4th July, 2004 Volume 10, Issue 51
has fallen short of his role
Speaker's role in parliament is primarily that of conducting debates. In Sri
Lanka it seems that peaceful debates are a thing of the past. Therefore, the
Speaker falls short of his role, if he is unable to control unruly MPs -
mace or no mace. The current Speaker has the added burden of being a member
of the opposition and his very election created an uproar on the first day
of sittings of the 13th parliament which exposed the level of
competitiveness between the ruling party (parties) and the coalition
must be remembered by all concerned in parliament that they were elected to
represent the public and not their personal interests, likes and dislikes.
Only three months into the UPFA's term and they are already talking about
dissolution of parliament and a new general election!
opposition is hell-bent on toppling the government in much the same way the
SLFP and JVP did before they came into power. The public must insist on
competing politicians to personally pay the cost of general elections should
this government be toppled or call for elections, if they are unable to
conduct the business of governing this country
before their term of office expires.
Speaker dons the Speaker's robes because it gives added stature and dignity
to his position. Robes and uniforms were designed with this in mind. The
mace used to be a weapon but is now a symbol of authority of an official -
perhaps we should revert to its former use as a weapon, seeing that some MPs
are being injured by rowdy
parliamentarians who belong in ghettoes, not the illustrious house of
parliament, which we all used to respect.
troops needed to ensure peace is kept
has pointed out that since the signing of the MoU 11 shipments of
sophisticated arms and ammunition have been received by Pirapaharan. What
was our navy doing? How is it that it could not stop even one shipment? On
the other hand for two decades our defence forces combined have not been
able to put down the Eelam insurgents.
the circumstances, what a tragedy we asked the IPKF which came here to do
what our soldiers could not do, to go away before they could complete the
dirty work we entrusted to it. It was President Jayewardene who said that if
the IPKF had been allowed to stay here for three months more, it would have
annihilated the LTTE root and branch. It was Sirimavo Bandaranaike, who said
in parliament that sending away the IPKF prematurely was the most foolish
act of President Premadasa.
are even now faced with a dangerous situation. In spite of the MoU,
Pirapaharan is importing arms and ammunition, recruiting child soldiers and
engaged in other nefarious activities not for fun. He knows that the Sri
Lankan government will never allow him to remain permanently as president
cum prime minister of a 'de facto' Eelam.
in God, but tie your camel well," cautioned Prophet Mohamed. Let
Kumaratunga send Kadirgamar to each and every friendly foreign country to
sign a military pact so that we may get peace keeping forces from all over
the world if the fourth Eelam war starts - God forbid - to assist our
can send a contingent from the fourth largest army in the world to Sri Lanka
and Karuna can lead it on to Pirapaharan's bunker at Kilinochchi, as our
security forces have not been able to do so, so far, although a written
request has been made by the Indian government to extradite him as he is
charged as the first accused in the Rajiv Gandhi murder case.
reason for UPFA to crow about
UPFA is still crowing about the election victory even though the electorate
did not give them a working majority in parliament.
UPFA, an alliance of nine political parties with diverse policies and
political agendas and behaviour, which parties have changed their individual
party symbols, colours and policies, from time to time at the feet of
political expediency and opportunism, jointly fought against a single party,
the UNP, who faced the election with it's party colour and symbol unchanged,
under odds, with the entire state media indulging in propaganda against the
UNP. Hence it is not a victory that one can be proud of. The UPFA still has
to go begging for a parliamentary majority to keep itself in power.
JVP, the JHU and several other minority parties came into political
reckoning entirely due to the present election procedure. The system
prevents a dictatorship of the majority. It is, therefore, not proper to
change the system merely to accommodate a single individual to continue in
so called senior member of the alliance - the SLFP, having lost nearly 40 of
its stalwarts at the last election, if the present trend continues, is on
the way out. The next election in another year or two will have two
political parties in the fray - the UNP and JVP.
it is, the President and the SLFP should now get about keeping the promises
made at the hustings within the three month period announced at election
meetings by the President.
sordid past of JVP
incidents that occurred in parliament and the SJ campus are downright
pathetic and deplorable. This campus is the abode of depraved hooligans with
homicidal tendencies. This is the second homicide at this particulate
campus. The killers must definitely be sent to the gallows.
