‘SL will implement home-grown solution’
conspiracy against Sri Lanka is nothing new. It was hatched by some
Western countries when the government was involved in the humanitarian
operation to free innocent civilians held as human shield by the LTTE.
These outside forces strongly believed that the LTTE could not be
annihilated by the heroic Security Forces. They tried their best to
divide the country and failed, thanks to the strong leadership given by
President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Sri Lanka can be proud of the Geneva
outcome, because Sri Lanka secured 15 votes with another eight countries
supporting us by abstaining from voting. All this in spite of the
tremendous pressure exerted by the strongest country in the world, said
Disaster Management Minister Mahinda Amaraweera in an interview with the
Following are the excerpts:
Q: How do you
interpret the Geneva vote?
A: The Geneva
vote is nothing new because, from the beginning we knew that some
Western and European countries launched a conspiracy against Sri Lanka.
We got to know this not during the Geneva UNHRC but long before, on the
day we launched the humanitarian operation against the LTTE. At that
time the same elements used various tactics to turn the operation back,
but President Mahinda Rajapaksa did not give in to their pressures, and
continued with and ended the conflict.
Disaster Management Minister Mahinda Amaraweera
Now, we have to encounter the jealousy of these countries that
strongly believed the LTTE will win and the Sri Lankan Armed Forces will
lose. They took the view that the Sri Lankan government should give in
to LTTE terrorism and divide the country. On the other hand, Sri Lanka
can be very proud of the Geneva result, because in the midst of strong
pressure from the strongest country in the world, Sri Lanka secured 15
votes and another eight countries supported us by abstaining from
This resolution is not a problem at all because Sri Lanka will
continue to implement its home grown solution as planned. We do not act
according to the demands of another country, but in our own way. It is a
programme planned by the Sri Lankan government long before the Geneva
UNHRC to share power and address the problems faced by the different
ethnic groups. The Sri Lankan government did it with the sincere
objective of solving the problem. Certain parts of it have already been
implemented and the rest will continue.
Q: What do you think
of a road map that aimed at assisting and supporting LTTE victims in
addition to the compensation and other relief granted to them by the Sri
A: They all
talk about the number of LTTE terrorists killed during the
confrontation; but nobody mentions the victims of the LTTE which are in
thousands. Many lost their lives, and families have been left without
breadwinners. Some lost their eyes, limbs etc, while some others lost
their entire families.
How about them? Who talks about them apart from the Sri Lankan
government which paid them compensations and looked after them? What
about the funds collected from the Tamil people by the LTTE Diaspora?
The LTTE destroyed the lives of all ethnic groups, not only Sinhalese
The Diaspora should at least look after the Tamil people who lost
lives, eyes, limbs and properties because of the LTTE, without trying to
fund foreign politicians and INGOs to divide the country. It is their
duty because the Diaspora money comes from the Tamil people.
Q: What will be the
future of the crusade against Sri Lanka launched by the LTTE supporters
worldwide, and their agents?
A: Even though
we completely defeated the LTTE within Sri Lanka and put a full stop to
terrorism, the LTTE foreign network is very much intact and active. It
is clear the LTTE is raising its ugly head again at the International
level. The best example is the Geneva resolution. After Sri Lanka lost
the vote some INGOs and NGOs appreciated some foreign countries by
presenting them with bags of currency notes and throwing grand parties.
They will continue their 'project’ aimed at dividing Sri Lankan into
two, like Sudan. The 'project’ will continue from foreign lands and they
will try to create instability and anarchy within the country to collect
more funds and get outside 'help’ for their 'operation’.
But I state very clearly President Rajapaksa will never let terror
raise its head again, and the UPFA government will never let anybody
grab power, using weapons. Power can only be achieved through free and
fair elections. Sri Lanka is a democracy where regular free and fair
elections are held. Elections are open to all, anybody can contest and
win. This is a five star democracy and it is right here in Sri Lanka.
Q: How does past,
present and future behaviours of the Opposition political parties make
an impact on solving the ethnic issue?
A: The political leaders in the Opposition have not understood their
responsibility yet. While the Geneva UNHRC sessions were going on and
the crucial vote was taking place, the Opposition Leader went to the
North and took photographs standing opposite the mansion of Prabhakaran.
While travelling on carpeted roads constructed by the government,
drinking water provided by the government and using electricity provided
by the state he questioned, where is the Northern Spring?(Uthuru
Wasanthaya). But the people from the South have already travelled to the
North and seen for themselves the Northern Spring. He was addressing the
crowd in Geneva by posing that question from the North.
Meanwhile the TNA is now trying to achieve the LTTE objectives using
a different strategy because they could not do it through the war. It is
a dream that will never come true. The ordinary Tamil community does not
have this dream, that is why political parties break into pieces and get
The Opposition Leader understands he will never be able to come into
power and sit on the state leader’s chair. He expects to gain power
through an outsider, as in some Arab and other countries. He is waiting
for outside elements to bring him the 'spring’ by chasing away the
democratically elected leader of the country.
