On the road to unity | Daily News

On the road to unity

Some say that the Lankan government emerged victorious in the war against Tamil rebels but failed to win the hearts and minds of the Tamil population; however the truth is that Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe tried to settle the issue without bloodshed but both Prabhakaran and Mahinda Rajapaksa together did not allow that to happen. Not long after the end of the war began the attack on the Muslims under the fascistic regime of Mahinda Rajapaksa. Revolutionary masses got together and defeated the fascistic regime expecting democracy and justice.

However the present yahapalana government has so far miserably failed in creating an environment facilitating co-existence for its minority citizens. This is an indictment on the President Maithripala Sirisena and the Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. ‘Both of them singularly and collectively lacked the political will to take affirmative action in the matter of race relations’, says one analyst.

The Prime Minister’s frequent emphasis on the drive towards development, luring foreign direct investors etc. is doomed without the national problem being adequately addressed. No foreign investor will be willing to park his funds in a country overshadowed by chronic national racial tension. Even the local investors are looking elsewhere. Insecurity of communal clashes is a major factor among all, which would remain a threat to stability and growth prospects of any economy.

Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR)

Ensuring law and order by ordering the police and military to a trouble spot is simply treating the symptom; not the solution to the fundamental problem faced by the country. What the country needs is a solution based on equality, autonomy and the right of self determination.

The creation of the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) and the establishment of a separate Ministry for National Integration and Reconciliation are steps in the right direction. The vision statement, “To build a strong integrated Sri Lankan Community whilst protecting socio-cultural value system ….” of the Ministry of National Integration and Reconciliation is indeed encouraging. So is the thematic focus of ONUR, “Build an inclusive society by promoting social integration. Support the healing process within communities. Bring youth and children to the forefront in building national unity and reconciliation.”

Then came, the bad news. The discussion to work together with the Mahinda group started within the SLFP led by the President; because of the desperation of President Sirisena to make the SLFP significant for the coming elections.

President wants to go out of politics with the honour of recreating SLFP as a party of the common man. This is a populist dream, connected to probably insufficient understanding of the degeneration of the SLFP, during the last few decades. They want to close their eyes to the blatant fascistic decadence in the party and wanted unity of all factions of the SLFP, to make it popular among rural masses and a strong election machine.

Hence, some of the SLFP Ministers were seen recently making desperate attempts to get a conciliatory word from the former President or anyone of his close subordinates. Minister Susil Premajayanth, who never really broke from the fascistic politics and has always been with Mahinda Rajapaksa even after he joined the Yahapalanaya Government, had recently gone to meet his former boss with reported blessings of President Sirisena, while the Parliamentary group of the Joint Opposition was in session.

It is nice to hear that his frantic efforts had gone down the drain. There were reports several weeks ago that Western Province Chief Minister Isuru Devapriya who is a close ally of President Sirisena had unsuccessfully approached leader of the Joint Opposition and the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna (MEP) Dinesh Gunawardena with a suggestion to contest the local polls jointly in their area, in the Colombo district; apparently without much success. On the other hand Minister Vijitha Wijayamuni Soysa has jubilantly declared that the SLFP would face the elections with Mahinda Rajapaksa and his gang.

His statement of course was ridiculed as it was Wijayamuni who once, soon after Mahinda Rajapaksa was defeated at the Presidential election, said that ‘his father’ is now dead hence he will pay respect but leave to do politics with living relations. Now he also had tried his hand in reconciliation with the same “deceased father”. The allegation that the SLFP led by President Sirisena’s attempts to delay the Local Government elections announced by the Election Commission to be held in January came because of hurried attempt to cook up a joint election front with the enemy who was accused of sinister political activities.

Mahinda faction and fascistic politics

However, Mahinda faction has developed their style of fascistic politics with racist pundits and bigoted intellectuals, and organised sections in many cities in the south. During the last few months they experimented with creating racist and anti-yahapalana violence. They are probably satisfied and that has made them to make up their minds to go solo at the forthcoming elections.

They appear to be firm in their demand that the SLFP group in the Government should sever links with the United National Party (UNP), if the two factions were to jointly face the polls. It is typical for a fascistic political leadership. This is a demand that will make the Maithri faction surrender completely. Many analysts say that it is impossible for the Maithri faction to meet this demand, as they know, that it would be suicidal for them, especially for the President, not only politically but also literally.

The President would be forced to grant some drastic concessions if this coalition with Mahinda faction will take place. Withdrawal of major legal actions taken against the leaders of the Joint Opposition, especially those against the members of the Rajapaksa family; in particular cases against Gotabhaya are on line. Such an event will be a blow to those reformists left and minority national organisations that still want to go along with the SLFP in the coming elections. Also, it will break the trust given by yahapalana to the minority nationalities; particularly to the Tamil national leaders.

Reconciliation between the two factions

According to reports, both the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the JO have appointed high-level representatives to hold talks in a bid to bring about reconciliation between the two factions, but former President Mahinda Rajapaksa has made some tough demands. Whatever happen, it appears highly improbable that President Maithripala Sirisena would agree to any move that severs links with the United National Party (UNP); So, no break-up of the National Unity Government.

After the general elections in August 2015, former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga worked out a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the UNP and the SLFP to work together to bring about national and religious reconciliation and build a peaceful, just and all-inclusive society.

Whatever the disputes over economic issues such as the Hambantota Port and the Trincomalee oil farm projects, the overall strategies outlined in the Vision 2025 sustainable economic development goals are far more important than any policy disputes to the liberals. Therefore, the two main parties sans fascism -working together for the first time since independence may continue. 


 

There is 1 Comment

Above group must work for the country not for themselves. If I remember right MR said after the do called war in 3009 there is no ethnicity we are all Srilankans. He is one like to be in power but he seems frustrated yes his thoughts and actions need repurifi ation and adjusted for all the country s needs. With collaboration with personal who put total country first

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