Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Typing - oh so simple but no one can do it! Those who are looking for jobs that is

I am inundated with calls, drop-ins and CVs sent via my Boss who receives so many each week on his work, for employment. However it appears that none of the above know what it takes to pick them in preference to others in the competition for employment.

In Sri Lanka unfortunately, the job seems to the seeker to be a God given right, and if a politico or a friend of the family cannot fix that, then there is something wrong with the individual who can help with finding employment for this “oh so darling offspring”. The real problem is with the offspring, who has NO clue how to go about getting this elusive job, and the simple things that can make a difference.

I am now aging, but my mother sent me in my school holidays, (I was at Boarding School in England and had a two to three month summer vacation when I returned home) to Sinnathurai’s School of Typing it was called, off Mile Post Avenue, Kollupitiya, for shorthand and typing classes, and for the life of me I never realized why! I just went. For a 14 year old amongst all these older women training to be secretaries I was quite out of place.

The long and short of it, I learned the basics of touch typing here, on these huge clunky typewriters and at the dawn of the internet, before high speed broadband in the days of Yahoo Messenger first version and “You’ve Got Mail” sounds over 15 years ago, in the USA, I perfected the art of typing at high speed, as I could chat with over 8 people at the same time on 8 different boxes on my PC in possibly 8 different Countries in the world, and in order to do this as conversation was all in typing then, without much effort automatically gave me the edge in speed typing. To Say nothing of Multitasking as the conversations were on diff subjects

My abiding regret is not learning to touch type in Sinhala, but in my desperation due to the lack of others who can, it may be the last thing I learn seriously,  so I can blog in Sinhala and use it in numerous areas of work here in Sri Lanka.

I gave this background above to show, that the ability to type in Sinhala or English and preferably both is almost a sure license in the job market that puts you to the top of the heap when it comes to being interviewed and getting the job too if other qualifications are similar.

I try to explain this to potential candidates I speak with all the time, and they fail to comprehend this importance. Funnily though our offices are desperately looking for Sinhala typists and in this case we are looking for those from our constituency, as it will not be politically correct to get from other areas, and despite the need for 4 people, we are still unable to find one who can.

Many come saying that they can type, and when tested show their true colors of believing that they can, when they just have no clue, and think typing is punching one letter at a time with their index finger!

So any of you who are looking for an entry level job typing various letters in Sinhala at speed for a Minister, and you are from Biyagama, please let me know and will test you out. To be politically correct I would face the wrath of the Party if you are not UNP! Damn!     

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The battle for redress, resolution and recompense

I am inundated with requests every day, from ex-servicemen who have suffered under the previous regime, who want their cases re-examined the requested redress immediately made to them. The follow up calls on status reports is unending.

If one did not understand the history, one would merely assume none of their grievances had any merit. However it is become quite apparent to me how callous the previous administration of the Rajapakses were to people who they believed rightly or wrongly not to be their supporters. These are to soldiers who fought and got injured in the course of their duty, something we would never believe if we did not know the truth. So much for protecting the forces, ex-servicemen that is just a myth.

Ironically this administration has already undertaken policy turnarounds that return the dignity of the forces the Rajapakses have destroyed with the imminent removal of 18,000 from cleaning duty, and construction work for UDA. Actually it is not any different to slave labor.

I digress from the point I am trying to make. Each of these hundreds of cases has to carefully examined, due to the possibility of a few where the bona fides need checking. The Ministry is overwhelmed with the volume of these requests, and the infrastructure is still of people of the old regime, to whom if these files are sent, will purposely sit on them, to discredit their superiors.

From what I know at present it is just the famous 10 that Sarath Fonseka intervened upon and had reinstated that have got their jobs and ranks back and there are thousands in the waiting list for similar reviews of their cases.

I trust that the new Commander of the Army, will (as he is one who has also received justice after being put out to pasture in Russia, as he was more senior to the retiring Commander) understand this pressing need, and ensure the sections under his command that look into each and every claim for unfair dismissal fairly, and come up with as speedy a resolution as possible in these cases. I also believe if there is a central depository for such claims that it is better rather than some who go via the elected Politicians, hoping for a speedier resolution that they practically cannot do except by breaking internal procedures, in much the same way that orders were issued by the previous regime, WITHOUT any recourse to justice or fair play. The sooner we depoliticize this process, the better it is for claimants to understand we no longer live in a world where only favorites rule, only the deserving instead. 

