Sri Lanka is Kota Uda – Standstill Gridlock says Gus Mathews

Email Note from Gus Mathews in London to Rajeewa Jayaweera in Lanka,  14 March 2019

Rajeewa, Thank you for your analysis.[1] You are absolutely correct that the main objective of the  coalition was to prevent a Mahinda Rajapakse  return to being President. RW [Ranil Wickremasinghe] had tried numerous times to be President and failed abysmally.  So with the aid of the Western countries he embarked on series of actions that would have a puppet President with him wielding executive power. He tried it with Sarath Fonseka with the understanding that once SF became President that he would surrender all his Presidential powers to RW. Unfortunately, it did not work that time despite the minorities voting for SF.

The second time around with the tacit aid of CBK and the Western powers[2] RW  managed to snare a disaffected My3 [Sirisena] into his grand plan. This time it worked. However, this union of RW and My3 was doomed from the start. Other than political philosophical differences, RW relied on the gratitude of My3 of RW elevating him to the position that My3 could have only dreamed about. If you recollect, during the heydays of the ‘yahapalanaya’ GoSL I predicted this union would not last.

Unfortunately, the corollary of RW’s appeasement to the UNHRC in the guise of Mangala Samaraweera is now unravelling with the President defending Sri Lanka with his representatives and RW appeasing the UNHRC with his representative.

What are the options available to the President? Is not ‘foreign affairs’ the sole prerogative of the President? Can he summon the RW appointee back to Colombo? Unfortunately, My3 fell to the underhand trickery of RW by promoting the 19th amendment that ran a coach and horses through the constitution and made it impossible to sack the Prime Minister or dissolve parliament for four and a half years.

What we have in Sri Lanka is a ‘lame duck’ President in continuous conflict with the Prime Minister – a situation that does not augur well for Sri Lanka’s standing in any International forum. Hence, the sooner a general election followed by a Presidential election seems the only way to overcome this imbroglio.

Sirisena in USA in 2013


Jayaweera, Rajeewa 2019Sri Lanka’s Laurel and Hardy Act in Geneva,” 13 March 2019,

Gamage, Daya 2019 How Washington Nurtured Maithripala Sirisena to serve its Ends,” 20 January 2019,

Gerald H. Peiris 2010 The Doctrine of Responsibility to Protect: Impulses, Implications and Impact,” 30 June 2010,  AND

Darshanie Ratnawalli 2018 “Utter Constitutional darkness in Sri Lanka. A Sunday Times Editorial falls prey,” 19 November 2018,

Darshanie Ratnawalli 2018 “The Dressing Down of the Century: President Sirisena’s Scathing Sermon to his Captive Cabinet,” 14 January 2019,

Roberts, Michael 2018 “Gridlock and Hocus-Pocus in Sri Lanka underwritten by Prejudice, Exclusion plus False News,” 25 November 2018,


[1] See Jayaweera 2019.

[2] Arguably, USA was instrumental in this process –having identified Sirisena and given him a prestigious scholarship to USA in 2013 as one step in the enticement (revealed by Daya Gamage 2019). CBK then became the vital kapurala in mediating Sirisena’s turncoat jump in late 2014. Apart from demonstrating Sirisena’s history of turncoat switches, the various moments in this history indicate how visceral personal enmities motivate unlikely political alliances and turn-arounds.

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, american imperialism, authoritarian regimes, centre-periphery relations, conspiracies, cultural transmission, disparagement, economic processes, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, life stories, patriotism, politIcal discourse, power politics, Rajapaksa regime, Responsibility to Protect or R2P, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, unusual people, vengeance, world events & processes

Leave a Reply