The JVP supported the election of the current president with hopes of a great change in the country. What are your thoughts on the progress so far? Have the promises been fulfilled?
Our primary aim was to topple the Rajapaksa regime. At that time we explained to the people that the Rajapaksa regime should be removed from power, but we cannot guarantee whether the new government will fulfill their promises. We wanted the people to organise themselves to safeguard their rights. The current government is a temporary one, because what usually happens is that soon after a presidential election is held, there is a general election. This time the agreement was that within 100 days of the presidential election, the general election was to be held. That was because there were major areas to sort out before holding the elections; that is constitutional amendments, legal amendments, punish those who had committed fraud and corruption as well as crimes, and relief for the people in terms of reduction in prices. Those were the main responsibilities that this government had to perform. But when we look at the progress of this government since January 8, they have failed to fulfill the promises that they made to the people.
If you look at the current cabinet, there are more ministers than promised and most of them are those who worked against President Sirisena, what are your thoughts on this?
On January 8, the people defeated not President Mahinda Rajapaksa, actually more than him, the people were disappointed with his Cabinet ministers and MPs. Usually the people are more displeased with the leader and less with the government, however, this time it was the other way around. The mandate that President Sirisena received on January 8, was not against President Mahinda Rajapaksa alone, but also against his Cabinet ministers, deputies and MPs, especially their actions and involvement in crimes, corruption and fraud. They were involved in illegal alcohol and ethanol businesses as well as treasure hunting. It was against all of this that the people gave their mandate to President Sirisena.
President Sirisena should understand why the people elected him as the leader of this country, their hopes and aspirations. What we see today is the same old game as before, nothing has changed. President Mahinda Rajapaksa during his time created a culture of providing incentives and benefits to individuals to maintain his power. The best example is that even close to the presidential elections he took the general secretary of the UNP and gave him a ministerial post just for 20 days. It was against all of this that President Sirisena was elected. But the incumbent president too, in order to maintain his power is doing the same thing as there is a power struggle within the SLFP between two sections-Mahinda group and Maithripala group. In order to strengthen the Maithripala group he has used his presidential powers. That is why we find more and more ministers being sworn in. We have seen that he does not hesitate to give ministerial posts to whoever supports him in Parliament.
He has bestowed Senior Advisor positions to former Prime Ministers D M Jayaratne and Ratnasiri Wickramanayake of the previous regime. Former Prime Minister D M Jayaratne has been accused of helping those involved in the drug business. We can see that Maithripala Sirisena is following in the footsteps of Mahinda Rajapaksa where he is granting positions, ministerial posts and other benefits in order to maintain his power. This is totally against the mandate that the people gave him on January 8.
During the presidential elections there was a lot of talk about mega deals and corruption, however nothing has been proven either in Sri Lanka or abroad. What are your thoughts?
It takes time to investigate assets and funds that may be abroad. However, there are many misdeeds that we can see right in front of us, even investigations into those activities have been halted. There are many reasons for this, from one side Maithripala Sirisena is thinking that those he has to investigate and punish are members of the SLFP central committee, SLFP district leaders and also his ministers. Due to the division and struggles he faces within his party, he thinks that if he punishes these people then he will lose his power. Everyone knows that Maithripala Sirisena is hindering the investigations.
Then on the other hand Ranil Wickremesinghe is thinking that a division has to be created within the SLFP. For that division to happen, the Mahinda Rajapaksa camp should be strong. Therefore, if he goes to punish anyone, the Mahinda Rajapaksa camp will be weakened. Even Ranil Wickremesinghe is thinking in order to break the SLFP, the people who are supporting Mahinda Rajapaksa should not be punished.
Mahinda Rajapaksa too is hindering the investigation to safeguard his family, those who are close to him and himself. They have been able to disrupt the activities of the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption. The previous government appointed all three commissioners and with one of the commissioners submitting his resignation, the Commission is now rendered inactive.
The Financial Crimes Investigations Division was formed to investigate financial fraud. The primary aim of Mahinda Rajapaksa now is to destroy that division. His supporters have threatened everyone that is from the DIG to the police constable in that division, and then they have also filed cases in the Supreme Courts to stop the investigations. In this manner they have done many things to hinder the continuation of the investigations.
