Sunday, March 23, 2014

The VOTER – make your vote count! It really can make a difference to you and Sri Lanka

5.5M go to the polls in the Western and Southern Provinces on Saturday the 29th of March 2014. 

I believe they will be voting in 155 Provincial Councilors and included in that would be two Chief Ministers.  The election HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH PROVINCIAL COUNCILS and ALL TO DO WITH CONFIDENCE in the Government (GOSL) These two provinces account for 45% of the GNP of Sri Lanka and the wealthiest people in the nation call this area their home.

With 4 principal parties, my contention is that a vote for the JVP is a wasted vote, because, though they have been around a while, and had a greater say in the past, despite their youthful, and sensible leader, their policies WILL NOT WORK in modern Sri Lanka, where politics of efficiency and productivity, is only about management of human greed, and not extolling the virtues of altruism.

Then comes this fly by night ‘Democratic Party’ of General Fonseka. One must be off their heads to back a party, whose leader is not a politically astute person, but a former military commander who defeated the LTTE with his tactics of ruthlessness, the only means by which a ruthless, terrorists outfit could be effectively annihilated. There is NO point thanking him by your vote, it should have been happy retirement with a big pension and perks, both of which have been denied him as well as his voting rights. Why vote for his party? Will it survive his demise? What can they really do if they get into power, except for killing by firing squad, all those who oppose them! So please think again about even an inkling of a desire to waste your vote thus.

Then we come to the UPFA ruling coalition. There are 16 parties, with huge internal problems of UNITY, only disguised by their lust for power, that they don’t air their dirty linen in public. We know in private they are anything but a set of happy campers, merely pretending, so that they can squeeze what they can from the people to live in clover! A hope they have of perpetuity. If one wants to endorse the status quo where they wish the Country to be robbed blind, because of ignorance of how many unsolicited projects are permitted, approved and financed, then there is no option but to endorse the GOSL. The latter’s campaign is a single issue campaign based on the Geneva HR threats, as an infringement on the sovereignty of the state, no matter how much the GOSL has infringed on liberty and freedom of the people to express their disgust openly, and without fear.   

Dear Mr and Ms Voter if you dislike any of the above, then you have NO option but to give your precious vote to the Elephant. This party through its many forms, from the National Congress days has survived for over 100 years and will be here another 100 years hence, and even in crisis is the largest party in the Country.

Do not concentrate on the infighting in the party, as that is NORMAL in a party of this magnitude that has been out of power for so long. It would happen to any elephant! There is a lot of potential, and if the elections prove that the tide has turned and the people finally realize that they have been taken for a ride, then the funds, people, brains and talent from all parts of the world will flow to form an effective significant opposition first and shortly thereafter a Government which will be tasked to clean up the mess, that the creators of the mess, wallowing in it cannot distinguish.

Despite the lack of political cunning of the leader of the UNP, NONE can accuse him of personally benefiting from politics. Not even his severest critics. That is therefore a start, that we may have some confidence that decisions will be taken in the interests of Sri Lanka first before self, and that would save thousands of billions at a brush stroke all accruing directly to the people of Sri Lanka, who would finally reap the peace dividend denied for so long, and in fact stolen from them.

One factual exercise that has already been done, is that on first year of a UNP government, they can reduce the interest on the International Debt, by Rs 200B per annum instantly and a good chance that within a year from rescheduling and exposing usuary, reduce it by a further Rs200B per annum within the first twelve months. That is a good start, and exposes the depths of corruption that our lenders and borrowers alike have engaged in at the expense of the nation. 

Please remember we are currently unable to debt service, as we borrow to pay the interest, if that means anything to you!!    
I personally appeal to the voter to go and vote. Staying at home and not using one’s franchise is NOT being a citizen of Sri Lanka. One may as well take the next boat to China. If one goes to the polling station and dislikes the choices on offer, it is quite acceptable to SPOIL one’s vote saying NONE OF THE ABOVE!!!!

In this way, as who governs affects our daily lives directly unlike in most other countries, it is essential that one’s preferences are known.

May I remind the voter that one can just cast one’s vote for a party and NOT give any preferences. The problem is that someone else may misuse your ballot paper after the party count is taken and give a preference to someone you may dislike!

Either way, please vote early so no one uses your vote by deception. Your vote is important no matter who you vote for. Your ignorance is permitted. We are not perfect and ignorance is universal to all, no matter what form of Government.                 

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