Mangala Samaraweera may be only a fashion designer but he was pretty serious when he in a FB posting said- Truth be told, the entire Rajapaksa family represents thuggery, corruption, deception and a flagrant disdain for democratic values and independent institutions. The “terminator” was chosen for a different reason: to terrify the media, police officers, judges and public servants with a simple message: cross us at your peril.
Yesterday , former President Mahinda Rajapaksa formerly announced the presidential candidate for his family’s new political party, the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP). It is his family party so he can decide who he wants as the Candidate. People expected him to be different. Instead the former president is happy to surrounded himself by men who robbed many million rupees of public money. His candidate is a man who believes in terrorizing the country. A man who is not worried about the the independence of the judiciary. They have shamelessly forgotten the disappearance of Prageeth Eknaligoda, the murder of Lasantha Wickrematunge or the abduction and torture of Keith Noyahr and countless other journalists. SLPP presidential candidate is a man who is on trial in two courts, one for corruption of over Rs 11 billion, and another for stealing over Rs 33 million in our taxpayer rupees to build a statue of his parents. The former President wants his brother to be president, he himself the prime minister, elder brother Speaker, another brother put in charge of the economy and his son put in place as his successor, that tells us what they stand for. Sri Lanka, its land and its people are destined to be the private property of the Rajapaksa family. How good can this be for our children in the name of security? While Gotabaya is credited for finishing the war. No government was willing to go that extra mile to decimate human beings in the name of war. Only Gotabaya was willing to do it. He did it in 1988 and ran away. All this was possible because LTTE was weakened in the East completely by the UNF government in 2002. Given a chance he will do it even better as a President.
Sadly, there are many Sri Lankans, whose hatred for Muslims and Tamils, push them to the vision of the Rajapaksa family of a hard line Buddhist state. Many of the sophisticated Sri Lankan people will become second class citizens in a Rajapaksa family dynasty, so long as Tamils, Muslims, Christians and others are forced to leave the shores of Sri Lanka. Others will support the Rajapaksas out of greed or power, or to escape prosecution for the sins of their past. These are the first people to sing hosanna to Gotabaya post yesterday.
We Sri Lankan people cannot vote for an alleged criminal whose very citizenship of this country is in question.The next president of Sri Lanka must be a Sri Lankan citizen, born in Sri Lanka who never ran away from this country or took citizenship in another land to evade prosecution. The next president of Sri Lanka must stand for democracy, safeguarding the judiciary, public service, promote economic well-being and other independent institutions and putting ordinary citizens before themselves.