The main reason for this is that many of the allegations are made against the Rajapaksa family. If you conduct investigations into the numerous deals such as the purchase of MIGs, the filling of land to build a museum that is dedicated to his parents and the money spent by certain institutions, you will find that the person responsible is Gotabaya Rajapaksa. Investigations into Divi Neguma will lead you to Basil Rajapaksa. The forcible use of the transmitting towers of state television and other resources by CSN and securing exclusive rights to broadcast cricket matches from cricket authorities as well as the murder of a leading rugby player will lead you to Yoshitha Rajapaksa. Then the Securities and Exchange Commission has provided large sums of money to Tharunyata Hetak to educate the youth on the stock exchange, but those funds have been used for other purposes. The special lights from Kettaramaya have been removed and taken for the Kandy Night Races and have not been returned. Investigations into all of this will lead to Namal Rajapaksa. Investigations into who gave money to the LTTE will lead to Mahinda Rajapaksa. Shiranthi Rajapaksa is responsible for the misuse of funds of the Siriliya Foundation and also for the purchase of a number of houses in Colombo. Investigations into the deals of SriLankan Airlines will lead you to Shiranthi Rajapaksa’s brother, Nishantha Wickremasinghe. Investigations on to who provided arms to the rebels in Ukraine will lead you to one of Mahinda Rajapaksa’s cousins. In this manner the entire family is under investigations for various crimes.
There are also investigations against his officials such as his Secretary Lalith Weeratunga for the misuse of 600 million rupees of the TRCSL. Then, Gamini Senarath, his Chief of Staff, Central Bank Governor as well as the Secretary to the Treasury are all under investigation. The Road Development Authority was under the direct purview of the former President, its Chairman R W R Premasiri is also under investigation. Chairmen of the various public institutions such as the Sri Lanka Ports Authority who were very close to the former President are all under investigation. Many investigations are being held into the actions of his ministers as well.
There is now a push to halt these investigations. This is due to the fact that with the knowledge of Mahinda Rajapaksa, this process is being hindered and Maithripala Sirisena and Ranil Wickremesinghe are not doing anything in order to secure their power.
After this government came into power the people are actually feeling that it is more about revenge and vengeance than actually doing anything else. The economy is not moving, the prices of essential items have gone up and there is no relief to the people. When you look at it there is no benefit to the people. What are your thoughts on this?
This government has no right to engage in economic planning or direct any economic activity. Ranil Wickremesinghe does not have the mandate to be the prime minister of the country. This cabinet does not have a mandate to govern the country. The opposition leader has no right to hold that post. There has been no announcement in Parliament as to who the opposition leader is. As such this government has neither a mandate nor a right to govern this country. This transitory period that was assigned to this government was for a very short time.
The UNP has always been seen as experts on the economy, where their policies drive the economy forward. They are now proving in this very short period of time that they have not been able to direct the economy in a new direction. I saw Ranil Wickremesinghe saying on stage that everyone’s pockets are filled with money. But no ones pockets are filled with money. The rupee has depreciated greatly against the dollar, to a level that has never been seen before.
The controversial bond issue by the Central Bank has created a massive instability in the country.Therefore, within this short period of time the Maithri-Ranil coalition has proven that they do not have any direction in terms of the economy. We also feel that they do not have the right to continue with governing the country.
What is the stance of the JVP?
There is a form of anarchy in our country where no one answers or is responsible to anyone. Currently in parliament we cannot pass an important resolution or even discuss anything important. The Parliament has become a place to deliver the sympathy notice of members who have passed away. The Parliament met four days last month and the only matters that were discussed were the passing away of a member. To overcome this sad state, the people need to be given the opportunity to select a new parliament.
According to the mandate given on January 8, President Sirisena swore-in his new cabinet only for 100 days. Even the prime minister said he has oxygen only till April 23. At the numerous discussions we had with the president, we stressed that this government has no right to continue any further. Due to the power struggle within the SLFP, President Maithripala is thinking in order to secure his position and also the leadership of the SLFP, he needs to weaken the Mahinda Rajapaksa group. There is no other reason for this parliament to be dragged on in this manner. That is the reason for the state of this country right now. The general election should be held immediately so that people have a chance to elect a new government. We are not the only ones who are saying this, even the Speaker was compelled to state that this parliament cannot continue in this manner.
Currently the government is UNP and SLFP and the opposition is SLFP, there is no difference between the two. What is the alternative JVP or Mahinda Rajapaksa?
