By Anura Balasuriya reporting from Trincomalee
The only thing the incumbent government did was to talk, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa said yesterday. It was trying to cover up its failure by blaming others, he added.
Addressing a mammoth Joint Opposition (JO) rally at the Town Hall grounds in Trincomalee, the former President said not a single day passed without the government blaming him for something or other.
JO supporters converged on the Town Hall grounds, braving inclement weather.
Every sector, be it economic, political, or foreign affairs, was in utter chaos. The government is planning to introduce a new Constitution to do away with the unitary status of the country, said Rajapaksa. “All economic resources are being sold to foreigners. The entire national economy will be handed over to foreign powers through pacts such as the ETCA (Economic and Technological Cooperation Agreement.”
The government has found fault with all sections of the society including the Maha Sangha, teachers, doctors, farmers, labourers, students and war heroes. State intelligence officers were being thrown behind bars for having saved the country from terrorists. “Not a single day passes without a protest against the government. People are resentful. The government uses force to suppress dissent. It unleashes police on protesters.”
The government was trying to appease the anti-national forces by hauling up war heroes before a war crimes tribunal, former President Rajapaksa said.
“Today, there are many leaders, yet there is none to make a decision. The government has neither a single vision nor a single plan. It has three Cabinet spokesmen. Sri Lanka is the only country in the world with three Cabinet spokesmen. They give three different versions of the same issue. The government cannot even distribute subjects among the ministries. People are left with no one in authority to turn to.”
The government was entangled in a mess. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe promoted the UNP vision while the President who had been the SLFP General Secretary for 13 years was trying to promote SLFP policies. There was a mess.
Joint Opposition leaders Dinesh Gunawardena, Wimal Weerawansa, Udaya Gammanpila, Wimalaweera Dissanayake, Dullas Alahapperuma and Vasudeva Nanayakkara also addressed the rally.