Rejected MPs should have no place in the National List … and the MPs who did Best

ShenaliShenali Waduge

If a government is supposed to be by the people and for the people why should MPs who have been rejected by the people be brought back into Parliament through the backdoor using the provision of the national list. What a mockery when parties hand over their individual national lists with names before election only to replace these names to accommodate shock defeats of MPs who have been rejected by the people. It is an affront to the names already given by parties when names are removed to include the names of MPs whom the people have rejected. What is the point in claiming to be following good governance when all political parties are guilty of bringing rejected MPs through the backdoor? These are politicians who know they cannot go before the people and win votes but somehow wriggle their way to enjoy 5 years of parliamentary privileges at the cost of the tax payers!

Sri-Lanka-presidential-polls odishasuntimes.com

More often than not these rejected politicians who come through the backdoor without people’s mandate are given strategic portfolios too. Given that they have no clue as to what the common man’s needs are nor do they even care, the damage they do with their portfolios become irreversible.

In the history of the national list we can be proud of only one man’s entry without contesting election and that is the choice of late Lakshman Kadiragamar who did justice to being made an MP and Foreign Minister without having to contest elections. All others have done more damage than good.

Nowhere else in the parliamentary systems being practised is such malpractice taking place where rejected MPs some needing to be sent on retirement due to being over 75 years still clinging on to power and being accommodated through the national list which originally was meant to accommodate people of outstanding contribution to society.

However, instead of people of integrity being inducted the 29 seats of the national list has become a highway for the entry to all rejected MPs and old fossils.

Ideally the national list should be scrapped completely because people of integrity and those that contribute to society can be invited as advisors to committee level stages when bills are being drafted to obtain their inputs. Intellectuals do not need to be turned into politicians they can be tapped as per their expertise depending on the need by Parliament and a pool of such eminent persons can be given to the Speaker by the different political parties.

The national list is a violation of the voters rights given in the Constitution for 29 people are turned into politicians from the back door and adding further injury to the voters is to have MPs whom they rejected to be brought back in and given strategic portfolios as well.

This is a violation of the voter’s fundamental rights. The election commissioner must take a call as should the Attorney General.

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The Manape : Amazing rise in popularity of some MPs

The preferential votes is an interesting feature in view of the astronomical rise in manape for only one party. The comparison of preferential votes in 2010 and 2015 highlights a surge in popularity and it is interesting to find out on what grounds they have become so popular amongst the masses.

Registered voters were 15,044,490 in 2015

Registered voters were 14,088,500 in 2010

Difference = 955,990 (additional voters by 2015 since 2010)

Highlighted in yellow are the astronomical rise of preferential votes from 2010 to 2015

All UNP 2010 manape 2015 manape
Ranil Wickramasingha 230,957 500,566
Akila Viraj Kariyavasam 66476 286,755
Ranjan Ramanauyaka 59318 216,463
Harin Fernando 49,073 200,806
Lakshman Kiriella 53,690 199,046 
Arjuna Ranatunga 27,796 (DNA) 165,890 (UNP)
Gayantha Karunatilake 49,945 149,573
Rajitha Senaratne 66,710 (UPFA) 142,186 (UNP)
Ajith Perera 48,588 131,383
Sujeewa Senasinghe 52,559 117,049 
P Harison 24,675 113,346
Sajith Premadasa 74467 112,645
Rauff Hakeem 54,047 102,186
John Amarathunga 52331 83,070
Buddhika Pathirana 62,499 98,815
Mangala Samaraweera 59,836 96,092

Notice the marginal changes

  2010 manape 2015 manape
Wimal Weerawansa 280,672 313,801
Dayasiri Jayasekera 132,949 (UNP) 133,532 (UPFA)
Rishard Bathurdeen 27,461 26,291
Vijayakal Maheswaran 7160 13,071

Note: Both Rishard & Vijayakala have been peddling divisive and separatist ideology throughout but the lack of support shows that the people do not care for such and questions why media gives them undue media space to project a different version to the masses. The media has a bigger role to play than playing politics themselves. Even Sambanthan the TNA leader has received just 33,834 votes which again shows that the Tamil people do not view him or the TNA as their leaders.

The other surprise exit of course is Field Marshal Gen. Sarath Fonseka together with his family who contested under the Democratic Party. He obtained 98,456 votes at the 2010 General Elections but has not been able to even secure a seat in the 2015 Parliament.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe’s 500,566 votes from a total Colombo district vote of 640,743. 78% gave one preference to Ranil Wickremasinghe.

However, former President Mahinda Rajapakse who received 423,529 votes from 474,124 votes claims the highest percentage of preference with 89%.

Looking back what is also interesting is that President Maithripala Sirisena received only 90,118 votes in the 2010 General Elections but as Presidential Candidate in 2015 January he received 62lakhs of votes.

Looking at the 2015 preferential votes against the 2010 it is interesting to know on what grounds the popularity of those highlighted have suddenly soared.

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1 Comment

Filed under accountability, democratic measures, governance, parliamentary elections, power politics, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society

One response to “Rejected MPs should have no place in the National List … and the MPs who did Best

  1. Pingback: Key Issues in the North-South Divide in Lanka: Then …. and NOW | Thuppahi's Blog

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