Mahinda Rajapaksa will never be an alternative for the people. Why should he be the alternative? Mahinda Rajapaksa wants to come back not to take action against those who have committed crimes, but to protect them. Why should the Mahinda Rajapaksa regime that has been accused of murder come back? The Rajapaksa regime isolated this country internationally. How can Rajapaksa be an alternative when he funded those who created problems before the Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim people? All democratic institutions were crippled. All power was centralised within his family and supporters. Then how can such a person be an alternative to our country? If Mahinda Rajapaksa comes back it will result in a government that commits crimes, fraud, international isolation, disharmony between communities and the end of democracy, so then why should such a person be an alternative? Therefore, Rajapaksa will never be an alternative in Sri Lankan politics and he should not be brought back into politics, ever.
The situation within the parliament is ridiculous. According to the traditions of the parliament there is the party in power and the opposition. Parliament is the centre of democracy. There is a government and an opposition. And whatever proposals the government brings forth, the opposition has to critically analyse it and debate it so that these can be brought forward to the people. But what has happened today?
The Central Committee of the SLFP has decided that a certain number of people should sit on the government side and the others in the opposition. The treasurer of the SLFP is a minister of the government, the deputy chairman of the SLFP is a minister in the government, then another deputy chairman of the SLFP, Rajitha Senaratne is a minister in the government. The senior deputy chairman of the SLFP Nimal Siripala De Silva is the leader of the opposition. This is like the playhouse we had during our childhood where we decide who is the police and who are the thieves, who should hide and who should not. Today, parliament has also become like that. The SLFP Central Committee has decided that some of its members sit in the government and the others will be in the opposition. Then when one side proposes, the other side will question. So it is a ridiculous situation. What this country needs is not this ridiculous governance. What is Mahinda Rajapaksa’s political stance? What is Ranil Wickremesinghe’s position?
This country has to completely move away from this immoral and detrimental political journey. The country needs something completely new. We need not just the change of parties or people, but a complete policy change. A complete change in the political culture and a change in the economy, international relations, strengthen ties between Sinhala, Tamil, Muslims and all communities in the country where the rights of the people are protected, a change where basic values and morals are respected. That is the type of change that we need. There needs to be an alternative not only in parliament, but also outside and that is the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna. The JVP provides an alternative to bring forth a new system and complete change for the country.
The people were seeking for a great change. But do the people have a better life now?
First and foremost bringing down the Rajapaksa regime was a great achievement in Sri Lankan politics. There was a time that people were scared to speak to each other over the phone. People were scared to discuss their thoughts out in the open. If it were a businessman, they would be scared to speak to another person from a different political party Rajapaksa had the entire country enveloped in a culture of fear because the only way to survive was by instilling fear. Therefore, the fall of the Rajapaksa regime in Sri Lanka is seen as the advent of a period of freedom for everyone where there is a space to express ones thoughts freely. That space is very important, but the aspirations of the people of this country was not only to have that space, they also wanted employment, housing, access to good health services, education, efficient transport system and hope for their lives. What has happened now is that this government has failed to bring that hope to the people. We should never regret that the Rajapaksa regime was removed. That was extremely necessary, because now we have the true sense of freedom. The responsibility to take the country forward is not in the hands of Maithripala Sirisena or Ranil Wickremesinghe, but the forward thinking political forces that understand the aspirations of the people, civil society organisations should get together because that is what the people really want.
Maithripala Sirisena or Ranil Wickremesinghe cannot fulfill the wishes of the people. It is not only a matter of the individual though they have made this problem even greater. By removing Mahinda Rajapaksa if we put Ranil Wickremesinghe or Maithripala Sirisena it will be the same. In the past how many times have we played this game? The entire system has to change; it is not enough to merely change only the individual. Without changing the system we cannot seek a solution.
Within a very short period of time, this Ranil-Maithri coalition has proven that they too journey on the same path as of Mahinda Rajapaksa. It is for this reason that the people have become disappointed with them. Look at the way they are behaving with an election approaching. If they are behaving in this manner now, then how will they behave if they are in power for a longer time frame? In this short period of time the deals that they have made, appointments given to relations and friends as well as political appointments to state institutions are considerable.
The past few months should be a litmus test for the rule of Ranil and Maithri and they have failed that test. We should not allow them to govern this country any further.
We invite the people to move away from these traditional and old-style political parties and governing methods because the country needs a new and modern thinking political force. The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna is ready to be that force. But we cannot do this alone. We invite artistes, industrialists, businessmen, entrepreneurs, trade union representatives, farmers, fishermen, professionals and members of the media and everyone to join us and form this people’s force. Without this kind of force coming together, we will not be able to find a solution or stop the continuous destruction. Our thinking is that there has to be a total change in the system.
