While we congratulate the President Mahinda Rajapakse for the victory in the Parliament to pass the 18th Amendment to the Constitution with more than a two third majority, we wish him further success, after fortifying the executive Presidency , to lead the country on the path of development with the ability to overcome all obstacles he is sure to encounter.
Nevertheless, as appropriate we question the President on a matter distasteful to all decent people of this country who respect the President and have placed their trust and confidence in him. It would be appreciated if the President could explain why he did not take seriously the accusation levelled against Mr.Mervyn Silva, a member of his government for humiliating a government officer by tying him to a tree. The justification given by Mervyn Silva as enacting a drama being too clumsy an excuse.
The disciplinary action that the SLFP, had taken against the said Mr.Silva was a farce. Mr.Silva’s defence that it was only an enactment of a drama should not have been accepted.
In that sense the SLFP disciplinary inquiry against Mr.Mrvyn Silva had also been a drama to satisfy the public, as much as that enacted by Mervyn Silva tying a Government Officer to a tree. If it had been a drama that fact should have been informed before tying the Officer to the tree. Immediately following regrettable incident there was a protest march against it, and that was not a part of the main drama.
The SLFP disciplinary Committee as well as Mr.Mervy Silva take the people of this country for fools to believe their manoeuvres to whitewash Mr.Silva for the condemnable act hecommitted.
The silence of the President on the matter and reappointing Mr.Mervyn Silva back to the post of Deputy Minister of transport without demanding him to make a public apology to the government officer humiliated, in the presence of television cameras, leaves a bad taste, and leaves many questions unanswered.
An honourable discharge by a disciplinary Committee of the SLFP or even by a court of law does not absolve a man from the wrong committed against another human being humiliating and degrading him in the presence of the public. Mr.Mermyn Silva’s version of the matter is not acceptable to the people of the country.
That was definitely a violation of human rights of a government officer. Law and discipline apart Mr.Silva should have been at least publicly reprimanded by the President or by the SLFP leadership for his very high handed treatment of a Government Officer. Incidentally that is not the first time that Mr. Silva was involved in questionable behaviour unbecoming of a Deputy Minister.
Mr.Mervyn Silva being a member of the President Mahinda Rajapakse’s government, the President cannot absolve himself of the responsibility for the insolent action of his Deputy Minister.
Mr. Silva certainly has a psychological problem, and every responsible persons in the government and the SLFP acted in this matter not to give justice to a wrong done to a person , but to treat the matter in a way which would clear Mr.Silva of blame, in this most deplorable act to enable the President to appoint him back to the post from which he was unceremoniously removed to dupe the people.
Mr.Silva is definitely not a person loved or loveable , but a person feared and unloved. He is a person who infuses fear, and one does not know to what extent he would go against some one who does a wrong or even to person who tries to point out that he is wrong. Its is strange that such a person could do any criminal act and getaway with it.
Mr.Silva may perhaps be a good person given to erratic behaviour, but that does not mean he should not at least be told publicly by his peers, that he should act differently at least when dealing with Government Officers.
The Government officers are bound by Official regulations under which they are recruited. And any disciplinary action against a government officer should be conducted according to the laid down disciplinary rules.
This most ugly deplorable affair brings discredit to the President. Does it mean that any one around the President can do any criminal or immoral act with impunity ?
That would be a weakness on the part of the President if he allows Mervyn Silva to go scot free for what he had done. We very well saw in the television report with the man tied to a tree Mervyn Silva was not enacting a drama.
It is not difficult for Mr.Mervyn Silva, being what he is to get an affidavits from witnesses to justify his reprehensible act by sending three or four of his thugs. Mervyn Silva’s behaviour is not that of a decent man, let alone a Deputy Minister. He was behaving like a street rowdy.
A government Officer cannot be used to perform dramas to please the whim and fancy of a Deputy Minister.
In this Mervyn Silva episode the President is as much to be blamed as the shameless Deputy Minister. If Mr.Mervyn Silva is not made to publicly apologise for his criminal act, at least the President himself should do it on behalf of the Deputy Minister.
That will at least teach Mervyn Silva a lesson to behave differently in the future.