Fri, 05 Mar 2021 Today's Paper

People’s verdict: A mandate to go forward

23 August 2015 06:31 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

A A A

he parliamentary elections held on the 17th have by and large conformed to the pattern of voting that we witnessed at the Presidential election conducted in early January this year. 
In fact, the recent electoral trend has been further reinforced by the outcome of these elections. It is absolutely necessary to recognize the contributions that the minority communities made to bring about political change in the country in January this year by joining progressive forces in the country.
Despite the repeated calls by the main opposition led by the former President to think about the past and the dangers of a radical departure from the past policies, a large majority of voters have ignored such calls and voted for change in public policies relating to development, ethnic relations and Sri Lanka’s relations with the outside world. 




No doubt the visible change in the style of governance in the country over the last few months gave confidence to the people to vote for the ruling coalition. 
On the other hand, what we have seen is neither a landslide victory for the latter nor an outright rejection of the main opposition. The lingering popularity of the former President, largely due to his military victory, generous subsidies to farmers and the absorption of rural university graduates into the public service, significantly contributed to the appeal of the SLFP in many rural electorates in a number of districts. 
But what is clear is that, when the entire voting population is taken into consideration, a clear majority has voted for a set of radically different policies to address the persisting issues in the country. 
While rejecting the style of governance of the previous regime characterised by cronyism, discrimination, favouritism, politicization of state institutions, corruption, wasteful public expenditure, and abuse of power , more and more people have embraced true democratic values, rule of law, and good governance. 

 

"National goals could be reached only if we adapted progressive policies in diverse fields..."



The change has been visible even in such matters as the conduct of VIPs on our roads. In a country where even an ambulance carrying a seriously ill person cannot easily pass through heavy traffic, Police officers were deployed in their dozens to create road space for political leaders to be driven at break neck speed.
 However, a change of regime is not a panacea for all the ills in a country. The challenges we face are immense and cannot be easily overcome within a short period of time. The issues involved are complex and require serious analysis in order to figure out what strategies are to be adopted to address them. 
On the other hand, even if we identify the right strategies, the resources needed to implement them  might not be readily available. 
Though politicians in general are shy to admit that there are serious financial constraints,  even a cursory glance at macro- economic data. I.e. the widening trade gap, budget deficit, domestic and foreign debts reveal it all. Mobilisation of higher end human resources can also be a challenge due to the continuing brain drain. Attracting FDI and expertise is not easy but there is no other way given the above state of affairs.
Not all state interventions, however require massive capital investment. Many of the economic and social sectors can be revamped with limited additional public investments i.e education, agriculture, SMEs, public health and eco-tourism. Public-private partnerships can play a major role in many sectors.




 Many economic and social issues cannot be addressed entirely through sectoral interventions. It is absolutely necessary to see the larger picture. This could be done only if we had a national forum at the highest level to do so. This is where a national planning council comes in. 
The only way to articulate a collective vision for the country is to engage in a wide-ranging analysis of the social, economic and cultural conditions at the highest level of administration. Unless we put the economy on a sound footing, bring about national integration and take care of the marginalized segments of society through inclusive social, economic and cultural policies, it would be virtually impossible to contain various disputes and conflicts, let alone sustainable development. 
These national goals could be reached only if we adapted progressive policies in diverse fields such as education, health, poverty alleviation, language and employment. To do this, we need to harness intellectual resources, not stir irrational emotions such as racist feelings and human greed.


 

"Despite the repeated calls by the main opposition led by the former President to think about the past and the dangers of a radical departure from the past policies, a large majority of voters have ignored such calls and voted for change in public policies relating to development, ethnic relations and Sri Lanka’s relations with the outside world."




 There is an urgent need to reconfigure the way we manage public affairs in the country. A segmented system of government where individual Ministers in Charge of diverse sectors move in different directions in keeping with their own whims and fancies is counterproductive from a national development point of view. 
While a national planning council can provide the overall framework for decision making, the Ministries that have overlapping functions should be mandated to complement each other by working together in order to achieve maximum synergy in terms of  efficiency and effectiveness. While this is not what our politicians are familiar with, the national leaders have to prevail upon them to fall in line in the national interest. It is hoped that the leaders would do so sooner than later.
See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Flowers, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,News, Courier/Delivery, Food Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka.

 

  Comments - 0

See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Flowers, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,News, Courier/Delivery, Food Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka.

 

 

Add comment

Comments will be edited (grammar, spelling and slang) and authorized at the discretion of Daily Mirror online. The website also has the right not to publish selected comments.

Reply To:

Name - Reply Comment




People at a loss as.... COVID vaccination programme hits a snag

The much awaited vaccination drive for Sri Lankan healthcare staff began on J

42 trees felled; Ambagamuwa PS Chairman - a law unto himself ! Unjust enrichment via natural resources

Ambagamuwa Pradesha Sabha (PS) Chairman Jayasanka Perera was allegedly accuse

The Man Behind Moves to Form the “BJP” in Sri Lanka

The flower bud is the accredited electoral symbol of the Sri Lanka Podujana P

Is it a giant leap backwards in the name of patriarchy?

154 years after the Sri Lanka Police was established, an Acting Woman Deputy

See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Flowers, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,News, Courier/Delivery, Food Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka.