Convenor of Patriotic Sri Lankans Forum Dr. Nalaka Godahewa yesterday urged people not to fall prey to traps laid by politicians to achieve their ulterior motives.
“Don’t fall into a trap laid by politicians and lose face in front of the international community,” he appealed to the general public at a press briefing organised by the Forum.
He said the majority of Sri Lankans are now politically knowledgeable than ever before. They don’t endorse any kind of violence. However some shortsighted people have been creating trouble at a few locations. Sri Lankan people behaved in an exemplary manner after the 21 April terrorist attacks. The Sinhalese or Tamils who were affected by the bomb blasts did not harm a single Muslim in retaliation. They could separate the terrorists from ordinary Muslims. Therefore it is sad to see a few unfortunate incidents disgracing the entire nation almost three weeks after the actual terrorist attacks.
He alleged that it was the Government politicians who masterminded the 1983 riots. The Government then held another political party responsible and banned it. The true story came into light only several years later. It was the ruling party goons who were sent on three trains to handle election work, set fire to the Jaffna Library during the DDC elections. The entire country suffered for almost three decades as a result of these shortsighted actions of then Government leaders. The opposition today wants an election. So they want a peaceful environment where they can do their preparatory work for the election. So it is the Government who is the ultimate beneficiary of the state of emergency. Now the Government doesn’t have to worry about opposition organising meetings, public rallies or demonstrations. Opposition can no longer do door-to-door campaigns. Social media is suppressed. Media houses are given strict instruction on what they can publicise. The Government can now push for the much opposed Counter Terrorism Act. They can even arrest some strong opponents if required under emergency laws.
“It won’t be a surprise if this Government calls for foreign military support on the pretext that the situation is uncontrollable and use that to postpone the elections,” Godahewa opined.
He said the next presidential election could be the last chance to save the country from the current social economic and political crisis. The economic hardships and the security concerns are common for all Sri Lankans whether you are a Sinhalese, Tamil or a Muslim. “That is why we see a nationwide trend where all these communities are uniting together for a common purpose.
So what’s the option left for the Government, which is becoming increasingly unpopular? It has to find ways to divide these people again. Like the ‘Divide and Rule’ principle adopted by the British imperialists the current rulers will also do everything within their powers to create rifts between Buddhists, Catholics, Hindus and Muslims. When you are divided you become weak against your enemy,” he pointed out.
“So let’s keep this mind. Educate yourself and educate others of potential political manures. Don’t fall into their trap laid by invisible hands. Stay united,” appealed Godahewa.