You are also a member of the National Executive Council?
The JVP proposed the National Executive Council as the thinking was to hold the general elections after 100 days of the presidential elections. There were many resolutions that had to be passed during this 100-day period; constitutional amendments, legal amendments, punishing those who have committed fraud and corruption, and relief for people with the reduction of prices. Those are the four main areas that were the responsibility of the National Executive Council. The objectives, responsibilities and even the name for the council were proposed by the JVP. It was never part of the government machinery. The government consists of the president, prime minister, Cabinet ministers and the party in power. The Council was completely out of the government machinery. The responsibilities assigned to it were clearly defined, it had a clear time-frame.
The National Executive Council has fulfilled its duties within the specified time-frame therefore, it is no longer functioning. After April 19, the Council has not met. We feel that it is no longer necessary to have the National Executive Council because the 19th Amendment has been passed, the responsibility of reforming the electoral system has been taken over by the president, investigations into fraud and corruption are taking place, the formulation of the right for information act has been completed by the Council and passing that is now the responsibility of the parliament. The National Executive Council has completed its functions and has been inactive for about one month now.
What are your thoughts on the 19th and 20th Amendments?
The 19th Amendment could have become a greater amendment than it is now. However, we were unable to make this an amendment that would increase the democratic right of the people as expected by them. There are some reasons for that; in our country the main reason for the decline in politics is the crossovers by individuals for personal gain, MPs and ministers can be bought for favours, money and portfolios. They have become similar to items that you purchase at the shops. To prevent this we proposed a very important amendment where if a person crosses over they cannot keep their ministerial post. This proposal was submitted to parliament, but we were not able to proceed any further. Why? Because the proposal has to be passed by the people who are doing the exact same thing. They will not pass an amendment that will punish them. As such this was removed from the 19th Amendment. We were able to clip the powers of the executive presidency. With a 2/3 majority our proposal was to remove all the powers of the executive presidency. But, for Maithripala Sirisena only, they kept certain powers intact. Due to the intentions of Maithripala Sirisena, Ranil Wickremesinghe and Mahinda Rajapaksa the 19th Amendment to the constitution could not reach its full potential.
If we look at the 20th Amendment, no one has a clear idea as to what it is. There was a discussion on the change in the election system. But what was approved at the cabinet meeting was not what we had discussed. Then something completely different has been gazetted. The electoral system is not the one that we discussed and it does not include any of our proposals. What is this 20th Amendment? Maithripala Sirisena is thinking that through this amendment he can weaken Mahinda Rajapaksa. By basing this system on electorates, if a current SLFP organiser resigns and contest from the Mahinda group he will have a very slim chance of winning. As such Maithripala Sirisena is thinking that through the electoral system he can minimise the number of people leaving the SLFP. That is the real intention behind this.
Maithripala Sirisena has not been very vocal regarding the changes in the 19th Amendment, because it is with this amendment that his powers are reduced. He has not yet said a word regarding the various bills that need to be passed. He is not interested in taking any action against those who murdered Lasantha Wickrematunga, those who assaulted Poddala Jayantha, kidnappers, those who killed people during protests at Rathupaswala, Chilaw and Katunayake, the murderers of Raviraj and Joseph Pararajasingham, Lalith Kumar Weeraraj and Kuhan Muruganathan, the perpetrators are walking freely. Maithripala Sirisena has no interest in taking any action. He has formulated an electoral system that goes beyond all of that. This is for nothing else, but to strengthen his position within the SLFP because there is a division in the party. There is an ulterior motive to bring in this new electoral system.
Currently we have a multi party political culture in Sri Lanka, but through this new amendment it will become a bi-party political situation. Through this new electoral system all those who are supporting other political parties will be forced to support one of the two main parties only. We ask the question, don’t we have the right to enter the parliament? What does real democracy mean? It means that there is more space for people who have different views to express themselves.
We have Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim communities in our country, we are yet to build good relationships between the two communities. Is it right to take away their opportunity for representation? The proposed electoral system has been designed to destroy this country. We have discussed with many parties and our stance is that the 20th Amendment that has been gazetted should be withdrawn immediately. Discussions should be initiated to implement a proper electoral system.
It seems like at the end of the day due to personal interests of politicians, it is the people that are to suffer. As a politician what can you say about this?
