Prof. Asoka N.I. Ekanayaka
Nothing is more ludicrous and laughable than desperate government politicians who voted for the monstrous 20th amendment like Charitha Herath and Alahaperuma, now proposing that the Prime Minister and cabinet (but strangely not the President!) should resign with the formation of an all party coalition government of some kind in order to save the country. One wonders whether these men might fancy being in such a dubious interim administration.
How dare such failed politicians make such preposterous suggestions, who have themselves during the past two years been shameless lackeys of a corrupt and criminal family government that has ruined the country, and therefore bear collective responsibility for the current catastrophe? That they fall short of calling for the prompt resignation of a President who is hated by millions of protestors on the streets and regarded as the ‘villain of the piece’ is revealing. It shows that underlying such self serving suggestions by SLPP/SLFP politicians and their partners in government these past two years, is the desperate need to save their own political skins where millions of enraged protestors up and down the country are out for their blood.
The plain truth is that all the 160 MPs (156 voting for + 4 abstaining) who supported the abominable 20th amendment that contemptuously robbed the sovereignty of the people by giving tyrannical power to an ordinary soldier turned president, stand condemned for their part in the ruination of the country, the effects of which may last for generations. Along with the President and Prime Minister and a monumentally corrupt family oligarchy every one of the 160 MPs is guilty by association in the unforgivable crime of ruining the economy and pauperizing millions whose misery and suffering resulting in disease and premature death is incalculable.
That is why Sajith Premadasa the SJB leader is correct in declaring that his party is not agreeable to sitting in any coalition government with the members of the Rajapaksa family. Logically this prohibition must include refusing to sit in any interim administration with any of the 160 MPs who have been shameless lackeys of this Rajapaksa government these past 2 years upholding it in power and enjoying the manifold benefits thereof – blood sucking political leeches all, feeding off a moribund carcass of a super rich family oligarchy that has fattened itself on the wealth of a nation
That in the past 2-3 weeks many such MPs are in desperation posturing as independent groups, making a show of crossing over to the opposition, and pretending to distance themselves from the Rajapaksa family in a holier than thou attitude means nothing. It is a sham intended to deceive protestors and salvage something from a shattered political future. Like desperate rats leaving a sinking ship they are scurrying hither and thither in search of political lifeboats.
The bottom line is that those who have been part of the problem can never be part of the solution. The country is on the verge of revolution. Millions of furious protestors burning with anger see the coalition partners of the disastrous SLPP/SLFP government these past two years and all the 160 MPs who supported the monstrous 20th amendment as foul political excrement which needs to be flushed out of the system. They have no place in the future of this country. It is absurd to visualise any of them as members of any emergency interim administration after the President and Prime Minister resign or are thrown out. That would be to spit in the face of and further provoke millions who demand a clean break with the past and a system change.
In this impasse one can visualise only one emergency political expedient that might conceivably lower the temperature in the streets, give millions of enraged protestors a sense that their voice is being heard, help stabilise the economy, provide emergency relief to the worst affected, restore the confidence of creditors, evoke the compassion of the wider world, create a measure of civil peace and help mark time until conditions allow elections in say 12 months time. This would necessitate the following :
1. The President, PM and the government must concede failure and resign forthwith.T hat means all the MPs who have been part of this government during the past two years or have supported the 20th amendment in parliament stepping down from power immediately and quietly sitting on the sidelines devoid of any political aspirations until the next elections. Such a total abdication is vital. Nothing else will avail.
2. With the government having failed ( and in the democratic tradition), the opposition parties must be given the opportunity of forming an interim emergency minority government drawn exclusively from amongst the best people in the opposition. None of the 160 disgraced politicians of a failed government and hated by the people can play any part whatsoever in such an interim minority government. Nor must they block the urgent interventions of such an interim administration to steer the country away from disaster restore a modicum of stability and pave the way for elections. One can visualise an outstanding small cabinet of a dozen or more individuals drawn exclusively from amongst opposition parties who would on this basis deliver the goods, although I hesitate to mention names here. One can also imagine the euphoric dancing in the streets of a thankful relieved population that would accompany such a hopeful transition replacing the prevailing bitterness, anguish and depression.
One would imagine that the need for such a straightforward expedient as suggested above would be obvious if only democratic norms prevailed and those in power had a modicum of morality and common sense, or at least a healthy fear of the terrible wrath of an incensed population whom they have robbed ravaged and betrayed.
Such a course of events as suggested above will save Sri Lanka. But the first step must be the immediate unconditional resignation of the President, PM and entire government. If instead the latter want to play hardball with a bitter enraged increasingly impatient population, they and the whole of Sri Lanka will have to face the awful consequences.