Sri Lanka is blessed with the first President to ever give up power, but it’s easy to forget that other politicians are not like him. We have to keep an eye on them.
Even the UNP, undoubtably the good guys compared to Mahinda’s mafia crew, need to be kept in line. Good governance wise, they kinda shit the bed with the Central Bank scandal – not sacking the Central Bank Governor or investigating his son-in-law Arjun Aloysius for a highly suspicious transaction. Ranil’s appointment of the recently indicted Ravi Karunayake as Finance Minister (after which he was acquitted) did not send the best signals either.
Still, I will vote for the UNP (6, 12, 21). By voting for the elephant symbol, I do support them being in power. Ranil I think is personally uncorrupt and Ravi I guess I have to live with. That’s a political calculation I have to make as a voter that I wish I didn’t have to do. It just goes to show that whoever we elect, we have to keep them honest. Very few of our leaders naturally are.
The biggest change of the January 8th election is that politicians are now scared of us. We can take away their cars, their status, and they can end up in jail. Under Mahinda, they forgot that. If they kissed the ring, they got the spoils. Now I think they remember who’s in charge.
This is why it’s important to vote. Voting is only part of the political process but, like hiring and firing, it is the foundation of our authority. These are public servants and if they’re not afraid of getting fired, they will take over the house and turn it into a casino/brothel.
After The Election
However you vote, next term I want to see some resignations. I would like the pressure to stay on, so that these guys begin to feel shame. In civilized countries people resign over stupid tweets, but here people get hit with major felony charges and don’t step down. I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone resign out of shame. Have you? They really should. We need a renewed sense of scandal in this country.
After the last election, the President gave up power to the Parliament. Next election, I want to see the Parliament give up power to us.