Rampant borrowing was taking its toll on our fiscal stability and a One Billion Dollar Debt Interest instalment was looming, cometh January 2019.
Merry Christmas to all our readers!
It is a relief indeed that after 51 days of political jugglery, trickery and tom foolery, we are back on terra firma ; not that we are home and dry by any stretch of the imagination. Far from it; the dark, looming non prospects that have been lurking in the background in terms of a future for our sons and daughters are as ominous and bleak as ever. But one will have to concede, the hungry wolves have been beaten to the periphery, at least for now.
Normally it is after Christmas that we celebrate the coming of the Three Wisemen, the Three Kings or as some call them, the Magi, who visited infant Jesus, to adore and worship him. Yet for a change this time, for us Sri Lankans, the drama , or rather the farce, of the “Three Unwise Men” took stage well prior to Christmas. Yes, the Three Unwise Men, the Three idiots, the Three vicious, greedy, senile men, on whom the unfortunate men of this land has been destined to rely for their political future.
What a threesome they are! What a troika! Woe unto any land that has men as these three as their best on offer! Woe unto us who see no path without them. Woe to the political parties who can not shake off these voracious power leeches who never seem ready to let go of the reins.
How ready they were to gamble with the economy, stability, reputation of the country in that political chess game, adamant on checkmating each other and becoming King? Had one thought that one, at least one of them, better than the other two, prior to the curtain raiser of the pantomime on 26th October 2018, well, they were sadly and badly mistaken. Weren’t they?
To start with, the Rupee was in an abysmal downward spiral against a strengthening US Dollar. Rampant borrowing was taking its toll on our fiscal stability and a One Billion Dollar Debt Interest instalment was looming, cometh January 2019. All the promises of the 2015 January 08 change was evaporating fast in to thin air ,as the reality that the Sinhala speaking brand of thieves were now being ably substituted by English speaking ones sunk in. Yet , there was some hope; economically the target of becoming a major tourist attraction was getting a big boost with the recognition from ‘ the Lonely Planet’ , as the No. 01 Spot as a tourist location. Also on the offing was a 460 million Dollar mega grant from US, a rarity for a country beyond the threshold from a poor to a lower middle income country.
Then two of the three unwise men, got in to action and the entire political equilibrium was lost, casting the country in to unprecedented constitutional and political turmoil. Making short work of constitutional imperatives in regime change , throwing all the positives painstakingly gleaned over more than 3 ½ years , amid many setbacks and conjuring up shadows of authoritarian, despotic, racist and divisive modes of ruling right in to the middle of democratic governance.
At that time, the third Man, who, in the eyes of the moderate onlooker had been hard done by and backstabbed badly, seemed wise. In fact , in the see-saw dynamics of power struggle that took place in terms of judicial decision, parliamentary majority as well as the cross over game that ensued, he seemed most composed; didn’t budge an inch from the Temple Trees , as he had done many a time, albeit due to the persistence of his ardent followers and also did not allow his supporters to engage in a whirlwind of violence which could have ended in bloodshed. In short , he kept the tension and the suspense under a tight lid; sought legal recourse and used the civil society to the hilt putting pressure on the other two men. By that time the other two were looking really Unwise.
Well, then why do I say ‘Three Unwise Men’ instead of ‘Two’? , you may ask. Good point reader, but lack of incisive political vision on your part, I am afraid.
At Square One
When the thundering Verdict came from judicial heights that it was time to end the farce started by the ‘Two Unwise’ or in other words, the two scoundrels, and the third man was yet again installed , in the so heatedly contested seat, he could have said, ‘Shew, what riddance! Saved by a whisker!” and seen what led to the catastrophe in the first place. What made his seat so volatile, slippery and shaky, that he had to be picked up and posted there again , only by court order? He was at square one, yet again, but was it a signal to start from where he left? The gradually deflating, sliding and evaporating phenomena which was at his behest, that thing called Yahapalanaya, was actually nearing a very mournful but sure death, even before the moonlight coup on October 26. He was heading for monumental election defeat even if he had continued in to 2019. His party was struggling to garner the support of even its grass root level members , let alone the floating voter. No , he was not doing well; in fact he was a disaster.
In that sense, this was a blessing in disguise; the court order and the civil society voice , made him seen in a better light. A time to have a fresh start with a clean slate. He should have said, ‘Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa, Mea Maxima Culpa’ and changed his sinful ways.
And it was here, that he too showed , that he is the legitimate third member of the ‘unholy troika’, the threesome national (mis)leadership of this ill fated land. Instead of making amends by getting rid of the corrupted, accused, tarnished lackeys in his inner circle and getting the untainted and energetic ones who could make a U turn and hark back to the January 08 mandate, at least now, he is back in the old game, filling the deck with the same old rotten eggs, trying yet again the numbers game. In doing so he has already distanced himself from the genuine civil society members who stood for democracy and good governance, he has allowed his party to bleed political capital, so arduously if not somewhat fortuitously gained during the notorious 51 days, thus losing the sting the victory could have given democratic and constitutional governance.
Gifts they bring…
No, he is no wise man,either; not at all. He is the legitimate, full fledged third head of the Three Unwise Men who have come to visit, nay, haunt the Sri Lankan future. They do not bring gold, frankincense and myrrh to offer us; they have lies, deception and subterfuge that they dole out lavishly to all and sundry.
As we enter the threshold of possibly an election year of momentousness, behold ,The Three Unwise Men, who hold the reins that drive us to the future.
Fingers crossed for a Wonderful New Year, any way, Dear Citizens!!