MISTAKE IN THE MAKING

6 February 2012 06:30 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Blinking red lights as a reminder, in the background is the disastrous All Party Conference that meandered meaninglessly and ended with a report that stays in the waste paper basket. It’s an exercise that must be completed in the lifetime of the present government-otherwise successors will foul it by design or otherwise. With an acclaimed LLRC report why create another body to revisit it? Obligation is to implement the lauded report with credibility- that being the target range of the West. When there is remedy beautifully crafted at home - for which the President is applauded- allowing it to remain on the shelf instead of weaving structures to implement it, is beyond comprehension.Why become a wobbly liability with a valued asset in hand? Would the TNA, UNP or JVP desire to enhance the image of the President in finding a solution to the national issue by lending helping hands? Road maps are irrelevant where passengers refuse to take to the road. Opposition cannot afford to add further brownie points to a President too strong, yet they are determined to slay. Surely not the TNA, that strives to keep communities apart, painting forever the Sinhala bogey, its main plank to attract votes. If there is genuine amity, TNA is out of business. Ethnic harmony means national parties will make inroads into the north and east vote with Tamil candidates, reducing the near monopoly TNA once enjoyed. TNA strives to thrive on conflict: genuine reconciliation is not in their manifesto or in their grain. JVP once the best of friends is now the worst of enemy - the party split with the radical wing building bridges to the remnants of the LTTE. The official wing has to tread a path of a traditional opposition to find its feet again by opposing on every count. They will seek to confuse the PSC. UNP so divided with the leader accused of colluding with the President: its comeback trail, if any, is on the back of a blundering Government. Would the UNP hand a trump to the President to enable him to solve the ethnic issue and become a hero in zones of war and peace? The inclination of the opposition would be to throttle the PSC with a no show on results: giving width to hostile international forces to raise the cry of procrastination and prevarication. All the encomiums LLRC received will be of no avail unless the recommendations are implemented. The government genuinely desires to implement the LLRC recommendations but conveys the wrong message by taking a wrong turn.With a 2/3 majority in Parliament along with the confidence of the people, President relatively popular, a splintered opposition whose comeback is possible only on the back of a blundering government; the Government should have the wisdom of directly executing the recommendations for which it has the inherent strength. PSC is to place the issue in a burner. The government must not lose its winning streak- receiving an endorsement of the LLRC recommendations by the hostile sector of the so-called International Community. Achievements should record on the scoreboard. PSC – a tortoise instead of a hare is selected for the journey Sending emissaries globetrotting to exotic destinations with allowances to live in luxury from Cameroon to Cote d’Ivoire, from Burkina Faso to Burundi to espouse the cause of Lanka, without any results to show of the homework done, is a hollow shriek. Importance lies in getting down to the drawing board and having an artwork, based on the LLRC layout with due modifications for execution. Execute it speedily before the economic crunch hits us hard. During the ongoing execution, travel even extra-terrestrially in maximum comfort, to hell or heaven, to sell the ware. Our travellers’ club can hit the road but with an exhibit to display in the process of fulfilment. There must be value in travel not merely to add fly-smile points. Accountability requires inquiry as deemed by the LLRC and needs no switch to a PSC for ratification. It’s an issue that stands alone sui juris. Sri Lanka has a robust defense therefore any semblance of evasion is not in the national interest especially as it should be swiftly settled. Siberia is a case study.We need a fast forward module that takes off without delay to display our bona fides on accountability. UK/US/France sorted it with military tribunals and such provision exists in our statutes too. The most worrying factor is a possible economic crunch predicted in the second half of 2012 due to market conditions in the West and our financial policies. Sanctions on Iran impacts Sri Lanka unfavourably. If there is an economic downturn along with international pressure exerted on failing to provide remedies to legitimate Tamil grievances and accountability, its double jeopardy. LLRC has provided a breathing space that must be utilized to the maximum before the financial barometers nosedive. After a doomed PSC effort due to delay with no tangible results to show, seeking to start afresh will place us in naughty corner with calls for punishment by a hostile foreign lobby. LLRC made a cardinal error in not setting out an outline of an effective vehicle, to implement its recommendations. Leaving it the Government led to the PSC. A government well represented in Parliament with minority support in its ranks, need not await guidance that will never materialize from the Opposition to reach accord at a PSC. Instead it should act on the recommendations of the LLRC swiftly to prevent foreign interference. From the next sessions of the Human Rights Council in March we could become a punching bag.
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