Eighth Executive President | Daily News

Eighth Executive President

President Ranil Wickremesinghe was sworn-in as the Eighth Executive President before Chief Justice Jayantha Jayasuriya at the Parliamentary Complex.
President Ranil Wickremesinghe was sworn-in as the Eighth Executive President before Chief Justice Jayantha Jayasuriya at the Parliamentary Complex.

United National Party Leader and Acting President Ranil Wickremesinghe was recently sworn-in as the eighth Executive President of Sri Lanka before Chief Justice Jayantha Jayasuriya at the Parliament Complex for the remainder of the term of the ousted President heralding a new era for the country.

This was two months after he was appointed Prime Minister and subsequently Minister of Finance to bring the country back to normalcy following an unprecedented economic crisis that ever besieged the land which the previous President and his Cabinet of Ministers could not handle successfully.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe’s election by Parliament was a cakewalk for him 134 out of the 225 Members of Parliament voting for him and only 82 voting for his opponent chosen as a candidate for the sole purpose of the Opposition Leader to hide behind him, the third candidate contesting being just laughable.

The first Executive President was J. R. Jayewardene who was elected Prime Minister in 1977 the United National Party (UNP) he led scoring a five-sixth majority win at the General Election after barely two years of campaigning, capitalizing on the suffering people underwent experimenting with socialism.

President J. R. Jayewardene telescoped the 30-year Mahaweli Programme into only a few years bringing vast acres under cultivation of not only paddy but also export crops such as cantaloupe and watermelon and was instrumental in constructing a number of hydro-electricity schemes adding a considerable amount of power to the national grid.

President J. R. Jayewardene is wrongly accused of penalizing the July 1980 strikers whereas it was the Ministers who did not reinstate the workers who stopped work, some Ministers such as Ronnie de Mel taking in all those who struck work only one calling them beach crabs coming out of holes when the wave recedes getting in before it comes and threatening to close the holes only closing it for him.

It can be said that Tamil terrorism started with the claymore bombing that mercilessly killed 13 soldiers in 1983 as the country was progressing as never before under President J. R. Jayewardene and if not for the havoc wreaked by terrorist leader Prabhakaran the country would have gone forward magically.

The backlash in July 1983 was asked for by the terrorists to make use for perpetrating further unlawful acts putting the country though a 30 year-long period of destruction and even today irresponsible Tamil leaders masquerading as top professionals and intellectuals keep on adding fuel to the fire harping on so-called self-determination.

JR had so much power which he used for the benefit of the country and used to say that he could not only make a man a woman or a woman a man, most people wondering why he did constitutionally limit the tenure to two terms when Executive Prime Ministers’ number of terms was unlimited. Now it has been unmistakably proved that had not only him but also some of his successors been allowed to go on for more than two terms the country’s condition would have been different like in India where Executive Prime Minister Sri Jawaharlal Nehru ruled for one and a half decades developing the country immensely.

Nehru’s close friend Prime Minister S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike would have done much for the country if he was allowed to implement his Ten Year Plan 1956-1965 the main item of which making the country self-sufficient in rice was put into practice by Prime Minister Dudley Senanayake through his Green Revolution 1965-1970.

Nehru who worked sixteen hours a day died exhausted in office in 1964 of a stroke at the age of 74 years when asked by a reporter as to why as the leader of millions of Hindus he did not practise Hinduism quipped that he had no time and was only concerned about the scientific advancement of India!

Architects and builders of post-World War II West Germany Konrad Adenauer (1876-1967) Chancellor from 1949 to1963 and Ludwig Erhard (1897-1977) from 1963 to1966 were in their ripe old age when they served their country.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe too is fully equipped to serve his Motherland for many more years to come if the people choose to allow him to do so considering the fact that he took over the country at a most difficult time as a dauntless challenge. 

Add new comment