The people of this country should not feel disheartened. According to the political traditions of this country, the people vote for their representative and then the people merely become spectators. The people of this country have to stop being spectators. You too have to become an active member of this process. Without that, there is no sense of being disheartened or sad by the prevailing situation. The people have to be a partner in this process. If the people do not become active, then they will continue to be part of a culture where voters are bought with roof sheets, meals, alcohol or bribes. To change this situation the people have to become partners and they have to be active members of the process that will lead to a new political culture. Do not be disheartened, be active partners of this process.
The JVP has asked for suggestions from the people. What will be the position of the JVP for the general elections?
We have made many plans. In order to take our vision and thinking to the people, we have formulated a strong propaganda campaign. Many experts in this field have volunteered to help us. Even your organisation helped us in 2004. We have strengthened our propaganda machinery. Our ability to organise has always been our strength. We don’t have as much resources as other parties, but we have always had our organisational strength. We have completed the formulation of our election campaign. We are in the process of preparing a strong candidate list. Without telling the people what is happening now or complaining, we are talking about where we should take the country in the future, the direction and what frameworks and activities that need to be formulated in order to take the country forward. We are developing a national plan. The people have provided us with many ideas and suggestions. Therefore, we hope to present a strong candidate list and provide a clear vision and national plan for the country, for the forthcoming elections.
The JVP will contest on its own.
The JVP was at one time a very strong party. However in the past few years the party was in the background. How are you going to regain that strength again?
Soon after the end of the war when the victory was centralised around the Rajapaksas, all other political parties got caught to a massive tsunami. This affected not only the JVP, but other parties too. We should never underestimate or belittle the end of the war because it gave the much desired peace and freedom to the people of this country, both mentally and physically. This gave the Rajapaksas great strength, but in turn the other political parties faced a time of uncertainty.
Additionally there were incidents within the party that resulted in our supporters becoming disheartened with the JVP. But we believe that we have faced all these challenges, because any political movement never journeys on a straight line like an arrow. There will always be difficult times and differences in opinions. We are hopeful and optimistic that the JVP will become a strong movement of the people and we will be able to win. The strength of the JVP can never be diminished or underestimated. We may not have crowned ourselves with various accolades during the Rajapaksa regime, but we took the first step to remove them from power. We believe that we have to come into power through a broad people’s front and we are taking the first step in the upcoming general election. The JVP can be likened to an iceberg submerged in the ocean, more than what you see on the surface the hidden part is much more larger and greater. The JVP is not a movement that will be fazed by small winds or storms.
What are your thoughts for the business community as well as on international relations?
We believe that the prevailing mechanisms have to change. In Business Studies we learn about custom duties, but in the country we see evasion of custom duties. Then we learn about giving a pay slip for the salary to employees. But what is happening is that with the salary slip we give another payment in an envelope. We also learn about maintaining a cashbook, but today we maintain a second cashbook as well. The businesses we have today are not those that we learn about in our studies. Every business has been compelled to get involved in black activities to ensure their survival. No one can sustain their businesses by paying taxes or paying their staff in the proper manner.
We have to change this situation. We have a vision and a target and we are discussing this with the private sector of this country. We are talking with the construction industry on the target that we want to achieve in this industry by 2025. We tell them to invest in construction and engage in construction activities without any fear. Then, to the dairy industry too we have explained our target for 2025. In this manner we have communicated our target for a 10-15 year period. We are telling investors that they can invest without any fear or doubt. Today no one knows the direction or target of the government and the economy is floating in one place. We are proposing an economy with a clear direction.
Currently a businessman will engage in a business after making a vow in Kataragama, they will smash a coconut and also look at the auspicious time because they want to ensure that their venture will be a success. We will create an environment that is secure and stable for investors. That is the responsibility of the government.
Sri Lanka is not a country with a large source of natural resources. Our main resource is our land and the population density per one square kilometre is 343. Even in China, the country with the world’s largest population, the population density is 244 and in Australia it is three. But in Sri Lanka within a very small land mass there is a large population density. Our greatest resource is our people, we are not a country that has minerals or oil. We have a civilization that spans more than 2,600 years and especially with the introduction of Buddhism we had a good education system that was linked to the temples. We have to develop our human resources because they will then actively participate in the economy and thereby increase the production capacity of this country.