complete banning of politics in the campuses may bring about brutal
manslaughter and rowdyism.
of parliament behaved like third grade rowdies the other day. They had the
audacity to assault the bhikkhus. At this rate there may be killings in
whole world knows the gruesome, sordid past of the JVP whose hands are
smeared with the blood of countless innocent people including bhikkhus. The
tiger, even though it changes its habitat, its stripes will remain intact.
best place for the rowdy elements in parliament and the campuses is the
Pettah fish market where they can give full vent to their rowdyism.
inequalities and bind nation together
Sri Lanka the question of homeland has developed into a national crisis. The
reasons are many, but it is the politician who has to take the blame. Here
the question of homeland is being given a twist. The minority is probably
seeking a haven to protect its survival from the terrors that were unleashed
on them with state sponsorship on several occasions.
the state has conceded that error, and has made efforts to reconcile, but
for the minorities that reconciliation is not coming with full commitment,
as is evidenced in the constitution giving special place to language and
religion of the majority, who are represented in parliament more as the
rulers than equals.
those inequalities and impressions are removed from the statute books and
equality enforced, the minorities would be compelled by circumstances to
withdraw their stand. This is the only way to give credibility to the
intentions of the majority, which in turn will create an impact locally and
internationally, and permanently bind the nation into one entity.
this is not heeded the opportunists within the minorities, will use this
situation to create a statehood through the homeland concept. This will be
catastrophic for the minorities, the majority, and finally for posterity.
of 'white' cricketing supremacy
time has come when one should no longer suffer the slings and arrows of
outrageous behaviour on the part of the 'white' cricketing countries towards
the Asian and African countries. Look at the record.
Australia noticed a threat to their cricketing supremacy from a young Sri
Lankan bowler (Murali) they attempted to remove him from test cricket
through the likes of Hair and Emerson - two 'patriotic' umpires who did
their bit for Australia. Their PM too has done his bit for them. Indeed
that's not the whole story of 'white' cricketing infamy.
Sanath Jayasuriya and Romesh Kaluwitharana overturned the then classic
'white' strategy of 'getting one's eye in' during the first 15 overs in
ODI's (30 to 40 runs being about the norm!) and set about massacring the
first 15 overs to the tune of some 80 to 90 runs (remember the Australian
tour of '95/96?) and thus invented the 'pinch hitting' strategy that every
country tries to adopt today, there was a move by the 'white' countries
(Australia and England) to move the ICC to consider a change of the '15
I recollect they suggested reducing the 15 over segment to some 10 or so
and/or permitting during the first 15 overs fielders in the outfield! The
current limit on the 'bumper' (two per over) was the result of Anglo -
Australian funk of the battery of W/Indian pace squads of the '80s - 90s. It
is the same funk that the 'whites' have of Murali, and had of Sanath and
look at the ICC's behaviour/practice of nominating umpires for Sri Lankan
test matches. Many times our cricket boards have had to protest and call for
a change in the umpires panel. Whether due to ICC cussedness or whatever, it
seemed that it invariably nominated an umpire with whom we have had
another aspect of 'white' cricketing behaviour so far as Sri Lanka's cricket
vis-…-vis the 'white' countries is concerned. England refused to give us a
three - test series, even while we were almost the top dogs in the game
(1996-1998 or so) until much later in the day. Actually one felt that it was
we who should have refused to give England a test series (one test or three)
as we were much superior to them at the time. The tour itineraries were so
lopsided from our point of view that it seemed the 'white' hosts did build
in a 'tire them our before a test' strategy as part of a scheme to get the
better of us in the tests!
now the current Australian tour sees the hosts taking us on a tour of their
god-forsaken northern territories, Darwin etc! Why did we agree to this
downgrading of our national team? Was such debasement inflicted by Australia
on England and S. Africa, or even the Windies! We should have called off the
tour if Australia could not afford us the same privileges that it affords to
other ICC members.
vacancy in the Permanent Commission for Prevention of Bribery and
Corruption, piped in with so much fanfare not so long ago, remains unfilled
for over a year. What is the problem that the President cannot face? Are
there no men and women in this country, of ability, integrity and honesty?
