Anniversary, corruption and constitution making | Sunday Observer

Anniversary, corruption and constitution making

This cat purrs low with discontent and it’s still not winter for winter permits discontent after the surge of sap and romance in spring, summer’s sun and blossoms and autumn harvests. Why pray this feline’s discontent? At the obduracy, ignorance and ill manners displayed by 30% of our legislators; the ever present corruption erupting out in a new fashion and illogical voices from the masses.

Giving the 70th year commemoration a miss

Yes right, you’ve guessed correct. Menika is sorely disappointed at the ill manners of those who absented themselves from Parliament on the day Sri Lanka celebrated its birth as an independent, democratic sovereign state. Visitors from SAARC countries, most of them Speakers of their respective seats of government, were in the visitors’ gallery at the House by the Diyawanne, but not some MPs in their allotted seats. We guess they were from the Opposition benches and we guess further they were members of the so called Joint Opposition. This cat really does not know who was absent; what she’s stated above is a guess of who the missing 30% were. Whoever it was who boycotted the session to mark the event with national pride, are ill-bred. Maybe, some say we cannot be joyful; we can only mourn the ageing process with little progress shown in how Members conduct themselves. That’s left to each person to decide but all MPs should have turned up as it was a marking of the 70th year of its democratic being. To this cat the scales are tipped towards ‘better now’ as regards Parliament in spite of still existing rot and rubbish and a greater number of John Kotelawala’s arecanut climbers entering the August House as people’s reps.

If it was the Jt Op with the Rajapaksa clan and a couple of followers boycotting the do, it was not done, not done at all. At least come for the speeches and the party that followed, share a piece of cake and meet and greet foreign dignitaries. They should have been present at least in gratitude for what the celebrant (Sri Lanka) gave them: free education and power and all that. To the Papa, years of being a Member of Parliament and then the presidency of the country for a long decade, tumultuous admittedly, but with generous perks and plenty of money even to waste. We remember he played a major role in winning the war, but after…?

Reason for their absenteeism? Maybe, they could not bear to see their arch rival who dared to contest their boss seated comfortably. Maybe, they were plotting, planning and gathering forces to illegally storm the Hambantota airport or at least the Indian office there.

The father built the airport with no regard for distance from the capital and it being right bang in the land of wildlife and corridor of elephants and flight space of peacocks. No, the Chinese had to be pleased and maybe there was compensation; a game of ping pong with them? Earlier when protests were staged, strings were pulled by the unseen hand of a puppeteer.

This time the son and heir was rabble rousing in a pack of thugs AGAINST a court order. Illegal even more than illogical. And now arrests have been made, probably to release on bail soon enough. Maybe there’s another protest in the offing to protest the lawful arrests. Some believe they are still above the law. They were, but should not be any longer. This cat curls herself in her couch to see what ensues.

Beneficiaries of an international hacking job

We are a small country and thus considered juvenile by some. Long ago we were colonized and earned a reputation for taking the easy path with the Portuguese, Dutch and British. However, we showed grit and cunning with all these. We went to the depths of treachery against the Kandyan King in the 1810s. We could pass that off as rebelling against a Nayakkar ruling us. But, how explain the later betrayal of one Adigar by another, hoping to be made king. So, along with national loyalty and pride we also harbour strong strands of laziness and cunning. Many decades ago when handheld ticket dispensing machines were distributed to CTB bus conductors, soon enough these were tampered with - hitherto thought to be thief proof gadgets. Now, with all the corruption that has grown with each passing year, there is international thieving too. Shocking! Shakila Munasinghe has been arrested by the police for allegedly benefitting by the computer hacking job of the Far Eastern International Bank in Taiwan to the tune of USD 60 m.

The stolen money has been sent all around the world, from the US to the tiny speck of a country, Sri Lanka. Munasinghe has been a beneficiary it seems, and distributed some of it to a couple of Indians. Sure, local people may be in the know, even if not in the loop. Munasinghe is reported to have been “staying in a temple with the help of an influential MP under a cloud.” Who exactly is under the cloud – the benefitter of hacking or the MP? Surely both. The police arrested Munasinghe and this was reported in a daily on October 9. Taking sanctuary in a temple (presumably Buddhist) rings a bell, nay an alarm. Are there other local beneficiaries? So, our corruption has reached high tech internationality.

So much debate and surmising even before a first draft is out

This cat here means Sri Lanka’s new constitution. Everyone and his brother is discussing it and ringing premature alarm bells: the new Constitution will damage Buddhism; federalism and division of the country is inevitable.

Stuff and nonsense! Wait and see before death knells are tolled. Monday 9 TV I Face the Nation had three panelists. One has been seen many times descending the steps leading to the Supreme Court after acting on his hobby – submitting HR applications. Listening to him this cat got the term ‘maverick’ appearing all the time before her eyes. So she aroused herself and looked the word up in a dictionary – ‘Often acting differently from the usual.’ His contention is the oft touted ’sinister foreign influence.’

An ex head of the HR Commission was agreed with totally as he said he was all for the retention of an executive president. But, the wisest and sided most with, not this cat avers due to gender but to the wise words said, was by a woman law lecturer. She, like the HR person cautioned: ‘only committee reports and such like have been released. Wait for a draft of the Constitution before debating.’ This cat adds, before tearing your own or your opponent’s hair.’ Hemin! Hemin!.

- Menika 

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