Saturday, May 24, 2014

No confidence motions against the Government – under what pretext?

Generally, no confidence motions are taken up on a major matter, where the opposition believes they can garner sufficient support from Govt. members to win the motion and then force the Govt. to resign, as a means to request for a new election, and hopefully a change of government. That was the system practiced in Sri Lanka before the new Constitution of May 1972, and seemed to work well, when matters of national interest sparked Parliamentarians to vote their conscience.

However today, where people spend money to get into Parliament, they certainly don’t want an election before their time, and before they have made enough money in the present parliament both to contest the next, and keep enough in reserve for their families for Generations to come! It is this control that the Presidential system affords that keeps MP’s as nothing more than obeying dogs, if they are in government who are ONLY fed if they behave, and eliminated at the first sign of betrayal.

It is in this context that we must view the UNP decision to hold a no-confidence motion, on the grounds that the Country is being ridden with drugs, becoming one of the main transshipment points in the drug trade to boot, and drug dealers as top parliamentarians!

If this motion had NO chance of it being passed, then why was it brought? If it was to publicize the drug issue as being of sufficient national importance that a secret ballot be permitted and MPs allowed to vote freely, then agitation for an independent vote nationwide SHOULD have been done as part of the pre planning for this as the request for the motion was put in May 2014, and there was sufficient time to plan a national campaign of agitation against the proliferation and abuse of hard drug use in Sri Lanka.

It is the duty of the opposition to bring ALL acts of lawlessness, and complicity of the Govt. in all crime to the public’s attention, so the public is able to make up their mind on how they feel. It is also a fact that they (the public) appear to endorse illegality on the part of the Govt. as long as it does not affect them personally and when it does they are the isolated ones affected, and so no one else gives a damn about their plight!

In a society where the level of public integrity has sunk where people honestly cannot distinguish right from wrong, and where parliament is replete with criminals, why go for silly motions, that are lost on the public and media alike?

Thursday, May 22, 2014

The death in Police custody of 17yr young Sandun Mallinga on May 9 2014

I have alluded at length in my blog to how common Police brutality has become in Sri Lanka, and how it has not lessened during this regime despite the better Police Education on the responsibility of Policeman and their likelihood of prosecution and severe punishment if found guilty of brutality.

What is surprising is that along with killings of persons accused of crime, whilst in police custody, with the standard and always used phrase, “killed by the police while attempting to return fire or throwing a bomb, whilst the suspect was taken to show the police, where the weapons were hidden.”

All this amounts to extra-judicial killings, and in the end there is very little accountability. The police arrested after the Angulana Police station killings have also been arrested and tried, and found guilty, but this does not seem to have reduced the extent of this mal practice and gross violation of human rights.

I deduce from this that, the Police believe and have been reinforced by the Force and superiors that they will be cleared if arrested, so they continue their previous practice.

I cannot understand why in this particular case even the Magistrate in light of evidence and pleas from parents did not release this young man (technically not an adult) In that sense this lady magistrate is equally complicit in the death, but has NOT been arrested for the dereliction of her duty, as that is probably not a punishable offence! Presumably because it would cause a furor amongst magistrates who will refuse to hear cases!

All this amounts to a very sorry series of actions on the part of the police who are supposed to protect the citizens from crime and instead become the perpetrators of the most heinous of crimes, using their powers to inflict mortal wounds on innocents, as bad a crime as LTTE ones.

Is there a sense of pride in the police department or a sick sense of masochism? I think the latter is more likely and must be stopped if we are to make any more progress from actions that have been roundly proscribed by international treaties.

This kind of behavior leads us to question the statements made by the Govt. as it concerns Human Rights, as we just do not have any faith in what is said. We must therefore question the right of the present regime’s legitimacy to Govern.       
For links from web sites relating to this particular event are shown below:

Some of the comments in the Colombo Telegraph (blocked by the GOSL) so one has to access through proxy servers, are interesting.

Let us all work on really stopping this practice, and NOT place lip service and assurances from the GOSL that these are merely isolated incidents that get punished with the full force of the law.

There is nothing that can come close to a satisfactory resolution for the parents of the child, but I hope that justice will prevail and an example made so that these incident DO NOT occur in the future. At least then we can say we made an attempt at positive change for the better in Sri Lanka.  

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Finally IT APPEARS that some sanity will prevail!

