The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) was successfully concluded recently. Benefits of the summit meeting are now being discussed throughout the country. Besides the good and bad of this summit, there were enjoyable incidents associated with the event involving heads of government, their wives as well as local and foreign media personnel.
" Wife of the President of Ghana lavishly spent some US$ 5,000 on clothes within only 15-minutes of shopping "
Of all these events, most memorable and pleasant was the event of unexpected interviewing of President Mahinda Rajapaksa by a foreign journalist as the President was leaving after participating as chief guest of the Business Forum held at the Cinnamon Grand Hotel.
Walking towards the President, Jonathan Miller of British Channel 4 television raised a question about the human rights in Sri Lanka. The all smiles President calmly replied that an independent investigation was already in progress about the so- called human rights allegations.
“You can visit any place in Sri Lanka. Observe the prevailing situation in the country, then you will understand whether the people are deprived of the human rights you are talking about.” Further said the President. “Why don’t you meet me personally we can chat leisurely over a cup of coffee,” Making this friendly invitation President left the hotel.
“Thank you Mr. President “Jonathan responded.
The dazzling performances by the Sri Lankan girls prior to the inauguration of the Heads of Government Meeting seemed to have enticed many state leaders and they were filled with admiration for the girls who had charmed them endlessly.
South African President Jacob Suma praised President Rajapaksa revealing his bewitchment with such feminine spectacular.
Meanwhile, there was the surprising news of many African leaders not turning up to participate in the Business Forum held in connection with the CHOGM as they were fast asleep in their comfortable hotel rooms. Security officers and drivers detailed for them were waiting, but they didn’t turn up to be taken to the Business Forum.
Some incidents related to African heads of state and their relish for food also triggered good humour. Some of them had even brought food into the conference halls during sessions held before the main CHOGM event. Several of them had thus brought banana fritters into the conference halls.
Interestingly, some heads of state had loved enjoying Sri Lankan spicy food while others had found them hot.
Some of these leaders had taken part in as many as eight CHOGMs held before the Colombo event.
The Belize leader was noticed by everyone as the most jovial leader.
Most of them were fascinated by the sight of Sri Lankan elephants. Some even touched these animals showing great admiration. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key asked President Rajapaksa if he could have an elephant shipped to his country. President Rajapaksa promised to do it based on an agreement of exchanging animals between the two countries.
The former president of the CHOGM, the youthful looking Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott was a distinctive figure at the Colombo CHOGM for his positive attitude towards Sri Lanka not caring for the negative comments made about it.
He presented President Rajapaksa T- shirt with signatures of all the players of the Australian rugby team revealing that he had known about the President’s enthusiasm for the game.
Tony Abbott, being a leader who cares for physical fitness did some jogging with Parliamentarian Namal Rajapaksa and several others in the Galle Face Green.
Another interesting event was the request made by Canadian government delegate Dilip Obroy at the Water’s Edge for a birthday party from President Rajapaksa despite the most adverse attitudes of his government towards Sri Lanka.
President‘s birthday which fell on November 18 was frequently highlighted during the CHOGM Sessions. Malaysian Prime Minister said at the main event held at the BMICH that things would not be complete without the cutting of a birthday cake by the President. This remark pleasantly surprised the President.
Making it more exciting was when an elaborate cake appeared from the Mount Lavinia Hotel within just two hours, sponsored by Monitoring MP Sajin Vaas Gunawardena, President’s Secretary Lalith Weeratunga and Foreign Ministry Additional Secretary Rodney Perera.
The Prime Ministers of the Saint Keats and Navis showed keen interest to learn more about ancient cities in Sri Lanka. BMICH Director General Bandula Ekanayake generously provided them with a valuable book written on this subject, making them very pleased about it .
Meanwhile, first ladies who accompanied their husbands also created some spicy news. The spiciest of them all came from the wife of the President of Ghana. She had lavishly spent some US$ 5,000 on clothes within only 15-minutes of shopping. Many other ladies also had grabbed opportunity to do shopping at the shopping malls in Colombo.
The baggage weight of the Malaysian Prime Minister’s wife also drew humorous remarks as she had brought personal effects weighing 130 kilograms for her brief stay.
Comments - 6
Jagath Wednesday, 27 November 2013 05:07 AM
This article is just trying to praise MR and justify whatever things he did wrong. This is lying about the discussion MR had with Jonathan Miller which had been published as video in most of the papers. These journalist may be trying to do their contract given by the government.
Punny Pellow Wednesday, 27 November 2013 02:40 AM
Do we have a good laugh or wonder what this entire joke was all about finally?
Herby Pamaperuma. Tuesday, 26 November 2013 07:27 PM
SRI LANKA HISTORICALLY AND TRADITIONALLY FAMOUS OF ITS UNPRESEDENT NAUTRE OF LAVISH HOSPITALITY ,EXTENDED JOY, PLEAUSURE AND THAMASHA TO THE CHOGM PARTICIPANTS AND THEMSELVES AMPOUNTING TO BILLIONS, WHILE A MAJORITY OF OUR INDEGENOUS PEOPLE REMAIN STILL SUFFEREING UNABLE TO ADD A SQUARE MEAL.WHO CARES,RIGHTLY
Upali Tuesday, 26 November 2013 01:17 PM
Thanks Thilini for your enjoyable piece of gossip.
roni Tuesday, 26 November 2013 08:41 PM
I ma sorry for Srilanka journalist's remain silence regarding Jonathan Miller's bad behaviour, question is Srilankan journalist can do the same in UK ? impossible Srilanka Journalistìs did not condemn his behaviour internationaly . very feeble minded Srilanka journalist.
FRANK KWARTENG Friday, 31 January 2014 06:56 AM
OH AFRICA LEADERS AND THEIR WIVES.
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.