Lacille de Silva (Daily Mirror)
Our politicians take to politics to become rich overnight. Having joined politics, they disregard their primary responsibilities towards the people and the country. Similarly, they work steadfastly their way to amass wealth.
They pay only lip service and do not strengthen the pursuit of investigations into illegal excavation, sand mining, and deforestation of State lands, serious fraud, corruption or abuse of power.
The incumbent Government seems to have failed to expedite even a single corruption allegation after two years in office.
Why don’t they deal firmly with those politicians and public officers who are involved in corrupt and illegal practices?
They have no regard for the environment, protection of nature, laws, rules and regulations. Couldn’t we see the plight of our roads? Roads indicate the true picture – the barometer of the lawlessness in our country. Politicians flout traffic laws openly. They do not respect the other road users in the country. They stop others for them to move at break-neck speed with the support of their security escorts. They cannot discipline the road users by increasing the fines only to Rs.25000.
The road discipline can be ensured only if the politicians respect and abide by rules to the very letter in the first place, not otherwise!
The number of deaths due to motor vehicle accidents is on the rise at an alarming rate.
May I add that the number of deaths due to breast cancer and prostate cancer are also on the increase?
The Government has failed to provide required facilities at hospitals to get periodic checks done unlike in developed countries.
It is simply because the Government does not realistically or seriously loot at these issues. Giving priority to politicians when it comes to allocations of scarce funds should be stopped, particularly for luxury vehicles to be driven in motorcades.
They should set an example in every respect if they need to discipline this country. And that is the last thing we could expect from self-centred politicians.
They all have got all that wrong. They justify the luxuries they enjoy and continue to enjoy flamboyance at the expense of the general public.
Instead, the solution is to do what is morally right – simple obedience to honesty. They however have failed to take necessary initiatives to improve, what has gone wrong, for the past several decades and do not accept responsibility for their mistakes.
Christians say they believe in the dictum that ‘Thou shalt not steal’. The Buddhists believe the second precept that is “I undertake the precept to refrain from taking that which is not given.”
Politicians take more than they need using the authority they have and deprive the more deserving people from their entitlement through fraud and deception.
Ranjan Ramanayake therefore had allegedly abused the errant public official by verbalising his anger – “Henagahanawa”, against inaction and indecisiveness to stop wrongdoing. We should also not forget that the Divisional Secretary of Divulapitiya had allegedly been coarse, crude, rude and impolite as well.
I am confident the multiple institutions already established in terms of the law should enjoy greater independence, but in substance too, if they should do their job properly.
Let me quote one simple example.
In June 1991, the Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke pleaded guilty to not wearing a seat belt and was be fined Australian $80. Hawke never dealt with the Police officer, who issued the ticket. Instead he pleaded guilty.
“PRECIFAC is a lame duck, when it comes to corruption, in the present Government because it does not have powers to investigate corruption after the January 10, 2015. If the President is sincere, why is he not extending the period to cover corruption in the present regime too?”
Could this happen in our country? If the political leadership does not set the example, nothing can be improved in this country.
The President has appointed another Presidential Commission to probe in to the infamous Central Bank bond scam. Shouldn’t the President extend powers of PRECIFAC to consider frauds and corruption that had taken place under the present government as well?
PRECIFAC is a lame duck, when it comes to corruption, in the present Government because it does not have powers to investigate corruption after the January 10, 2015.
Donald Trump in his inaugural address said:
“For too long, a small group in our nation’s capital has reaped the rewards of Government, while the people have borne the cost”.
Our politicians too, do not change for the better and continue to break Public Sector regulations and laws which if proved, result in their conviction.
Deputy Minister Asoka Abeysinghe recently said that a considerable number of politicians in the present government too would be convicted and that those MPs would not be able to engage themselves in politics thereafter.
Why can’t they do that without rhetoric?
Gampaha District Parliamentarian Ranjan Ramanayake has allegedly accused the Divisional Secretary, Divulapitiya, and another Parliamentarian for alleged involvement in illegal excavation.
In response the Gampaha District Administrative Services Association (GDASA) has written to the President, the Prime Minister, the Speaker, District Secretaries and other heads in the Gampaha District that the Deputy Minister should withdraw the statement.
Shouldn’t the GDASA insist that if there were any truth in the accusation of the Deputy Minister, which steps should also be taken to deal with the perpetrators in terms of the law?
Why are these public officials silent regarding taking legal action against errant public officials and relevant politicians?
Isn’t this impunity?
Surprisingly, in this country the heat has turned against the Deputy Minister and the seriousness of excavation and the crimes the perpetrators have allegedly committed have been ignored.
I do not think this is correct. The President and the Prime Minister must ensure to stop deforestation, soil excavation, illegal sand mining or any such act.
These should be stopped. Stop the rhetoric, action is most welcome!