I have been critical in this blog about misuse of statistics and errors in their compilation from Internationally accepted norms. Recently an eminent economist Dr. Anila Dias Bandaranayake  (a former assistant Governor of the Central Bank and Director of Statistics there)  also recommend that the depart of Census and Statistics be Independent of the Ministry of Finance under which it currently is. If there is anyone who knows what she is talking about it would be her, and it is wise to accept her conclusions as being reliable.

SO I must express my surprise at the article I read today in the link below of the intention to change our system of calculating GDP to conform to internationally accepted norms.

I would like the reader to be skeptical about what they believe, by rationalizing the agendas of the various organizations that make their reports and come to their own conclusions. I have always asked my readers NOT to believe what I say, but Kalpanakaranna and make up their own minds.

So why are we as a population so gullible in believing crap fed to them by a grossly irrational Government bent on making up stories to justify their existence, who have made a profession of fooling their citizens with stories so tall, that acceptance by the public especially those who should know better “the highly educated” fall into the trap set for them, and are used as mouthpieces to extol the virtues of some of these flawed statistics to add weight to the Govt’s disinformation campaign.

I have quoted instance where the information put out is patently inaccurate but that does seem to phase some of the people who believe no matter what!!!!

Time to take a time out and check oneself, and begin to ask yourself how much of what I read, hear and see in Sri Lanka is manufactured and what is accurate. If you go through your own rationalization, and come to your conclusions, you would realize the level of duplicity you have been suckered into for so long.

I urge our fellow citizens to take stock of what is happening in Sri Lanka today, and in the interests of our future, try and work out what is right and wrong!  

Sunday, May 11, 2014

How about a Post Mortem on the WCY2014? The only way to learn from our mistakes.

No international conference is perfect. Some are just better than others. It is important nevertheless for the Organizers of such a lavish and extravagant event, to justify to the Sri Lankan people that the money spent was indeed worth it, and if there were areas that could have been improved what were they?

I was not directly involved in this event, so I am commenting purely on the exchanges of conversations I had with those who participated, especially those who were our guests from overseas. Hence the observations are anecdotal and it is for the Organizers to completely refute my critical allegations.

Suffice to say that my two previous blog entries were very critical about the opening ceremony being held in Hambantota, and I will just finish that issue, simply by saying that at yesterday’s event where we hosted a group of Nepalese and Finland delegates at our Electorate, to show them some daily rituals and New Year Events, the delegates were laughing and also quite annoyed that their most unproductive time was the day wasted on the Hambantota event. They were in fact furious that their short time in Sri Lanka could not be better spent meeting people from Sri Lanka and exchanging their views. After all 9 delegates from Nepal represented 9 different Political Parties and their youth wings, and hence held a cross section of views themselves.

What they found really funny was the fact that they referred to Junior Rajapaksa (Namal) not being present despite being a VP of the Organizing Committee as being insulting, and worse was the fact that the Master of Ceremonies, spent a full three minutes singing his absent praises! Which was totally lost on them as he does not mean anything to the delegates of the WCY14, and hence were trivialized by this reference, which should have been excluded in the first place.

However does one believe that the post mortem will have the courage of their convictions to recommend the exclusion of unnecessary sycophancy in the future of any other international events in Sri Lanka? 

I was at the BMICH on Friday morning as my Boss, was a featured speaker at one of the events, and his speech was well received and delivered to the point, and in accordance with the subject matter on the brief supplied to him, and personal experience from his current political work was drawn out to give another perspective of the problems faced by youth who migrate from rural areas to urban locations in search of employment.
While we were seated at the VIP lounge, Mahinda Samarasinghe a Minister in the Govt. was also seated, and when he said he was in a plenary session talking about Governance issues, the irony was not lost on my Boss who pointed out how he would like to be a fly on the wall listening to him justifying his position under the present state of non-governance let alone lack of governance.

When questions were asked on Disabled, Gay and Transgender issues, one has to be careful in what is said as matters are taken completely out of context for reporting purposes, and thankfully I have the full video version of the events, in case of false innuendo!

Last evening from 4pm to late was spent in hosting the Nepal delegation at our Electorate. They really enjoyed the outing though I am sure they were exhausted at the end of it, needing to leave at dawn to catch a morning flight back home today.

We first took them to small temple, the Bodhi Pooja and meeting he priest who tied the Pirith Noola on them. This priest graciously hosted a tea party with cakes, fruit and juices also. Then we went to an Avurudhu Festival in part of the Electorate and they participated in the pass the hat musical chairs type game and the now universal tug-of- war competition.