In 1978 Sri Lanka’s share in the global market was 0.5 today our share is 0.045. Our global market share has fallen by tenfolds. To import our requirements we need 20 billion dollars, what we receive from our exports is ten billion dollars. From where are we going to find that remaining ten billion dollars? We cannot continue in this manner. We have to regain our market share in the world economy. We have to decide what is the share we want in production, services, industry, agriculture and other sectors. We have to have a target and direction. We aim to bring down the trade balance to zero within a period of ten years. We have to find a new sector where we can earn the additional ten billion dollars. It is within that ten billion dollars that we will find new investment and the creation of new jobs. 100,000 graduates come out every year to join the government service. We have a clear-cut plan and vision to increase the market share of Sri Lanka in the world market.We had extensive discussions on this. We have taken into account and studied the many strategies used by countries all over the world. We have developed a very modern and practical economic policy that will ensure Sri Lanka’s participation in the global economy where we will be able to increase our global market share. We are ready to do that.
Many people think that the JVP is a very traditional political party. We are not traditional. It is the current rulers who are traditional. They are not interested in developing new ideas or concepts or even looking at new ways of driving the economy. We have an economic policy that will take this country forward with the rest of the world.
If we look at international relations, we know that in the world there is a power struggle. In 1990, before the socialist movement fell there were two opposing sides-the soviet led bloc and the US led bloc. After the 1990s, everyone started gravitating towards the USA and it became a US centralized global order. Today again there is a change where there are discussions to expel Russia from WTO as well as to impose sanctions on them. In Asia, China is seen as the new economic force. The thinking is that China will become the global economic leader by 2020. Our neighbour India is a strong player in the service sector of the global economy.
There are new camps in the global environment, as such as a political movement if we do not join hands with the rest of the world, we will have to live in isolation, but we cannot do so. This is not the Stone Age. We are proposing that Sri Lanka has to have good relations with all countries. We are in need of a good foreign policy. It should not be a policy of bribes, for example what happened was China was given Norochcholai to build, in the same manner in fear of India getting angry we gave them Sampur to build, then Hambantota Port was given to China and to India, KKS port; to China we gave the Matara-Beliatta railway to build, to India the Omanthai-KKS railway. This is not the kind of foreign relations that we want.
As a sovereign nation we need a policy that will safeguard our identity and where we can have pride in ourselves as a country. The JVP has a vision in that direction. We have a vision and to make it a success we need the support of the experts in this field. Some people think that the politician has to do everything. No, the politician has a vision, but to make it a reality he needs the assistance of the professionals of the respective fields.
The SLFP governs the country in one way and the UNP in another. The SLFP takes members of the UNP and governs the country. Then the UNP takes SLFPers and governs the country. Today both are governing the country together. During the past 67 years these two parties have governed this country in every possible manner. But what is the result? 0.5 percent of the country are drug addicts, that is for every 50 families there is a family member who is a drug addict. 0.5 percent of the population is in jail; that is for every 50 families there is a family member in jail. There are eight rapes recorded per day in this country. That is every three hours there is a woman being raped somewhere in the country. And they say there are more than what is reported. 108 people die each day due to heart disease. During the past 161 days 1,200 people have been killed due to road accidents. That is about eight people are killed per day due to motor vehicle accidents. Every year 300,000 people join the employment queue, the government sector recruits only 30,000, then last year in the private sector only 35,000 jobs were created. Our economy can only absorb 65,000 from the 300,000 who seek employment.
In our country there are 500 marriages per day in the same manner there are 200 divorces per day. In a year 72,000 marriages fail. Our country is an Asian country where husbands protect the wives and the wives are loyal to their husbands. What has happened to this country?
When there are 180,000 marriages per year they all need housing as well. But only 60,000 will inherit houses, the remainder need new houses. What is the policy? 320,000 enter Grade 1, but eventually only 25,000 go through for tertiary education. Then what happens to the remaining children? In our country, five million people enter the local hospitals from a population for 20 million. About 1,000 people enter the hospital due to animal bites. The past 67 years of rule by these two political parties have left us with this balance sheet. This shows that they are incapable and do not love the people. Their rule is all centered around their families and their supporters.
We want the people to think deeply about the economic and social situation in the country where a new economic direction that will bring benefits to everyone will be implemented and a new system has to be implemented. Listen to your conscience.
We guarantee that we will be able to bring the quality of life that everyone needs by bringing in a new thinking and direction. Macau has the longest life expectancy of 89 years. In Sri Lanka it is 76, we guarantee that if we are given the chance to rule this country for ten years then we will increase life expectancy by five years. We want to increase the years that a person will lives. We will work towards a better future for Sri Lanka.