Former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa said the current government has failed to identify the real challenges facing the country and instead had made the defaming of Mahinda Rajapaksa as its only challenge and objective.
Addressing a meeting in Gampaha town organised by the Siyane Vidvath Sansadaya Scholars’ organization through Skype from US, he said the previous government had a visionary leadership to identify the real challenges which were highlighted in the Mahinda Chinthana Programme. He pointed out that the Mahinda Rajapaksa government had an able team to achieve its goals and that they took steady decisions.
“The basic problem facing the government is its failure to take right decisions for want of a visionary leadership. The government has been led astray by western ideologies and the lopsided policies of International organizations including the World Bank and the IMF. We must follow the footsteps of developed countries including Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, South Korea, Vietnam, Japan and China never depended on the Western block. Japan, despite its close relations with the west, upheld its culture and protected its sovereignty.”
Mr. Rajapaksa said the public service had been crippled as a result of the actions of the Government.
“The public service is an integral part of administration. The country’s public service had declined for several years. We identified the able officials and empowered them to take independent decisions. We obtained their services for the benefit of the country. The public service should be uplifted under short term and long term projects as a part of the country’s development effort. A mechanism should be worked out to retain the services of Sri Lankan expatriates. Effective training programmes and formal recruitment procedures should be implemented,” he said adding that the halting of infrastructure projects in villages has resulted in an irreparable economic loss to the island.
“Well improved infrastructure facilities should be provided to develop the country. Several projects inaugurated by Mahinda Rajapaksa government have grounded to a halt. There is a Chinese adage, “A road should be constructed if a village is to be developed”. We have experienced how difficult areas could be developed by providing infrastructure facilities. Development is often centralized in the western province and that disparity resulted in insurrections. With this in view we developed infrastructure facilities in Hambantota and Monaragala districts. The Hambantota harbour and the airport brought about a rapid development in the district. The present government has abandoned these development projects for the last three years on false pretexts causing irreparable loss to the country’s economy.”
Mr. Rajapaksa however, admitted that the previous government possessed flaws, and the need of the hour was to change the political culture in the country.
“The previous government didn’t do a perfect job. It should be admitted that there were flaws. We have identified them and we should rectify them. During the north-east war the people were subject to hardship. However, it was a great achievement that we could end it within three years. The need of the hour is a new political culture and all those concerned including politicians, administrators, public servants, business community and the Rana Viru personnel should put their heads together and achieve that object,” he said.