Thursday, July 12, 2012

Ruwan Wijewardene MP – the Star batted for Education all the way

MP Ruwan Wijewardene was the only one of the MPs panel at the concluding session of the Sri Lanka Economic Summit 2012, today, to elicit instant applause from the audience. He stole the show unequivocally when as the final round, at the end of the session, Mano Tittawella the moderator asked all the panelists what would be the first thing they would do if they were given the chance to rule, and the first response was asked from Ruwan, who said without hesitation, “Education, Education and Education.”

His earlier position was that Sri Lanka must develop her ‘Human Capital’ if she is to be able to position herself in the Global Economy, as that is the country’s strength, but it has to be done immediately as the population will start declining, and the youth of the future would be burdened by the weight of looking after the elderly in addition to their competitive knowledge. We must educate our youth to meet the challenges in fields that are in demand and he stressed the need of a link language of English that was a basic requirement if we are to send our people overseas to provide short term services to the rest of the world.

He also noted that he was ashamed of being an MP to the extent that it has been elected representatives who have been accused of crimes including but not limited to murder and rape, especially of underage girls. He noted that these government PS chairman and members were not suspended pending enquiry as others such as policemen are subjected to when interdicted.

Minister Naveen Dissanayake for the Government side, meekly tried to say that until they are convicted there is no case, and that they had not been convicted yet. He is so off base as one does not have to wait for conviction, which under the speed of Sri Lanka legal system can last as long as 10 years and the accused is still conducting Pradeshiya Sabha meetings while in remand! The Govt. should have at least suspended him from office until the inquiries were over. It does appear that even the murderer will not receive justice as plans are afoot to quietly release them through the back door courtesy of the “Maharajanani”. Naveen had earlier cited the lengthening of the sentence on young Jayamaha who had been convicted of murder in a 2006 killing, and had only been given a 12 year sentence by the High Court which yesterday on appeal at the Appeal Court resulted in a death sentence. Naveen used this as an example of the great working of the justice system in Sri Lanka. A poor selection if ever there was one!!
Getting back to MP Ruwan stressing the need for Education over any other, one must consider that only when our population is educated will they be able to make informed choices. Currently the uneducated citizenry vote for irrational reason or for being unable to evaluate truth from lies of what they see on the Government TV channels and the Media. The fact that Media is stifled and effectively censored where journalists use self restraint for fear of attack and intimidation and god forbid, white vans and death!

Further only when our population is educated will they be able to value education in our elected representatives and dump the goons out of office.

Only education will enhance the knowledge economy, where our citizens will make choices that are best for them, and do not have to rely on uneducated people telling them what to do and how to improve their lives.

Only education will ensure that people will be able to see through politicians and determine who are the true patriots? and who are the wolves in Sheep’s clothing?

Only education will remove the grip the politicians have on people, where the populace is enslaved by them for a job or other favor, and thereby deprive the economy of productive workforce.

Only education will be able to remove a dictatorship, because the voter will be able to judge who should lead them and why, not just base it on rhetoric, but on sound judgment, comment, evaluation and example.

Only education will ensure we have a workforce ready to face the Global Economy head on and have the skills to fill the jobs in demand wherever they may be.

Only education will be able to improve the quality of life of our people, as they will be able to choose the employment best suited for their skills, and these skills will be used in the most productive mix to first enhance the value and income of the person and secondly that of the state which will get a return on investment, that is a multiple times more than the wasteful investments currently carried out.

Education will enable the country to maximize its growth rate, using its most important skill, and asset its Human Capital. Thanks Ruwan for the answer!!

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