Preamble: This article is prompted by the recent announcement that the Cabinet will soon consider a proposal to conduct Provincial Council (PC) elections without delay. The article is intended to urge that the PC system should be abolishedand replaced by constitutional devices to ensure: (a) genuine sharing of political power among all primordial, áscriptive and associational groups that constitute the nation of Sri Lanka; and (b) the statutory protection of Sri Lanka’s sovereignty and territorial integrity which the PC system, as long as it is permitted to last, will remain in dire peril. The article is also intended to stimulate the memory of those who appear to have forgotten the circumstances that culminated in the enactment of legislation in 1987 to establish PCs. There appears to prevail a measure of complacency among some of our present political stalwarts based on the notion that, with their two-thirds majority in parliament, and with the 20th Amendment in place, they ought to let the status quo remain intact. This, I think, is quite silly. Apart from the fact that landslide electoral victories tend often to be brittle, those who were in the forefront of empowering the present regime are already reacting with dismay to the decision to re-establish the PCs.
Tissa Vitarana, in Island, 29 July 2020, where the title runs “TNA has failed to come up with a realistic plan to address problems of the North-East people”
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has come out with its manifesto for the August 5 general election, and it is disheartening to see that the TNA has failed to come to grips with the new reality and introduce a realistic plan to address the problems facing the people of the North and the East, says LSSP leader, Professor Tissa Vitarana,
Prof. Vitarana has said in a media statement: “They have come out with the same set of demands that were raised by the TNA at the time the 30 year war of separation began. A news report of July 19 labeled it as a “low key event”, a clear indication of the lack of enthusiasm among the Tamil people.
DBS Jeyarajin Daily Mirror, 25 July 2020, where the title is “TNA Must Seek India’s Help To Protect 13th Amendment”
The TNA may glibly say that everything is hunky-dory with India but this is not so. The reality is that of the Indian establishment being extremely disappointed with the TNA over the northern provincial council issue
Nowadays, India is more interested in getting closer to the governments in power in Colombo. Therefore New Delhi would not let the “Tamil issue” spoil a potentially beneficial “new” relationship with Colombo.
Sri Lanka was embroiled in a three decade long civil war that left the Tamils a battered and shattered people. Instead of opting pragmatically for the “next best”, the Tamils chose to pursue what could be termed with the wisdom of hindsight, as a “far worse” one
Instead of day-dreaming about getting quasi-federalism through discussions with the Rajapaksa regime, the TNA needs to safeguard and consolidate what has been gained so far
Michael Roberts, reiterating the original draft sent to a few on 10 June 2020
Recent forum discussions on the topic of “Reconciliation” and correspondence with concerned friends have prompted me to essay an analysis of Sri Lanka’s societal problems over the last 150 years. This is a tendentious quest.
This Mapshowing districts served by Regional Malaria Officers happens to suit the metaphor “Riddled” and/or “Honeycombed” in my title
Rajeewa Jayaweera, in Island, 12 November 2019 … “A message to Tamil voters in the North”
German ‘Iron Chancellor’ Otto von Bismarck between 1862 and 1890 effectively first ruled Prussia and then a unified Germany. He famously said, “Politics is the art of the possible, the attainable — the art of the next best.”
The five-party Tamil coalition TNA, Tamil Maakal Mootni (TMK) led by former Northern governor CV Vigneswaran and Eelam People’s Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) fired a broadside recently. It consisted of 13 demands. They promised to rally the support of northern Tamil voters for any of the frontline Presidential candidates who agreed to make good their conditions.
In my readings of her past work, Shenali Waduge tended to go overboard in several of her claims, while also displaying one-sided Sinhala chauvinistic leanings in her assessments. But her recent article in Lankaweb, entitled “US in Sri Lanka since 2015 – turning Sri Lanka into a Neo-Colonial Military Base,” addresses a wide range of issues, including some that are looming over Sri Lanka today. It is also marked by considerable industry and embraces an extended sweep of time.
The TNA is facing an existential conundrum at this election. In 2015, they went all out to make the common candidate win and gave all kinds of unrealistic pledges to the Tamil people of the north and east as to what can be expected by making Maithripala Sirisena President. But after he was elected, the Tamil people got nothing of what was promised and instead lost even what they had in the form of all the work that the Rajapaksa government had done or were in the process of doing in the north and east. Understandably, the people of the area are holding the TNA responsible and between the parliamentary election of 2015 and the local government elections of 2018, the TNA’s votes in the Jaffna and Batticaloia districts went down drastically.
Shamindra Ferdinando’s rambling presentation of an Interview with Lord the Michael Naseby has produced some vital information about the creaking inner workings of the British government as well as the circumstances surrounding Lord Naseby’s interventions on behalf of Sri Lanka. Naseby’s assiduous effort to extract the reports sent by the British Defence Attache in Colombo in the year 2009, one Lt. Col. Gash, did not commence till November 2013 when David Cameron, the British PM, was about to head to Sri Lanka for the CHOGM conference – a visit where Cameron played the hero for the British public, the world HR lobbies and the Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora.
Dr. Rajasingham Narendran, in Sri Lanka Guardian, 7 February 2009, where the title is “Rise and Fall of the LTTE – An Overview” …. with highlighting emphasis being impositions by The Editor, Thuppahi
Sri Lankan armed forces have almost ended the capacity of the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) to engage in conventional war in the near future. They may also succeed in severely curtailing attempts by the LTTE to resort to sabotage, terrorism and socio-economic disruptions, subsequently. They have also recovered almost the entirety of the territory once held by the LTTE. These achievements, contrary to the expectations of many, have not only attracted the attention of the world, but also its implicit support. However, the plight of the 250,000 Tamil civilians, believed held by the LTTE in the jungles of Mullaitivu is weighing heavy on the world’s conscience. How the Sri Lankan government and armed forces will deal with the issue of these civilians, is being scrutinized closely by a concerned world and the Tamil-speaking people at large.
Edward Upali in Canada, via Email Memo to Thuppahi, September 2019**
In his opinion piece on the Presidential Stakes Jehan Perera (JP) evaluates three of the more likely candidates at the next Presidential Election in Sri Lanka (SL). However, I have some concerns relative to the criteria he uses to evaluate the prospective candidates. It is a common practice in Problem Solving, to use the same criteria to all alternatives and score them to choose the best solution. However, JP who claims to be a lawyer by training, appears to use several sets of criteria /attributes to evaluate three prospective Presidential Candidates.
Thuppahi's Blog · This web site presents the interventions of MICHAEL ROBERTS in the public realm with reference to Sri Lankan political affairs. It will embrace the politics of cricket as well. ROBERTS was educated at St. Aloysius College in Galle and the universities of Peradeniya and Oxford. He taught History at Peradeniya University and Anthropology at Adelaide university. He is now retired and lives in Adelaide.