Elections can’t be held for another 24 months-till 2020- due to the stupidity evolved by the‘pundits’ on the 19th amendment. Manipulations have placed the UNP in serious trouble. If local Government elections aren’t held in early 2018 – the UNP will lose more votes- for not keeping to the scheduled scorebook. Reasons are too numerous to be indicated in an article of 1000 words at the editor’s request, thankfully ignored permanently by him and me.
- Many know a new Government with a new Prime Minister may be in the making
- Too late to wait till 2020 for a comeback
- Mahinda Rajapaksa had a golden opportunity after successfully winning the war
- Blame can be laid on the eerie silence on a matter critical to the Government in power
- The right to criticize judicial error that is internationally observed is no longer deemed sacrosanct
- Judges have a duty to exercise their functions within their jurisdiction
Too late to wait till 2020 for a comeback…sitting MP’s from the UNP/SLFP/JO/ will lose their seats; that may not endear them to the party leadership of the parties they represent.
UNP digs its grave
End of a coalition:SLFP/ UNP/JO MPs will cross parties to search for a final resting home by not giving a hearing to the selfish pleadings of President Maithripala Sirisena, imploring them to stay with him, goes unheeded. Many know a new Government with a new Prime Minister (PM) may be in the making without holding elections; with a prohibition of 4 and ½ years imposed on holding fresh elections since the last by a Supreme Court at a flawed moment.
With varied elections (1) general (2) presidential (3) provincial and (4) local government lumped within a 24 to 30 months time frame caused by a vague amalgamation of the 13th and 19th amendments by unkempt minds –makes the democratic process imprudent and gives rise to thoughts of jettisoning the two broken legs in our constitution. Serves them right.
Mahinda Rajapaksa (MR) had a golden opportunity after successfully winning the war, to amend 13th to look innocuous by weeding out the poisonous content; instead his subordinates were engaged in unlicensed skullduggery without indulging in proper governance. Puts him out of reckoning: Ranil Wickremesinghe can revive him.Usually vocal Westerners fail to make the needed noise that makes Wickremesinghe look their pet poodle. However no political party will dislodge the Provincial Council system with the JVP acknowledging it, housing its tired politician’s kith and kin to represent the next generation of politics.
Misery is extending beyond our lifetimes
Remember the 19th amendment that was challenged in the case of Dayasri vs AG –with counsel playing the role of the petitioner, addressed the Supreme Court, leaning heavily on the unconstitutionality of taking away the peoples right to vote at General Elections on artificially imposed time frames or the refusal to hold elections for 4 ½ years. Ironically these submissions were re-echoed by several other counsels, but weren’t considered or accepted/rejected by the bench of three judges. All are made helpless today.
As a counsel having won and lost many cases, yet never before or after was the prime submission so readily un-reckoned that seriously affects the people and the country and the democratic process on a major lapse caused by the apex court. Blame can be laid on the eerie silence on a matter critical to the Government in power. Where are the great constitutionalists of the West and the mighty warriors on human rights on this issue? Gone fishing.
Consequences of denying the people the right to exercise the vote at a General Election for a period of 54 months or declining to hold fresh elections, once the Government loses its majority or rules outside the period democracy has mandated or Government gets defeated on a sensitive financial bill such as the Budget to extract money to govern or on a vote of no confidence that defeats a Government in office, leaves the people in a quandary. Enables a crooked Government to make a few cosmetic changes and remain in office with the same crew disarranged.
At least, we now have a Supreme Court to be proud of, where the Chief Justice (whom I criticized previously when he acted meekly and laud him and the rest of the Bench for the service rendered at present) is not afraid to call a spade by its proper name. Why? The right to criticize judicial error that is internationally observed is no longer deemed sacrosanct and has reached our shoreline and has been practiced by bold counsel without cutting the edges of contempt that must be safeguarded to make judges act fearlessly and independently; while gently reminding them none are above the law. The character of Sri Lanka has been enhanced with the ladies and gentlemen that grace and glorify the higher judiciary and the appellate courts having exercised its powers in an upright manner. No more need be asked or expected as we await the decision in one of the most sensitive cases in our lifetime relating to the Bond Commission.
Judges have a duty to exercise their functions within their jurisdiction and can’t exceed the limits to please many and defy the frontiers of jurisdiction. Otherwise it can be challenged in courts successfully with their defense in the hands of the Attorney General.
A moment to savor is when three great judges Wimalaratne, Vythialingam and Colin-Thome fearlessly struck down on grounds of natural justice the findings of the Special Presidential Commission of Inquiry by no lesser men than Sharvananda, Weeraratne and De Alwis holding Sirimavo Bandaranaike guilty of wrongful misconduct; that required then President Jayewardane to restore the status quo by way of a passage via a parliamentary resolution that was sharply criticized by the Federal Party led by Amirthalingam and the CWC of late S Thondaman. Such were times of which much is forgotten.
The story does not end there. J.R Jayewardene voluntarily pardoned ‘Mrs JVP Bandaranaike’, previously denied her the right to contest him in 1982 [substitute was Hector Kobbekaduwa]. UNP’s candidate at the next presidential election was R.Premadasa, not in the good books of JRJ, won the election with help of the JVP’s protest campaign; Premadasa was a better President than the old fox JRJ. He was gunned down by the LTTE.
Bandaranaike died much later after serving another term as PM in extreme age after holding office of PM at the time she was docile. Sri Lankans never grudged it; as she was a leader who loved the country and never betrayed the trust.