The special statement delivered by Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing the nation on March 20 has been appreciated by many parties sparing political differences.
His statement was conveyed with much discipline and patience gaining confidence among the public as curfew was being imposed amid a health crisis. Every minute of his speech indicated the outstandingness of a professional in politics with an experience of over forty years in politics.
A common myth popular among the public on recent occasion was that the country's governance should be handed over to a professional, an intellectual who did not engage in politics given that all politicians are unsuccessful. It is quite humourous as those who value high of one's professional experience in being served in an area stand up for this myth.
Politics is a profession. Politics, like any other profession, needs training, skills and experience for successful implementation. There is a lot to learn in politics. One lacking the needful for engaging in politics accepts the state administration, they have to learn as the govern, or to learn while experimenting.
But given the current situation of Sri Lanka it is in no position to being administered by the hand of a trainee, which is why Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa's statement brings us to this important conversation.
The other myth is that the country needs a ruler who works but does not talk. A ruler is not all mighty god who creates anything as he plans and wishes alone. He consults advice from experts, meets people, learns their needs. A ruler connects his political experience with what he learns and comes up with solutions, have them done by deploying others. In order of doing so, he shall be having the capacity to deliver them in words before the targeted audience. If a ruler seeks the cooperation of the public, he shall be seeking it with words cognitive to the public. That would be his superiority of being a leader.
If one is not mastered in delivering speeches, he should train, consult experts' advice and avoid disclosing unnecessary information, but above all, should be capable of searching for individual who can prepare a speech for them appropriate for the moment. One who masters them all is called a ruler.
Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa's speech on Friday debunked the above two political myths. Only a mature politician can instill confidence in people when they are in a state of panic.