – a contemporary account

Sunday, June 3rd, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy The Island Since there is now some confusion about the 100-day manifesto, with lots of contradictory claims, I thought I should republish the first clear account of what happened, which was written soon after the events themselves. Though it may be claimed that my memory too may be at fault (not […]

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The need for professional Ministers

Monday, May 28th, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today Though I am no longer a member of the National Human Resources Development Council (NHRDC), I am still working with the Organization of Professional Associations trying to promote reforms that will give us a more efficient public sector. I could not attend the last discussion they had, to fine […]

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The March of Folly Destroying Continuity

Tuesday, April 24th, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today When I served on the National Human Resources Development Council, I chaired a committee to recommend new ways of working in the public sector. We looked at several issues, but amongst them one that resonated with the Organization of Professional Associations, whom I was asked to meet to take […]

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The March of Folly Continuing vacillation

Tuesday, April 17th, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today Two months after the Local Government Elections, which made it clear that the country lacks confidence in the current Government, there has been no change in the course, or perhaps one should say the absence of any course, the government is embarked upon. Its only significant achievements thus far […]

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The March of Folly How Ranil sabotaged English medium

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today Now that it looks like we have Ranil to stay for a few months more, it may be instructive to examine how he often cannot help cutting off his nose to spite his face. What happened way back when he was Prime Minister came back to me when he […]

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UNP guilty of bond scam both by commission and omission -Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha

Monday, January 29th, 2018

By Kelum Bandara Courtesy  The Daily Mirror Former MP Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha, who served in the COPE during the previous Parliament, in an interview with the Daily mirror  spoke about the bond scam in the Central Bank and of other happenings in the political front. Following are excerpts of the interview done with Prof. Wijesinha.  Q As a member of the […]

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The March of Folly Understanding why Mahinda Rajapaksa lost

Friday, January 12th, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today I looked last week at Nalaka Godahewa’s account of why Mahinda Rajapaksa lost, which he attributed to the excessive influence of eight people who “were not listening to the voices of the grassroots anymore.” Though an intelligent analysis of some aspects of the last years of the Rajapaksa Administration, […]

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The March of Folly Understanding why Mahinda Rajapaksa was defeated: the good ‘cronies’

Tuesday, January 2nd, 2018

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today ‘Surrounded by cronies and not listening to those who mattered’ is the explanation Nalaka Godahewa gave in an article in Ceylon Today on why Mahinda Rajapaksa lost. I found it most interesting, with added value from the fact that Godahewa was close to the former President, and indeed came […]

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Marapana as compromise Prime Minister

Tuesday, December 12th, 2017

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today While there is much uncertainty now about what will happen to the country, certain certainties are assured. Chief amongst them is the headlong destruction of his reputation that Ranil has precipitated in the last three years. I do not refer only to his unashamed capers with regard to the […]

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The March of Folly The sad death of liberal Karu

Tuesday, November 14th, 2017

By Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today The saddest casualty of the Yahapalanaya Government determination to abandon all pretence of promoting democracy, let alone good governance, has been Karu Jayasuriya. I once thought of him as a decent man, weak but never doing dastardly deeds on his own. When he first started abusing the Office of Speaker, […]

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The March of Folly A simplistic and confused Attorney General

Tuesday, October 24th, 2017

By Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today A little learning is a dangerous thing. It is also sad when limited intellect leads to high appointments on the grounds that there will be unthinking support of the appointing authority. This seems to be the case with the current Attorney General (AG), who seems in a couple of weeks, […]

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Invoking intelligence in the foreign ministry Mission impossible:

Sunday, October 22nd, 2017

By PROF. RAJIVA WIJESINHA Courtesy The Island October 22, 2017, 9:41 pm The details of the Sri Lankan triumph in the 2009 Geneva special session as described in Sanja de Silva Jayatilleka’s Mission Impossible Geneva, should be essential reading for all those concerned about Sri Lanka’s foreign relations. It is of particular importance that members of […]

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The March of Folly The dance of deceit

Tuesday, October 10th, 2017

By rajiva Wijesinha Ceylon Today Features Amongst the more endearing explanations offered by Ranil’s friends for his involvement in the Bond Scam is that he was taken for a ride. The response then to the question why he defended Mahendran so vociferously is that Mahendran also was taken for a ride. Then the answer to the […]

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The march of folly The mirror cracks

Tuesday, August 29th, 2017

Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today Developments in the two weeks I was away suggest that the government is, a year before I expected it, hurtling towards its end. Or rather I should say towards its end as we know it, since the manner in which the Elections Bill was changed at whim suggests that we are back […]

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Suggestions for Improving the Quality of Our Legislators

