Now, let’s go the whole way…
Posted on September 15th, 2010

by Mario Perera, Kadawata

The dust appears to be descending on the 18th amendment debate, as it always did and does on such matters. This means that when the last word has been said what is, endures and what is, is the power that is and what that power intends to do, as incorporated in this particular case, in the 18th amendment. The basic fact and truth is that the man in power was elected to that post by a massive mandate. This mandate was renewed equally massively as and when necessary by the population. The president holds his post with the blessings of the country as democracy demands. The country has given him the power to be what he is, and to do whatever he thinks should be done in their favour. Now such amendments as the 18th fall within that category of things and find favour with the population at large. Debating such matters is the right of all concerned. It helps to air views and to impress the ruler. Now that is done. What remains is to continue with the work of governance entrusted to the ruler.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ What is almost a blank cheque presented to the president by the people to govern as he wishes is grounded on an unprecedented feat. He did what no other was able to do for whatever the reason. And what he did is legendary, reviving what the nation considers to be it identity. It is as legendary as the victory of Duttu Gemunu over Elara. The two historic events which influence most the psyche of the nation as a whole, are very probably the Duttu Gemunu-Elara episode and the Mahinda-Prabhakaran event. Whatever one may say and preach in the name of communal harmony and peace, our history stands out from a background painted by the Sinhala-Tamil confrontations. Our history, ancient and modern holds out these two events as being the most significant and the deepest rooted in the common memory of the nation. Just as Duttu Gemunu lives and reigns in the minds and hearts of the people, so does Mahinda, and in all probability he will continue to do so, unless he does something really very foolish to turn the tide of popular adulation. This is of course pure speculation. Even so the people will continue to think of him with nostalgia and heart ache. We can hardly expect the USA and the Western powers to understand these deep seated roots of our national identity. It is therefore inevitable that we make a political shift away from them which is what is taking place. This is not without economic and consequently financial repercussions. The West with its values impregnated with money and gain will always hold out the carrot in front while menacingly wielding the stick at our posterior end. Yet the nationƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s soul will remain untouched.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ That our country was heading towards some sort of dictatorship with the peopleƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s blessing was obvious at least from the time of Mrs. Bandaranayake. J.R. gave this direction a constitutional justification. Though his document was criticized as ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”bahubhutaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢, no one ventured to expunge it, on the contrary they reinforced it. All presidents paid lip service to the Western democratic model, but ruled on authoritarian principles. With Mahinda this tendency has reached its apogee, perhaps with even more to come. Yet he will remain unassailable, for isnƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t he the modern version of Duttu Gemunu? I recall Lee Kuan Yew praising Suharto the dictator, because he gave stability to the region. Call Mahinda a dictator or similar. Accuse him of excesses Yet he brought stability to the country, the precondition for its progress.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Those countries which compare their democracy with ours are groping up the wrong tree. No democracy is the end-point of a nationƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s development and history. It is like a clothing which is constantly renewable as and when the growing or deteriorating body demands. It is an ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”in and outƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ factor. Sure it is a model, but never a final achievement. So is our democracy; a garment which is adjusting itself to the proportions of the national ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”bodyƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢. This, Mahinda has understood. His rule, more so than that of the others who preceded him, is similar to the tip of an iceberg moving the willing mass below. His historic victory over the enemy that threatened our national identity has earned for him an unprecedented moral right and a ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”carte blancheƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ given by the masses. These masses are hardly worried about the WestƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s idea of democracy, of human rights and such. These are hardly issues that come within their purview. They trust in him for a brighter future. This makes them live and cling to him as to their saviour. Mahinda gave them space to dream, and he is part of their dream. Debates, discussions, criticisms emanate from heads enveloped in the clouds. The masses are on the other hand firmly on all fours gripping the hard ground of Mother Lanka which has been freed once and for all for them to tread on without fear. There is nothing anyone else can now do, but move along and go the whole way the tip of the ice berg is taking them.

3 Responses to “Now, let’s go the whole way…”

  1. Kit Athul Says:

    Mario, excellent article. Let’s start a boycott of INDIAN made goods. I do not live in Sri Lanka and I am old, but you can start this at grass roots. Next amendment will null the Rajiv Gandhi 13th amendment. When this happens Tamil Nadu Tamils will go banans. Naupama Rao cow will poo poo in her pants. My prediction is India will start to disintegrate in 2012. This is because their putting too much on Tamil Nadu issues and very little on other states. If this happens Tamil Nadu Tamils are going to attack northern province. India will break into two countries North India and South India.

  2. Kit Athul Says:

    Mihinda has expanded on the foundation that J.R. Jayawardena created. Mrs. Bandaranayake did away with the senate and that led to JR creating this great constitution with the executive presidency, which by the way is elected by the people. INDIAN PUNKS do not understand this because their Prime Minister is NOT elected by the people. Why some people call it BAHUBOOTHA costitution, because only now, an average Sinhala can see fruits of this constitution. It was created to put SINHALA to rule the country with all the minority rights to the minorities. This BAHUBOOTHA part surfaced because to an avrage Sinhala, up to now; he could not visualize that, a part of the country was ruled by a KING. MUDISOODA MANNAN (UNCROWNED KING) REF: Chidambaram. The Air Line pilot, Rajiv Gandhi wanted to make sure the SL constitution will fail and he can then annex SL to Tamil Nadu and create the Greater Tamil Nadu. Well, Well, Mahinda from RUHUNA like King DUTUGAMUNU took care of it.

  3. Janak Says:

    How very interesting that Kit Atul wants to emphasise to the forum that he does not live in Sri Lanka or read the Daily News

    Is that because he writes to it?

    who ar ewe trying to kid here?

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