Q: What are the
responsibilities of the Sri Lankan government and the general public on
protecting the motherland from various types of invasions?
A: The Sri
Lankan government is acting most responsibly and the issue has been
discussed in the Cabinet, during the meeting of government MPs, the SLFP
Central Committee meeting, etc. The government is educating the public
on the issues and its future strategy.
The public should shed all petty differences and join hands with the
programme. There is no election scheduled in the near future. The public
can express their wish during the election, but right now all Sri
Lankans should get together and push forward our home grown solution
without letting outside elements to interfere in our internal affairs.
Q: What is the
responsibility of the Sri Lankan mass media in finding a solution to the
A: The mass
media has a very big responsibility. We have to thank the media for the
support extended by them during the humanitarian operation because it
accelerated the victory. But the conduct of some media is not
They supported the West and Europe. Their action encouraged some
countries to vote against Sri Lanka during UNHRC, Geneva. We are aware
that some media institutions have their own political agendas.
However, as regards the safety and dignity of the motherland, they
must act accordingly without thinking about their political goals. The
government needs a strong Opposition, an opposition media to point out
the government’s shortcomings. Constructive criticism is necessary. But
the Opposition and the media should not act against the motherland. They
should put the country first.
Q: In what level is
Sri Lanka’s ability of facing natural disasters, at present?
A: The country is now achieving fast development after the conclusion
of the humanitarian operation. The main hazards against the rapid
development process are the numerous natural disasters occurring
suddenly and from time to time, in the form of floods, droughts,
landslides, lightning, etc…The government and the Disaster Management
Ministry has already established a mechanism to face natural disasters
and manage them.
My main objective is turning this ministry into an idle ministry in
the future by strengthening the prevention of natural disasters.
All possible steps will be taken to prevent natural disasters such as
floods and landslides. We have already implemented a floods prevention
programme in the Colombo city at a cost of Rs. 8,500 million. The
project was launched with aid given by the World Bank, in coordination
with the Defence Ministry. This year Jaffna, Dambulla and Panadura will
be covered by similar projects. With the completion of these projects
floods can be prevented in the future.
Cabinet approval has already been granted for a 50 million US $
project for landslide prevention. With the completion of this project we
can protect the hill country area prone to landslides.
Q: What have you to
say about the various insurance schemes available for the public on
A: We are holding discussions with Insurance Companies to let
the people insure with us and obtain the claim from the company and give
it to the people when natural disasters strike and destroy their homes
The government is focused on assisting the needy and not the rich who
own enterprises. Some people tell us natural disasters totally destroyed
their factory, office etc…but it is up to them to obtain insurance cover
because they are capable of paying high premiums. They are not like the
poor who cannot afford to pay the premium.
Sri Lanka is one of the countries in the world with the least number
of insurance. There are very few life policies because our health
service is free of charge and of high quality. In other countries health
services are not free of charge and the public have to pay for health
care services. In Sri Lanka anyone can get admitted to a state hospital
free of charge and obtain treatment. We have to educate the people on
how to spend less money on insurance policies and get the maximum
Q: Why do you consider
dengue as a natural disaster and how would you assist to control dengue?
ministry or any other ministry cannot work alone. We have to work
together as Cabinet ministers. The President is the leader and we all
work as a team and hold equal responsibility. We cannot ignore issues
saying they do not come under the purview of our ministry. I identified
dengue as a natural disaster and decided to contribute maximally towards
the Health Ministry’s dengue control programme. We have already issued
instructions to all our officers throughout the country to support the
programme and provide required resources.
Dengue took away many precious lives and has become a major threat.
My ministry will continue to support the Health Ministry’s dengue
Q: Do you have any special message for the Sri Lankan public
at this juncture?
A: The Sri Lankan public should not fear the Geneva
resolution. There are no economic sanctions, or the arrival of foreign
armed forces, etc. because of the Geneva resolution. Recently people
feared a possible end of the world in 2012 and started to lead a joyful
life thinking the world will end by 2012. But it is not true. Similarly,
Sri Lanka has a very clear programme and we will not let outside
elements interfere in our internal affairs. The US and some other
countries carry out these conspiracies because of their knowledge of
future economic trends. By 2021 the Asian economy will lead the world
and Sri Lanka will be in the forefront. This has been predicted by US
China has progressed and so will India. But in the West and in
Europe, there is no economic growth. They record minus economic growth
and are facing a financial crisis. But in Asia, we have plus economic
growths and do not face any economic crisis. All Asian countries record
beyond five percent economic growth. This is why the US wants to attack
Asian countries buy oil from Iran. All Asian countries have realized
this. We, the Asian countries should be united and strong. Then the
world will be ruled by Asia and not by US or the West in the future.
Therefore we request the people not to listen to or believe rumours
spread by evil elements, and join hands with the government to push the
We have to minimize our imports and maximize exports. We have to
develop our family, village and country without listening to the
Opposition which tries to fish in troubled waters.