Mr President – Lead from the front!
Posted on August 20th, 2021

Ratanapala

20 Aug 2021

The President was elected by the people – 69 lakhs of them! It is true that his candidature was spearheaded by  Pohottuwa but  he is not the leader of this political party. He is  the leader chosen by a majority of Sri Lanka voters to be their President. At the inaugural ceremony, he promised to be the President of all Sri Lankans. It is time President took the people into his confidence and come out of virtual ‘hiding’ in the Presidential Secretariat! President should lead from the front and inspire the people and give them confidence.

It is time the President explained to the people directly and at regular intervals the main goals of his presidency, what has been achieved, what he aims to achieve and what are the difficulties he is facing and so on in simple terms. He should outline the successes so far from the time Covid-19 appeared in Sri Lanka. There are many successes. These must be highlighted lest they forget. At the moment, there is a severe gap in communications from the office of the President in that it is not entirely clear the way the government machinery is progressing. The Opposition accusations and taunting are left with no response which carries the government position or stand on them. It is the President’s sole job to mobilize all his supporters to support his initiatives and not let his support base wither away at the hands of the likes of political failures such as the JVP and the Kuhaka Jana Balawegaya. The JVP who could only obtain 3 seats at the last parliamentary elections should not be allowed to destabilize the nation with their sloganeering and protests.  At the moment they  are sounding as if they are the main opposition threatening to overthrow the government by bringing people on to the streets!

What the people see is that the President and his government are firefighting with no clear strategy. This is the time to show leadership from the front. In New Zealand the Prime Minister address the people almost on a daily basis. This is how she has won the confidence not only of the people, but also of the Opposition in manner of speaking. The President and the Pohottuwa has nearly 2/3 majority in parliament and the 20th Amendment to boot. Most of the time what is required is only a simple majority in the parliament. All this power must be used to pass legislature necessary to control the pandemic and all other manifestations that use the excuse of the pandemic to scuttle the government machinery. These should include laws to control street demonstrations and wrongful use of the media.  

People wanted discipline and a stern President. That is why Gotabhaya was elected as their President. The need of the hour too is the same – a sterner President and not one failing to do the right thing fearing the next election! Even at this late stage he should understand that micro managing is not a successful strategy. He should lay out broad policies and then hold subject Ministers responsible for the successful implementation of policy. Trying to decide how to have more hospital beds should be the job of the subject Minister or Ministers! They should be held responsible for the successful implementation of their portfolios.

President passed the first wave and second wave of the pandemic with flying colors. The third – the New Year wave was a grave mistake if looked at the situation in isolation. All over the world, governments have come to the conclusion that countries have to be opened up and live with the virus as the situations permit and demand. The only long-term solution is to achieve herd immunity through successful vaccinations AND newer and newer vaccines to curtain the ever growing list of the new variants. The economies must be revived while the virus is still around in order to keep the people fed and nourished. For this the machinery of the government and private sectors should be kept turning! So far President’s island wide vaccination drive is a huge success thanks to the indefatigable health services and the armed forces.

It is far better to face Geneva than to get a Nobel Price after saving the nation and her economy. This is the stuff that history remembers! The war against Corvid-19 should not be carried out with the next election in mind. People wanted discipline and a stern President. That is why Gotabhaya was elected as their President. The need of the hour too is the same – a sterner President and not one failing to do the right thing fearing the next election!

THE OPPOSITION LAUNDROMAT – KUHAKA JANA BALAWEGAYA

The sole intention of the Opposition Laundromat led by Kuhaka ( Samagi) Jana Bala Wegaya and murderous JVPers is to disrupt all government measures to successfully sail through the troubled waters of Covid-19 and the resultant Economic Crisis. They have no answers to what ails the economy but are intent on not allowing the government to make a success of it either. The contribution so far by the opposition is all negative, reprehensible and clearly not praiseworthy. Washing dirty linen in front of world diplomats is the depth of their depravity. The current Covid-19 situation is similar or worse in other countries. One just need to visit the following web site to see how the pandemic has affected the world.

https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/

WHERE THE PROMISES OF ‘THE VISTAS OF PROSPERITY ‘ STAND TODAY AND IF THEY HAVE TO BE MODIFIED TO SUIT THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC  SITUATION SHOULD BE TOLD TO THE PUBLIC TRUTHFULLY. THERE ARE MANY ACHIEVEMENTS INSPITE OF THE ADVERSE PANDEMIC SITUATION. CORRECT INFORMATION OF SUCCESSES AND FAILURES MUST BE TOLD UNDILUTED WITH REASONS FOR ANY FAILURES BY THE PRESIDENT HIMSELF.  THE NATION MUST BE TOLD THAT WHAT THEY RECEIVE FROM ONE END HAS TO BE PAID FROM THE OTHER END! THIS TRUTH MUST BE FLAGGED IN FRONT OF THE PEOPLE LEST THEY FORGET. HE HAS ONLY A FEW YEARS OF HIS FIRST TERM LEFT TO LAY A GOOD FOUNDATION FOR A SECOND TERM, A MUST IN THE CURRENT WORLD SITUATION. THIS IS NOT A TIME TO CHANGE THE LEADERSHIP. THE PRESIDENT NEEDS A WELL THOUGHTOUT,  UNAMBIGOUS  STRATEGY. FOR THIS HE MUST LEAD FROM THE FRONT, BE SEEN AND ADDRESS THE NATION MUCH MORE OFTEN THAN NOW  WITH A SMILE. SMILES BRING CONFIDENCE! HIS JOB SHOULD BE TO TAKE THE PEOPLE INTO HIS CONFIDENCE AND NOT LET THAT CONFIDENCE FALTER. THE ORIGINAL ENTHUSIASM OF THE NATION MUST BE REINSTATED. IF NECESSARY HE MUST BE ABLE TO MUSTER HIS FORCES TO COUNTER THE AGENT PROVOCATEURS ON THE STREETS.