Of course it is unlikely that some of them will do her bidding. The
statement that the Act itself needs amendment to be made more effective, is
laughable in the context of the facts hitherto enumerated. People are not
fools not to see through it.
Elections Commission is unable to function, and an ailing commissioner is
conducting elections under protest at great peril to his life, merely
because the President stubbornly refuses to approve the nomination the
Constitutional Council has carefully and responsibly chosen. Is she wanting
someone who will dance to her tune? The Constitutional Council just refuses.
Hooray! The press and people seem to have totally forgotten these two
issues. This letter is to awaken them from their drugged stupor. If
necessary, let them take to the streets and remain there till the President
prayers in Buddhism
The Sunday Leader of 13 June there is a picture titled "Monks pray for
divine intervention." A fair number of monks are seated on the Colombo
Town Hall grounds.
it is a divine intervention, it must come from a heavenly being. Divinity
belongs to a god. No mortal can aspire to that status or position.
does not recognise the existence of a creator god. Further, it is a
prayerless religion/ philosophy.
have many a prayer to invoke blessings and favours from their Almighty God.
I believe Muslims too offer prayers to their benevolent Allah.
come then the monks' acceptance of divinity in Buddhism?
Mundo gas available without delay
year Mundo gas was introduced to the market and it was a welcome relief to
many middle income category citizens as they were being fleeced by Shell gas
and Laugfs gas companies. But unfortunately since April, we are suffering
without Mundo gas, and we are unable to buy Shell or Laugfs gas as they do
not accept Mundo gas cylinders.
your esteemed journal we appeal to the relevant authorities to ensure that
Mundo gas is made freely available without further delay. If this cannot be
done, we appeal to the authorities to compel Shell and Laugfs gas companies
to accept the Mundo cylinders and give us gas until such time Mundo gas is
freely available. We hope that the Minister of Consumer Affairs will take
appropriate steps in this regard as all Mundo gas users are middle class
citizen who cannot afford to buy new cylinders.
history repeat itself?
February 1999, S.B. Dissanayake, then a confidant of Chandrika and a
minister in the government, made a statement regarding a new constitution
which was to be enacted, in effect through a constituent assembly. He
further said that parliament would be closed down and converted to a
constituent assembly, and the judiciary also will be closed down during this
perturbed by the latter statement the judges of the Supreme Court met and
requested the Chief Justice to initiate an inquiry as to whether the this
statement was defamatory of the judiciary. Consequently the matter was taken
up for inquiry on June 26, before a panel of three judges which included the
Chief Justice. The minister in a brief statement apologised for what he had
said and the Chief Justice discharged him after giving a simple piece of
advice. Will history repeat itself?
ask me to tell you her full name. I realised my ignorance about her name
only when I started to write this note just after I reached home from her 'Janaza.'
It is pathetic I couldn't see her face before the last rites, because I
wasn't a near relative. I met her last a couple of months ago when she was
back at home after a few weeks stay at the Gampaha base hospital. Naturally
she was a little bit upset about her physical condition at that time. But
she was strong as usual.
everybody who resides in Thihariya knew her. Some called her "Noory
Miss." I prefer to call her "Noory Teacher." She was a lady
who was full of kindness. She was a government school teacher. After
retirement from government service she lived at Hijra Mawatha with her
Gampaha District has been her educational territory. So many students
witnessed her unlimited dedication and devotion. 'Noor' or 'Noory' in Arabic
literally means 'bright' or 'brightness.' Who gave her this name I don't
know. Whoever it is, she lived up to her good name.
Saturday, April 3 her children had taken her to the Gampaha hospital again.
Since the medical advice they got was not so positive they had brought her
back home. The country was agog with the election atmosphere and the next
couple of days being holidays, the children had decided to keep her with
them until Tuesday which was the first working day of the new government.
everything ended on Sunday, April 4. Unbelievable? In the morning she passed
away and at 4 in the evening we prayed for her at the Masjid-ul-Raula in
front of the cortege.
treated her as my elder sister who supported and encouraged me on numerous
occasions. We missed a kind lady who was a sister, teacher, mother, aunty, a
grandmother and a good neighbour.
Noory Teacher, may Almighty Allah - ar Rahman ar Raheem shower His merciful
blessings on you.
Abdul Kareena Nandasena
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