Monday, February 23, 2015

What can be done when all one receives are allegations of non-performance by the new Government, regarding the past regime's crimes?

I get hundreds of calls every day over a number of matters and I will just note here those merely relating to the speed with which people’s expectations are fulfilled. People who call me on this subject are generally dissatisfied as to the pace of change that has been promised.

So let us start with two sms I received today, from a person I have no idea, how he got my mobile number and who currently lives in Australia. I will give his mobile number to reply to if any of my readers wish to concur or proscribe the said frustration of the writer! +61 4204 84844

The one at crack of dawn this morning was:

“You guys are cowards. Just taking no action at all. It has been close to 55 days and major thugs are still freely roaming. Kudu Dumiya and Mahindananda and Wimal are laughing from their asses off. Shame on you all. If MR won the Presidential Election you all are counting bars right now. Be brave and show some guts and balls while you all have the power you gutless idiots. We worked tirelessly on FB and try to convince people to vote on you morons. See Arjuna’s brother , he still acts as if nothing has happened. List goes on!”  

The follow up a few hours later read as follows:

“Ponna aanduwa thawama nakath balanawa, loku hour allanna. Rate podi ekata eka neethiyak, loku ekata thawa neethiyak. Thuk nodakin”

This is just one example of a litany of similar calls, messages and letters I have received where people, the public are fed up that one of the main tenets of the 100 day plan, namely of bringing criminals to book are NOT going at pace especially in view of incontrovertible evidence to the contrary. The example used always is that anyone caught with some ganja is first taken first to the Police Station, beaten up, and then locked up before asking any questions, or being permitted even to obtain legal assistance. Whilst the big rogues are still roaming free, with NO serious attempt at investigation and prosecution.

Further the talk in the street are of deals being done behind the scenes, where big money (looted funds) are exchanging hands from one side to the other in exchange for limited or full immunity from prosecution, with intermediaries cashing in big time with personal financial gains for access to the elite in the new Administration.

These are serious allegations even if just figments of imagination, and it is very important the infant administration is able to nip these allegations and even set up a 24 hour investigating teams to speed up on investigation and prosecute the guilty.

It is very important that there are genuine attempts at clearing the air and a media show made to show that some of the big fish are treated like the common criminals they are, no matter they were recently in very high and powerful positions. We cannot as a country protect those who have put innocent peoples’ lives at risk, forced a flood of drugs, alcohol and other crimes on us from their lofty positions even using diplomatic immunity of VIPs to smuggle currency our and bring contraband in.

These were promises made which must be kept no matter what, and when the President who is not directly involved is able to point the finger at the Govt. there is none other than the PM who unfortunately has to shoulder this blame as the head of Govt. Even the loftier than thou personas such as Champika Ranawaka and the Ven. Athureliya Rathana Thero  are making the same allegations, to say nothing of the JVP success at cashing on this good fortune, as they were neither tagged with the past Regime and not with the present, especially as half the current Govt. is still accused with the past regime of NOT doing anything to reverse the allegations whilst they were in Govt. when in reality their consciences could have resulted in their resignation inspite of the threat of exposure if they had done wrong.

Is it because there are many in the present Govt. with a criminal allegation in the Bribery Commission that they do not wish to draw too much attention to themselves in this quest to clean the mess? I don’t have the answer, as I am just as frustrated as my colleagues in the same boat, who have to face the daily barrage of complaints we send upstairs, without apparent success.

I am willing to accept that there maybe actions taking place to which I am NOT privy to them, but which taken in totality is an attempt at making redress as promised. However it is important the public understand by proper publicity that ongoing investigations are taking place to give them what they expect and prove wrong.

Now no helicopters have emerged, no Lamborghinis have emerged, no tons of gold have been found, so there is a question of why? Has it been found and covered up, or was it not there in the first place, or have the crooks been able to hide this successfully that we have yet to trace the loot? Many questions no answers.