We then took them to a big temple, which no doubt looked impressive and well funded in a large ground, showing the stark contrast between different Buddhist temples. I am sure the irony of empire building in Temples was not lost on the guests. We then hosted them to a string hopper dinner. I don’t know why we felt we needed to serve beer to them, and strong beer at that, but I guess that was what was available in the vicinity. 

Finally we took them to a Musical, which has now become part of any festival in Sri Lanka where people spend a lot of money for singers, bands, lighting and stages, with none costing less than Rs500K! Even a song had been written especially for them before sending them back to their Colombo Hotel exhausted and a few hours late.

The time with us, and the youth from the Electorate was probably the highlight of their visit, and NOT part of the conference proper. This says a lot for those who just came for the conference, as the events were not sufficiently unique to garner the interest of youth who are always looking for NEW experiences, which was probably lost on the Organizers who actually are NOT youth!!               

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

There were no pictures of the 3000 children who were standing in Costume from 9.30 to 12.30 yesterday in Hambantota (censored)

One of the obscenely senseless Organizational faux pas of the WCY14 opening ceremony in Hambantota yesterday, was the fact that 3000 school children lined up the approach road from the main road to the Convention Center dressed in various outfits from 9.30am to 12.30 for the guests to see!

They are not circus animals surely! Anyway these kids some of whom had been up from 5am and been taken from home to where their makeup and outfits had been put on them, and then bused into the venue to be standing for 3 hours was an uncalled for violation of their rights, and respect.

Whoever was in charge of planning such an unforgivable aspect must suffer the same ignominy and understand why so many of these kids fainted as they were NOT allowed to even sit down. As I mentioned in my blog, we have some mentally deficient deviants who are tasked with organizing events to show off to their superiors so much so that when the VVIPs and President turned up, they were driven right up to the red carpet not being able to see these kids, permanently striking out the reason for their presence in the first place.

In true Sri Lanka fashion the planned for start at 11.30 turned into 12.30 as some of the buses with guests began arriving only after the President arrived at 12.15! This meant that the journey took longer than anticipated.

Further after obligatory photo op and the lunch, when the delegates left at 3, they were not taken in a tour of Hambantota, as there was NOTHING to see in that wilderness, but taken to a beach party on Polhena Beach in Matara, laid on my CSN, (which no doubt would have been paid an obscene amount to organize that) and then late in the night driven back dog tired back to their hotels in Colombo, with some arriving after midnight.

Of course none of this would be in the news. One reason being that only the 5 Press of the President was allowed inside the Conference Hall, which had plenty of room to house over 100 press men. All the others had to watch on TV and send their reports from the press room. That is why only the good photos are from outside the Hall and the bad ones are from inside, the canned ones for public consumption. I hope at the least the delegates can send their smart phone photos for us to enjoy some of the real show!

I repeat it is NOT sour grapes on my part, just that no one knows the real story.

I am determined to find a photo of these poor kids from one our international friends and post it in a day or two give me a little leeway. If you have one let me know.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The only place on earth where Delegates have to travel 225Km from Hotels to the Conference Hall!!! TODAY – Sri Lanka

The inauguration of the World Conference on Youth 2014 at Magam Ruhunapura (aka Mahinda Rajapaksa) International Conference Hall, Hambantota, will take place later this morning at 11.30am.

Who is organizing this event? Those who go in convoys and cavalcades with security shooing (or is it shooting) all mortals and animals out of the way killing anything or anyone that gets in the way, or those who come to work in crowded buses, wreaking of sweat after a heavy work out holding onto dear life whilst the bus sways and avoids traffic and then jerks up to a halt to pick and drop of a passenger?   

The 1500 delegates representing at the latest count 94 Countries and the Govt. insisting it is 149 Countries , I have the Agenda, that says they leave the Hotels in Colombo in their coaches at 7.30am for the 11.30 am start.  

All the VVIPs, that is all Govt. henchmen, (my boss received an invitation to travel but politely declined, as the time and fuel consumed would not provide a return on investment!) will be travelling in fuel guzzling convoys that will result in the equivalent of 250,000km of vehicle travel to the “Venue” and back which amounts to 50,000 liters of fuel, costing a minimum of Rs8M to the Govt. to say nothing of the wear and tear of Billions of rupees of luxury vehicles and air-conditioned buses for the delegates.

