The road is there and in good order
Also the eyes too are sharp and seeing well
But, why do we walk aimlessly, very much away from the road ,
Just like some who have lost their way and stranded
(A popular Singhalese parable)
It is a time where the momentum is picking up to take part in a ‘political ritual’. Considering the length of time our nation has passed through from a time we were supposed to have got our ‘Independence’, to think, plan and act for our own benefit. However, the ever increasing trends show frustration among the people and they are in doubt about our own abilities. It goes same for the politicians who have been blind because they simply did not have visions and for the voters who had been and have been blind, therefore no capacity to see and be rational. Ultimately, it was a case of the blind electing the blind with no political visions to lead the everlasting blind, the voters.
It was just few months ago, an over confident leader who felt that he was almighty , came to a disastrous end for him personally and in some ways even for the Nation. Punishment was obviously clear and he was compelled to face a lot of humiliation. Our Nation experienced several firsts in democratic representation with a prime minister being appointed while there was another Prime Minister in Office. Although the majority was there, they watched passively the changes being taking place. It was an honourable action on the part of the President to keep his promises. The reactions of the affected were slow and without confidence. This proves that those affected were clueless and it was equal to being blind.
What happened next was not ‘Good Governance,’ or efforts to redeem the images lost, but to bring back a rejected leader. If the rejected leader Mahinda Rajapaksa had the courage to say that he would allow future to decide, he would not have earned his present qualifications to identify himself as a ‘Power Hungry’ politician.
The faction that tried to boost the project in bringing back Mahinda Rajapaksa obviously had a very childish strategy in having a campaign to promote agitations all over the country, giving the picture that they were corrupt themselves and were trying to bring back a corrupt leader.
Although there was a majority, it was a different party with a small number of seats in the Parliament that started calling the shots and the grievance became too strong . The inevitable fragmentation of the SLFP led front looming, with the obvious downfall of the SLFP, naturally, created a dilemma for the President. He had the choices of seeing the fragmentation of the SLFP passively on one hand, and on the other to stop breathing fire and become willing to accommodate the accused. That way, the commitment made towards ‘Good Governance’ became weak and shaking hands with the accused became the outcome.
The change made on January 8 this year became an ‘eye-opener’ and the whole country was eagerly waiting to see positive developments towards the enhancement of living standards of this nation. Now, it has given way to a more personal glorification need. All these show clearly the fact that all the politicians are more concerned about their personal positions than the well being of the nation.
The staple food of the people went up in prices and although the new Finance Minister activated several measures beneficial for the people, the effect did not reach due to the unavoidable realities in the open market.
It may be interesting to know that in 1960s a measure of rice (approximately a kilo) used to be 25 cents and even if we take it as Rs.80 for a kilo of rice now, it is 320 percent increase over 50 years. It must be noted that a loaf of bread which used to be 25 cents is now easily Rs.50 and it is a 200 percent increase.
It is understood that prices are affected by various other reasons and therefore shall not remain the same. But, if the production in rice increased and Sri Lankan Currency was made stronger by Foreign Exchange earnings, the cost of Bread would not have risen so much.
That goes for all the facilities needed by the people and at least now we must start concentrating on such issues.
Consciousness of politicians
It is alarmingly pathetic that our politicians in general have no concern for the actual needs of the people. They can see only what concerns their personal well being and are blind to the problems of the people. They are busy now planning how to outsmart and defeat their opponents.
They are not concerned about preparing a list of problems people are facing and their answers proposed to bring in benefits which would have been appreciated by the people. If people know what they need they will no longer be blind. That way, the people electing those who understand their problems shall bring an end to its becoming a case of Blind electing Blind to lead them.