IF THE NATION IS A SHIP, THEN THE PRESIDENT IS THE CAPTAIN OF THE SHIP AND THE PILOT RESPONSIBLE FOR SUCCESSFUL NAVIGATION THROUGH TROUBLED WATERS. IF THERE IS MUTINY ON THE SHIP, IT IS ALSO UPTO THE CAPTAIN OF THE SHIP TO QUELL THE MUTINY AND IF NECESSARY ‘KEEL HAUL’ A FEW TO BRING SANITY AMONG THE REST.

IT IS UP TO HIM TO INSTILL CONFIDENCE IN THE NATION AND TO STEER THROUGH WITH A FIRM HAND. AS LONG AS THIS IS NOT DONE, EVEN LITTLE AJITH ROHANA THE LEADER OF THE PHI ASSOCIATION LOOKS LIONIC, SOUNDS LIONIC AND MORE PRESIDENTIAL!

4 Responses to “Mr President – Lead from the front!”

  1. Sarath W Says:

    It was encouraging to hear the president’s speech as he on several occasions mentioned about himself making the important decisions. But the recent cabinet reshuffle was disappointing to note that he appointed the same old faces in different roles and a further promoted Namal Baby. Unfortunately that shows Mahinda is still in control and still has not learnt from the 2015 election disaster.

    Mahinda is now a spent force and put his son before the nation. The present must show who is in charge and stick to his vision. Before the election hi promised so much with the help of some highly regarded professionals, but have let down those people by appointing some uneducated. old and some corrupt people as ministers. Rajapaksas do not own the country and the president should get rid of some of them or he is going to suffer the same fate Mahinda did in 2015.

  2. Ratanapala Says:

    Mahinda and his Catholic family will ruin the Gotabhaya Presidency. He had a chance to go into the history books for having won the war against the terrorist LTTE. He ruined his chances, mainly because it was more important to please his Catholic wife and family than serving the country. Now he is busy trying to rob Gotabhaya of his chance at doing making a success of his presidency.

    Catholic Church is in tow asking for their pound of flesh regarding the Easter Sunday bombings while the Covid-19 pandemic is raging in the country. They are busy erecting Black Flags even while a curfew was in effect. This is clearly an effort to blacken the Gotabhaya presidency by the Catholic Church who are famous the world over for child abuse and related offences against humanity.

    At the same time the Easter Sunday Bombings are being investigated, the role of the Catholic Church during the LTTE terror days too should be investigated. Moreover, the Catholic Church should summon Dappula de LIvera one of their blue eyed Josephians and ask him to reveal the supposed coup behind the Easter Sunday attacks.

  3. NeelaMahaYoda Says:

    Ratanapala

    What nonsense you are talking about?. Gotabaya leading from the front?. To me, nobody is leading the struggle against Covid. People are feeling leaderless government, dying on the streets and corridors of hospitals due to lack of oxygen. Have you seen other leaders in the world daily coming in front of TV cameras giving moral assurance to the people that their governments will do whatever is necessary to save the people and lives?
    Unfortunately, until yesterday our foolish president has been telling the people that he will not go for a complete lockdown and he was more interested in saving the economy rather than saving lives.
    Ratnapala, is it not absurd for a president to say that? putting money over human lives.
    Because of a leaderless government, trade unions are coming out stronger than ruling politicians.
    Junior Hospital doctors are becoming experts on controlling the spread of virus and coming out with their pennyworth of pieces of advice.

  4. Ratanapala Says:

    Neela Maha Yoda,

    This is exactly what I am trying to drive home. At the moment per the politics of Sri Lanka, Gotabhaya is the only horse in the race. We cannot even think of changing horses mid race. Simply there is no other option, politically or constitutionally. We have to flog this horse to get what we can at the current time. This is why I say we have to get this ‘horse’ to run.This is why the President has to come out of the Presidential Secretariat and lead from the frontI

    In New Zealand the Prime Minister gives a press conference almost daily to reassure and instill confidence among the people that she will pull the country out of the current wave of the Corvid-19 Delta outbreak.

    Any meeting that has more than 10 people become divided and unproductive. He should learn to delegate this authority to a set of truthworthy ministers and hold them responsible. The oldies from Mahinda’s former administration has become a millstone around his neck. He doesn’t seem to have the courage to dislodge the ‘rolling stones’ and find his team of young turks to implement his vision.

    As per human lives, in warlike situations, it is impossible to avoid some colateral damage. ! It is very honorable to say that every life must be saved. At the moment people are dying of what is called Happy Hypoxia. They are hale and hearty one moment with no symptoms and grasping for breath and sick the next. How can such situations be anticipated is still a mystery.

    It is like the Second Law of Thermodynamics. You cannot get useful work without wasting some. Money is requried to keep the people supplied with their daily necessities. What does a complete lock down means. What about all those people who have to keep the wheels of the government / nation turning – the port, the customs, the utilities sectors, the agriculture, the hospitals etc etc.

    We have to support the President when the alternatives are simply unthinkable. So far his work on getting the nation vaccinated is the envy of the world. New Zealand with much stammering only passed the One Million (First Dose)rVaccinated mark only today! Sri Lanka has passed 12 Million!

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