The Govt. reckoning is that when Rs20M is allocated daily for the President’s expenses, this is really small change in the overall scheme of things, and so justified and justifiable as there is 125 KM of new Expressway to show off to these young impressionable foreigners, and imply that this land is dotted with expressways. The reality is that we have to clamber over potholed, and now mud-filled side roads to get home in the rain to our little homes! 

Don’t get me wrong. I think holding the International Youth Conference is a very good thing for Sri Lanka and especially our youth. It is ironic though that we who represent one of the largest Youth (Political) Organizations in Sri Lanka supply NO representation, except for the request for our Chairman to be at the opening and chair a plenary session in Colombo on Friday, the latter which he will fulfill as an important duty as a youth leader and young Parliamentarian. 
Getting back to my reasoning for this blog entry, as my blog is dedicated to

Therefore I believe we must be practical in doing things sensibly. Our guests would not be fooled into a false sense of reality if we held the whole conference in Colombo at the BMICH which is itself, completely refurbished and ideally located for a Conference of this nature.

To waste the valuable time of people from so many countries on a junket such as this, when time is precious at a short conference such as this, to waste a day of no productive sense is NOT justified. Actually it is just 4 speeches and the photo of Ministers that they are going for, as well as a 4 hour tour of the area in Hambantota, the latest tourist attraction in Sri Lanka fully equipped with re- enactments of the gun fight at the OK corral featuring the real life Mayor of Hambantota running amok with Toy Pistols in his hands.

Get real guys who are ruling us. Where have you just come from? Even Uruwarige Wanniya Aththo the Veddha Chief would not make such a foolish decision as he is extremely good at prioritizing his day.

We don’t want to be the laughing stock of the world, especially the future of the world represented by youth from all these countries! If there is a generation that cannot be fooled by theatrics it is the Young, so don’t insult their intelligence!

What is it that Hambantota has to offer a first time visitor with only 4 hours to spare on his schedule for sightseeing in all of Sri Lanka, to be shown around Hambantota? Surely not the white elephants!

The damage is done, as I write early this morning, the delegates are being driven in bus convoys from their hotels in teeming traffic to the Homagama entrance to the expressway, (the first 45 minutes, may go up to 90 minutes this morning unless the Police clear the way) that alone is something they will remember even more than the expressway ride as the latter is a common occurrence in most countries, which at speed does not allow time to appreciate the scenery. They will notice the convoys of VVIPs in their expensive vehicles speeding past them on the Expressway and wonder if these are all the bananas of the Banana Republic, as YOUTH have “A CLEAR IDEA OF THE CARBON FOOTPRINT” They most certainly will NOT be amused.

Monday, May 5, 2014

The proclivity of our leaders to be idiots beats the cake. – “We guarantee that there will NO youth uprising for the next 10 years.”

Today’s Daily Mirror reported that the Minister of Youth Affairs, who is principally involved with the organizing of the World Youth Conference in Sri Lanka beginning in Hambantota tomorrow, made the above asinine statement. 

In fact only intelligent observers will know it is a crass statement to make at any time, and most importantly now, when we are hosting a very important event as it concerns the Youth, and we as the Host Nation must make every attempt to put this country in the best light, so that our guests are able to get a good impression of our beautiful but tragic country, where we have been cursed by leaders elected by the people, who are forever preening themselves and being self indulgent at the expense of the populace of Sri Lanka.

In an environment, where we universally agree that our Education system needs a drastic change, we have uneducated Ministers of State making patronizing comments to suppress the enthusiasm of youth to be creative by making statements that are grossly inappropriate and condescending.

With a deterioration of education from the 1970, we have suppressed creativity, and imagination. In this manner, we have also suppressed independent opinion forming and critical thinking. We teach our young people to believe what is said, and NOT analyze the basis for statements. In this way young people are UNABLE to make decisions for themselves, as they are unable to judge right from wrong, and know when they are being cajoled into submission.

No wonder then, that apathy is the order of the day, because they are UNABLE to create an uprising for change for the better. Dulless Alahapperuma is completely confused, as he thinks uprisings are by definition violent. I know their Govt. lives by the sword, and they will die by the same means, but it does not mean that rational people must follow bankrupt concepts blindly.

It is the need of this Regime, NOT to educate its citizens and keep their creativity in checkm, so that they may survive in power to decimate the future to one of a Cretinous Republic. It is time the youth realize their potential and change the status quo for the better understanding the challenges they face.

It is better for someone not so young to shut up about what a young generation may or may not get up to, given a chance and a good education.