The story of a Puppet who has no policies
Posted on December 11th, 2009

Garvin Karunaratne, Ph.D. Former Government Agent, Matara District, 

For a long time Sri Lanka had two major Political Parties, one of which secured the majority to rule depending on the decision of the people at the polls. In 1970 it was the socialist SLFP led coalition. In 1977 it was Jayawardena who moved to embrace the West and the IMF. In 1995 Kumaranatunge came back with the socialists and again Ranil Wickremasinghe established a Government in 2001. Mahinda Rajapaksa became the President in 2005 on a socialist card. In all these elections the contenders for the presidency had their own policies and plans. At the 2005 Presidential Election our President submitted the Mahinda Chintanaya, the most comprehensive cluster of policies ever included in any one election manifesto. I have lived through elections in Sri Lanka, in the USA, in the UK and never have I seen so comprehensive an election manifesto. This included the development of the country as well as defeating the terrorists. Restoring the sovereignty of the country from shore to shore was a task that had defied attempts by all past Presidents . Mahinda Rajapaksa has achieved the task of defeating the terrorists and now his realm covers the entire island.

 The contenders for the Presidency have always come out with election manifestos that set out their policies and aims to the people. Publicity is done based on the ideas they have included in their Manifesto. The people can read the manifesto and decide whom to vote for. The current election is very different. On one side we have President Mahinda Rajapaksa with his policies and plans. People have had a taste of his development programmes like Gama Neguma and many are the infrastructure development schemes in progress. He is about to declare an extended Mahinda Chintanaya. On the other hand, the United National Party the other major political party has no candidate to put forward. Instead they have come to a clandestine agreement with the Ultra Left Janata Vimukti Peramuna to have a common candidate. They have somehow won over the former Army Commander, Sarath Fonseka, to come forward to stand for the election and have laid down the conditions that he had to adhere to if he wins the presidency. Sarath Fonseka has agreed to the conditions laid down and in this he is no other than a puppet. The UNP and the JVP have already started quarrelling about the conditions. Ranil Wickremasinghe states that his prime condition is that if Fonseka wins the Presidency, then he should abolish the Executive Presidency and appoint Ranil Wickremasinghe as the Caretaker Prime Minister. Thereafter the President should step into oblivion. The JVP will not have Wickremasinghe as the caretaker Prime Minister. Later Ranil Wickremasinghe says that he does not want to be the caretaker Prime Minister. Very recently Sarath Fonseka changed his stance and now says that he will not agree to be a ceremonial President, in which case the agreement he has made with the UNP and JVP to appoint Ranil Wickremasinge as the caretaker Prime Minister appears null and void.

To start with none of them have read to understand the Constitution of Sri lanka because the President does not hold the power to abolish the Presidency. This reveals their capacity and woe be unto us if any of them become our President!

Meanwhile the common candidate, Sarath Fonseka in his confusion with the contradictory policies of the two political parties- the UNP and the JVP for which he appears, has very little to say about his policies and plans. The very fact that he has agreed to be a puppet to both the UNP and the JVP sums up the very fact that he cannot have any policy at all, because the UNP professes a free market oriented pro-Imperialist policy which is totally opposed to the JVP policy of anti-Imperialism. The JVP will not dream of a free market economy. Their policies are all ultra socialist and in their second uprising in 1986-1987, it was the UNP that killed them in droves- a mass of around 80,000 youths were gunned down by the UNP of which Ranil Wickremasinghe was then a key minister. It is a well known fact that scores of JVP youths were tortured and some killed at Batalanda and it is said that all this torture and murder happened with the knowledge of Ranil Wickremasinghe. His chief lieutenant, the Superintendent of Police, Douglas Peries has been sentenced to imprisonment for murdering a JVP youth. Ranil Wickremasinghe vows to implement the 13 th Amendment- giving police powers and full devolution to the provinces, while the JVP will not have anything of it. It was the JVP that successfully beseeched the Supreme Court for the demerger of the two Provinces- the North and the East,. The JVP is against the 13 th Amendment.

I can understand the policies of Former Army Commander Fonseka if he came either from the UNP or the JVP, but when he is with both the UNP and the JVP with diametrically opposed policies, he poses as someone whose main aim is merely to capture power.

 Already there are cracks. Stalwarts of the UNP have questioned Ranil Wickremasinghe why they cannot field one of their own as the leader. Priyanga Kotalawela, a Central Committee member of the JVP has resigned in confusion as to why an anti imperialist JVP is supporting the Imperialist UNP.

 Perhaps Fonseka has no policy of his own other than to pick up a morsel from the UNP and the JVP. And he is also supported by Mano Ganeshan whose main condition is that Fonseka will be a temporary president. Mano Ganeshan appears to have more power than a President to declare that anyone elected by the people at an election will be a temporary President! What has happened is that the UNP, the JVP & Mano Ganeshan have found a hireling to do their bidding. It is also possible that Sarath Fonseka is using them as a cat’s paw to capture power and then dump them. If Sarath Fonseka does get elected he can easily dump them.

 The policies that former Army Commander Fonseka has to follow become clear as he has to be guided by the two major political parties that are supporting him. The UNP and the JVP Though these two Parties do not share a common idealogy yet they are Parties that have been in existence for long and have a history behind them. Go by History and History does not lie.

 The UNP under Ranil Wickremasinghe can be expected to function just in the manner that he did when he held the position of Prime Minister in 2001. It was during this period that Ranil Wickremasinghe agreed with the LTTE on the infamous CFA(Ceasefire Agreement). The manner in which the LTTE was accepted as having wide powers over the area they had forcibly occupied indicates that the UNP will rule Sri Lanka with the LTTE cadres that are yet alive.. Based on this record the East and the North including a portion of Anuradhapura District will be handed over on a platter back to the terrorists to rule as they wish. Another Prabhakaran will emerge. Perhaps the statement ascribed to the former Army Commander Fonseka to the effect that he will accept funds from Prabhakaran’s parents definitely indicates that Fonseka is a hireling of the LTTE Diaspora. Remember that Prabhakaran ran a totalitarian realm in the North and the East with the power of the gun. There were no human rights whatsoever and human rights activists who are vociferous today never hummed a word. They would have been hounded out and brutally murdered if they dared.

