The international community was knocked for six when the media broke the news last Friday (26) that the President of Sri Lanka had downgraded the extant Premier and had designated former President as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka.
Nonetheless, the citizens of the country did not seem rising against the new political development in the country, instead were jubilant and celebrating the event despite their political allegiance, race, religion and ethnicity, except for a small disgruntled portion of the population.
It should be mentioned that the appointment of the new Premier, the former Executive President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa was made in accordance with the provisions of the constitution. Hence, it cannot be disapproved as unconstitutional. Since, the public did not make any uproar against the appointment; it cannot be called undemocratic too.
Peace prevailed in the country right throughout and neither any riot broke nor violence unleashed in any means against the appointment of the new Premier or the new Cabinet of Ministers.
As the incumbent monk of the Gangaramaya temple, Galaboda Gnanissara Thera sarcastically said “ People did not rise against the change. They were sleeping (indifferent), and I was sleeping (indifferent) too”.
Although the inhabitants of this country were least affected and bothered by the appointment of a new Premier, which precisely may be what the citizens of the country was wishing in their hearts, the international community seems to have affected largely.
Following the nullification of the Premier portfolio of MP Ranil Wickeremesinghe by the President by appointing a successor, he held a meeting with the diplomats including the high commissioners and ambassadors at his (former) official residence Temple Trees. However, it was not revealed to media the contents of the discussions albeit, according to the sources, the diplomats were reported to have pledged support to MP Wickremesinghe to remain in power and to quell the so called constitutional coup, which is not their remit.
Following the appointment of the new Premier on Friday (26), many countries issued travel advisories to their citizens who are to travel in Sri Lanka, which caused a drastic decline in the arrival of tourists in Sri Lanka, ramification of which were on the economy on the detrimental side. Nonetheless, country remains peaceful void of any predicted (by the international community) turmoil, except for insignificant political rallies.
On 31 October, several foreign envoys called upon the Speaker Karu Jayasuriya.
They were reported to have spoken in detail of the prevailing political scenario of the country. They had also stressed at the meeting with Speaker Jayasuriya that Sri Lanka can face sanctions and various other political pressures from the international arena, if the Wickremesinghe would not be reinstated in the position.
Jayasuriya has, during the meeting, requested the foreign envoy not to arrive at any hasty decision that would be detrimental on the country.
Meanwhile, United Kingdom’s Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt had stated in the House that they are on the continuous watch on Sri Lanka, and continue to recognize the ousted PM Wickeremesinghe as the legitimate Premier. He has emphasized that the above scenario can only be changed by a vote in Parliament.
However, the foreign intrusion into the affairs of this island nation is highly inappropriate as the country has its own mechanism of ruling as well as legally, democratically and constitutionally appointed rulers -President, Prime Minister and the Cabinet of Ministers, to keep the country stable and functioning.
The international community must bear in mind that the appointment of the Premier is constitutional and it is by no means a “coup”.
The latest political developments, however, has not resulted in a stalemate and the new government has already started their administration in a more people oriented manner, by giving more concessions on consumer goods. So, it’s apparent that the new Government would live up to the expectation of the public. Therefore, the citizens of Sri Lanka would not need to change the newly formed government under any circumstance.
It is high time that the international community should follow suit the foreign policy of China, which clearly stated last week that, international interference into the internal matters pertaining to this country is inappropriate and the country should be left free of unwanted intervention.
Sri Lanka is a sovereign nation which is not required to act in accordance with the whims and fancies of the foreign countries. International community should be ashamed of interfering with the internal matters regarding Sri Lanka.
It is morally not right to interfere into the intimate and internal problems of our neighbours and it is applicable to the international community regarding a country.
Thwarting the international interference into our internal matters is important as the international community can embroil Sri Lanka into chaos to serve their ulterior motives.