There is still much doubt in the minds of Sri Lankans about their future here in the island despite there being a regime change and a new president; elected by parliament.
This is a country where most television stations set aside some time every week for astrologers to appear in their programmes and make predictions about the future. But still, despite all that, Sri Lankans, in general, cannot see beyond the couple of months left in this calendar year.
Dead bodies of youth being washed ashore quite frequently, the Aragalaya losing its drive after the new president took office and most recently the Chinese ship named Yuan Wang 5 docking at the Hambantota Port forces us to ponder ‘what’s next’.
The new cabinet of President Ranil Wickremesinghe sees almost all of the old faces in politics back and holding prestigious portfolios. There is much canvassing for posts and favours and it seems the old game has started. If people are to have new hope then this existing system must change. Despite there being a new cabinet the present regime cannot deny the accusations made regarding workers at the Sapugaskanda refinery being paid Rs 2.5 billion as overtime during a period where the facility was closed for operations.
Many critics of the present political system only found former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa as the main wrongdoer and celebrated his resignation and exit from the country. But people today are conveniently getting about their work preferring to be passive observers of the new regime after the aragalaya (people’s struggle) failed. Critics must find their voices again so that they are heard and counted when they organise themselves once again and revive the peaceful struggle. These protesters must realise that hope can only be harboured if the seasoned parliamentarians or in other words the ‘old brigade’ is taken out of the equation. These lawmakers have only served themselves and sowed the seeds of doubt in the minds of the public.
Life must go on till then and business must boom in areas like tourism. Education must commence from where it stopped. Much study time was lost during the pandemic. Then came the scarcity of fuel; which forced school days to be limited. We have much hope when our children go to school and are educated inside the classroom.
But then, there are occasions when education remains a puzzle unsolved. Children are getting ready to sit for the scholarship exam this November. But parents watching television in the morning these days can see one mathematics guru promoting his workshops and also encouraging students to sit for the year five scholarship exam. Another channel, airing a programme during the same time of the day, makes us hear the wise words of a professor, employed at a local university, who affirms that this scholarship exam is the cause of some of the ills in education and must be done away with. The professor featured in the latter programme states that parents must keep faith in the saying ‘the closest school is the best school’. But at any debate about the scholarship exam there are academics who promote this ‘hurdle’ while there are others who vehemently oppose it.
This country needs a new system of governance. We need a new set of politicians who have no records of being corrupt. We need better systems in education, state institutes, transport, banking and finance and foreign service; which promises fair treatment to all and eliminates doubt when a customer goes there to get a job done.
Even if much of what’s desired is put in place with a proper system being established there is one thing which demands fairness when implemented and that is the law of the country. This is because, still, only the small ‘fish’ get caught and the big ‘fish’ slip away when both these parties are summoned by the law enforcement authorities for a offence of similar nature. It’s not an exaggeration when we say that we are confused at times as to how the law operates in this country.
Disclaimer: In search of a system that eliminates doubt - Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect Latheefarook.com point-of-view