 In short the LTTE Diaspora is working through the UNP and JVP to gain what they could not get through Prabhakaran. If that is true, then the role that Fonseka played as the Army Commander in defeating the LTTE was an action of a mercenary that worked under the Government of Sri Lanka. He did command the Army to defeat the LTTE because he was directed to do so by Defence Secretary Gotabhaya and the President Rajapaksa.

 Sarath Fonseka is at last coming out in his true colours!

 The manner in which Sarath Fonseka has come up as a hireling for the Presidency., with no policies of his own, and couched through the garb of the Ultra Left JVP and the ultra right UNP, stating that he is for the Free market economy, little knowing that the JVP is diametrically opposed to any such Imperialist idea, indicates that his policies have been picked out of a hat without a great deal of thought. He states that he will bring in democracy little understanding that it is the democratic process that President Rajapaksa believes in which has enabled this Presidential election. President Rajapaksa’s avowed allegiance to democracy is something to be admired, though it may be costly. The JVP insurrections in 1971 and 1988/89 were against a democratically elected Government.

Ranil Wickremasinghe continues as the leader of the UNP despite his endless defeats and protests by Party stalwarts, tells us of the UNP’s idea of democracy. If Ranil Wickremasinghe understands what democracy is he should immediately stand down and allow the members of the UNP to elect their leader. Sarath Fonseka is aligned to two non-democratic political parties, but talks of standing for democracy. This indicates that Sarath Fonseka himself does not understand the true meaning of the word democracy

 Sarath Fonseka tells that he will bring about media freedom. What more media freedom than having newspapers and correspondents who are daily writing against the President. Professor Sarathchandra was my teacher at Peradeniya, a revered personality. Never belligerent, soft spoken, small made, courteous to the extreme- even he was beaten up by goons of the UNP for speaking about freedom. That happened during President Jayawardena’s time. It was not at mid night for people not to see in the dark. It happened when he was speaking out on a platform in the presence of many listeners. That was the time when the goons stoned the residences of the Supreme Court Judges. That was also the time when Dramatist writer Richard de Zoysa was murdered in cold blood. The JVP is generally held responsible for the death of Premakirti de Alwis, one of the best lyric writers of the modern age. His lyrics appealed to the young and his death was a great loss to Sinhala Literature. What of the lassie Sagarika Gomes who was taken out of her home at mid night by armed goons, raped and killed on the Mount Lavinia beach all for reading a news scripot on the Radio. The present record is not that marred.

 On the whole Sarath Fonseka stands out as a true puppet. He even did not have the capacity to draft his own resignation letter. It was drafted by a politician and he changed it which shows that his resignation was also done because he was a true puppet in the hands of a hitherto unknown force.

 It is well known that Ambalangoda is the home of puppetry in Sri Lanka. Perhaps time will reveal the identity of those that pulled the strings.

 Garvin Karunaratne, Ph.D.
Former Government Agent, Matara District.

9 th December 2009

2 Responses to “The story of a Puppet who has no policies”

  1. Raj Says:

    Well said Garvin. Thank you for your analysis and facts we have forgotten, and the young generation even didn’t know. JVP killed many innocent people, and inflicted fear on people. It was a relief when the far leftist JVP was suppressed in good time. For that I don’t blame the UNP. But Ranil has always been a loser, and he killed the UNP. He will never revive it.

  2. nagananda54 Says:

    This is good piece of writing produced to support the MR. There is no issue as writer correctly said RW is an utter MUTT. I think calling RW mutt sums up everything. Yet, I believe those learned people have a higher moral responsibility to the people of Sri Lanka and to influence the Presidential candidate embrace all elements of good governance.
    Surely, MR is a courageous very humble, down to earth man. But he requires the support of those patriotic learned people to guide the country in the right direction. They should be utterly fearless to criticise the President when he is at fault and advance all sorts of wrongdoing and anti-social elements. I believe that is the only way that MR could be influenced to shun those elements than ruin his credibility and to become a true leader who could bring a difference to the quality of life of people of Sri Lanka. He has all necessary qualities to become the Sri Lanka’s true leader like MAHATHIR MOHOMED of Malaysia or LEE KUAN YOU of Singapore.
    I am a professional, a lawyer, domiciled in the UK who recently visited Sri Lanka in response to the President’s clarion call seeking the support of those who left the country for various reasons in the Nation building effort launched by the President. I am sure those who met the President was pretty impressed with him. MR is thousand times better compared to “bigheaded” CB, the former President or RW, the self-centred model of incompetence. CB ruined the golden opportunity she had when she was elected by the popular vote. She allowed and connived with all crooks to suck the blood of the nation; completely forgot the wishes of the people who gave her clear mandate and finally paid the penalty.
    It is absolutely true that had RW or CB been the President, they would never have ended the war and would have pleaded before the French and British who tried every card in the pack to force the Govt of Sri Lanka end the military campaign against the ruthless terrorists.
    I believe we have a duty, at least in a very small way, to influence the President with a view to install law and order, true democratic values, accountability and so on so forth. I will make my own representation to both Presidential candidates backed by facts, in few days time drawing their attention to the importance of the honouring and respecting the intelligence of the people and adhering to the oath taken under the Supreme Law, the Constitution to be faithful to the people and discharge the functions of the office of the President honestly and effectively.

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