Sunday, July 30th, 2017

Presentation at the OPA / Association of Scientific and Techinical Officers Seminar  by Prof Rajiva Wijesinha July 29, 2017, 6:42 pm Let me begin with some very simple concepts, since these will help us to understand what exactly we should aim for in trying to improve the quality of our legislators. First, we should examine […]

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The SLFP core

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017

Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today Dayan Jayatilleka’s current forceful advocacy of Gotabaya Rajapaksa as the best possible future leader of this country has raised many hackles, but I believe he has answered the criticisms raised effectively. What he has not explored is the irony of there being two contradictory approaches adopted, one accusing him of inconsistency in […]

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Western encouragement of terrorism

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy The Ceylon Today Another mark of increasing age, though I suppose I should be pleased at this one, was a request to deliver a memorial lecture. The topic given to me was “The March of Folly”, which led me to look up the origin of the phrase. I knew it was the title of […]

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End of a long road

Monday, March 13th, 2017

Rajiva Wijesinha The election was held on 17 August and four days later I learnt that I had not been put into Parliament. I had been on the UPFA National List, which I gathered had been with the approval of both factions of the SLFP. But it had become clear almost immediately that the polarization that […]

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Dealing with adverse propaganda

Sunday, May 29th, 2016

By Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Ceylon Today Concerted attacks, however, lay far in the future. In 2009 we were dealing rather with generalizations, and the threat then was not allegations of war crimes, but rather efforts to galvanize international opinion against us and stop the slow but steady progress of the forces in the North. I had […]

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The Paranagama & The Geneva Reports: Attempts To Mislead The Public

Wednesday, October 28th, 2015

Prof. Rajiva Wijesingha I have refrained thus far from getting involved in the debate over the Geneva Resolution for a number of reasons. One is a commitment to finalize a few books, and in particular an account of what Sri Lanka did right, in winning the war, and then did wrong in losing the peace. […]

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Chandrika’s techniques of character assassination-The lessons of Batalanda

Tuesday, August 18th, 2015

By Prof Rajiva Wijesingha – Seeing all the posters asserting that ruggerite Wasim Thajudeen was murdered, I was struck by the similarity to the allegations made when Chandrika Kumaratunga was President regarding Batalanda. The Sunday Leader in December 2001, soon after the UNP won the election she had called, wrote: ‘The legacy of evil that […]

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Ranil’s dishonesty gets worse by the day

Sunday, August 2nd, 2015

Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Ranil’s dishonesty gets worse by the day. But even more startling perhaps is his brazen hypocrisy. And what seems to be open mockery of the President. There have been multiple allegations of corruption with regard to the last government, but most were generalizations. There was in fact only one clear instance cited […]

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Ranil and Highways

Sunday, August 2nd, 2015

Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha Second instalment of roadscam, you might like also to question the Secretary who was suddenly dismissed, Mr Udaya Seneviratne, and perhaps the Chinese Embassy too about the earlier and curent projects, since the Prime Minister claims that the EXIM Bank of China will be funding this project too Dealings of the current […]

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What went wrong for the ‘rainbow coalition’

Friday, July 10th, 2015

Rajiva Wijesinha Courtesy Island Rajiva Wijesinha was one of the main figures in the yahapalana coalition that overthrew President Mahinda Rajapaksa in January this year. Before former chief justice Sarath N.Silva began to speak up against the yahapalana government, Rajiva was the most prominent yahapalana intellectual to openly express his discontent at what the new government […]

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Did Gotabaya Precipitate The Crisis With Chris Nonis?

Sunday, October 26th, 2014

By Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha In the course of the frenetic travel programme I had set myself before the usual budget period, I had just two days in Sri Lanka last week. They were packed, with Parliament, and an overnight stay with a cousin visiting after several days, and the 92nd birthday of my most distinguished aunt, […]

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Enemies of the President’s Promse: Mahinda Rajapaksa and the Seven Dwarfs – Sleepy (Part 3)

Monday, October 13th, 2014

Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha October 11, 2014 in Enemies of the President’s Promise | Tags: C R De Silva, Darusman, G L Peiris,H. M. G. S. Palihakkara, Mahinda Samarasinghe, Ministry of Human Rights, Mohan Pieris, National Human Rights Action Plan, Rohan Perera, study group, UN, UN Secretary General, Walter Kalin,Wimal Weerawansa Enemies of the President’s Promse: […]

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Enemies of the President’s promise

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

By PROF. RAJIVA WIJESINHA Courtesy Ceylon Today In May 2009, Sri Lanka seemed on top of the world. Under President Mahinda Rajapaksa, the Sri Lankan Government and forces had defeated the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, which had dominated Tamil politics in Sri Lanka. It had survived conflict with not just successive Sri Lankan Governments, but […]

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