guns to the fore
provincial council elections next month will see many new and
young faces joining Sri Lankan politics.
attorney at law Arjuna Sujeewa Senesinghe is one such person who
took to politics two months ago and is now contesting the
elections from Colombo District.
is a strong believer in
the United National Party's infrastructure and investment plan and
thus believes in improving the standard of living of the poor.
"I believe in sacrificing one percent of the development rate
to uplift the standards of the poor," said Senesinghe.
elected he hopes to develop housing for the poor, sanitation,
create more jobs for the youth and encourage more women to enter
is a strong believer in fighting for one's freedom. He was twice shot by
the police at the Jana Bala Mehumaya rally, which was held in July 2001
where he suffered from bullet injuries. This incident happened when he
tried to save a man who was injured.
to The Sunday Leader, he explained how he built his law practice after
graduating from Law College where he worked as a senior and a junior
lawyer, appearing for former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, Gamini
Athukorala, Karu Jayasuriya, Arumugam Thondaman and Rauf Hakeem, after
which he also got professionally involved in several UNP cases.
Senesinghe also appeared against several senior PA and Samasamaja
who recently appeared twice in the TV show Visanvadaya as an independent
lawyer, had prompted him to join politics.
is something which I never wanted to do," said Senesinghe.
"But after several UNP members and the former Prime Minister Ranil
Wickremesinghe invited me to contest in this election, I decided to
contest," he noted.
is a great admirer of several late and present leaders of the UNP such
as Gamini Dissanayake, Lalith Athulathmudali, J. R. Jayewardene, R.
Premadasa, Ranil Wickremesinghe and Gamini Athukorala. Commenting on the
politics in the country he said, "In the political scene I have
seen a lot of corruption in Sri Lanka. When I walk into the shanties
around Colombo, I realise how clean they are even though they live in
abject poverty. Their requests are for a tap, a toilet or a place to
bath," he stated.
believes that politicians usually get millions as commissions but do
nothing to uplift the living standards of these people. Hence if it can
be legally done these commissions should go into a trust.
a young politician who looks up to Ranil Wickremesinghe, Karu Jayasuriya
and Gamini Athukorala as examples, he stressed, "I would want to
make a change." He sees women's limited contribution to politics as
a major drawback as they have the ability to work hard and bring about a
less corrupt government.
also noted that the younger generation should be taught on more
practical avenues to be more creative and hard working.
UNP has far thinking plans with regard to infrastructure, foreign
investment and other basic facilities. "I do not need to do much in
professing this but to support them. The UNP did very well with a minus
1.5 and bringing this up to 5.8 economic development within two
he admitted: "UNP did one mistake by changing the concessionary
oriented programme - not giving any priority to the poor who don't wait
for the country to develop. They won't wait for sky scrapers, highways,
any other economic development, or what the stock market would do to
them. I believe in sacrificing one percent of the development rate to
uplift the standards of the poor, especially in housing," said
Senasinghe who is a great admirer of R. Premadasa's housing programme.
stated that the UPFA cannot play with the economy because they are
guided by the fiscal responsibility bill. "All their false promises
given to the people will come to light," he said pointing out that
the country is not going to get a single cent that the IMF and the World
Bank promised, which is the largest amount the country has got in the
having studied the policy plan of the country which would have brought
tremendous development programmes he said the people will soon realise
that the JVP and PA are at loggerheads.
are in no shape to maintain a government. The main issue was fertiliser
which they said that they will bring down the price but what they have
done is contradictory," he added.
price of mada pohara was raised by Rs. 250 which for an acre they have
to use three times as much as urea. So the farmer has to spend more than
what they spent when the UNP was in power," he explained.
"What the county needs in the future are: IT industry,
communications, infrastructure development, highways to bring it in par
with Singapore, and these can be achieved by 2015 if the UNP is elected
to power," he added.