The Political Prisoner Nonsense

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2017-02-08

By Bandara


Now thank we all our God
For sending Hitler to us;
From Germany's fair land
To clear away the rubbish
We've done with the old ways
The new paint's spick and span
So thank we all our God
Who sent us such a man

The house was far too old
It let in wind and weather.
We'd soon have had to build
A new one altogether
We thought the house would fall
Its rottenness was plain
But Hitler paints it all
So it stands firm again

There's hunger everywhere
And no bread in the larder
We had no clothes to wear
When first we saw our Leader
If we were still more tired
And hungrier today
He'd feed the multitude
With a single truss of hay

The rich possess the bread
The poor are almost fainting,
O, Merciful Godhead
We sorely need repainting
Lest the poor man should think
His hunger pangs to still
And fall upon the rich
At last to eat his fill

But when our Hitler comes
He will redecorate us
Let each stay rich or poor
According to his status
He'll see that class remains
But never leads to hate
He'll make sure that it rains
But nobody gets wet
He'll make the vinegar sweet
And make the sugar sour
From cracks in the concrete
He'll make a lofty tower
He'll paint the filth and rot
Until it's spick and span
So thank we all our God
For sending us this man

Bertolt Brecht – Hitler Chorale

A Bertolt Brecht poem came to mind when a leader in a revolutionary party, sometime ago, shook the party to its root and went to obtain refuge at Medamulana under Mahinda, reminding me of Prince Panchayudha to whom Tibetan national Mahinda Thera went recently to obtain refuge alias Wimal Weerawansa who has a visharadha knowledge regarding international conspiracies in Sri Lanka.


This former minister who knows nothing about Guy de Maupassant and Ernest Hemingway, who has never in his life climbed the rock of Sigiriya is now in remand prison.


Whatever anyone says, Wimal Weerawansa's propaganda strategies are excellent. Simply because of that, as soon as he was remanded he observed Sil and began counting the beads on the nawagunawela and became a great devotee. He obtained large scale publicity on media saying "Wimal observes Sil in prison." However, Wimal's wife Shashi Weerawansa had told the media that Wimal had never ever observed Sil subsequent to getting married. That was when the guerilla marketing falsehood collapsed. Then he spread a rumour that he is writing a book while in remand prison.


Then he tried to bring forward his daughter and attempted to obtain the shocking sensitivity of society. On this occasion the Magistrate had presented a wonderful explanation. She had declared that a father being remanded and leaving the house is a very sensitive issue to any child. Here a question arose in the hearts of people who witness reality.


Aren't the children of Prageeth Ekneligoda, the journalist who disappeared, children? Don't tears still fall from their eyes...? Aren't the children of Antony of Negombo children....? Aren't the children of Lasantha Wickrematunga, children...? Isn't Wasim Thajudeen someone's son...? Isn't the student who died at Rathupaswela a child...? Didn't Roshen Chanaka have parents....? Didn't they have relatives...? Was Roshen a biogenetic in this world?


Such thousands of mentioned and unmentioned facts arose in the hearts of the people. As stated in the poem by Bertolt Brecht, in the case of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution, the hearing of cases regarding the former Chief Justice in Parliament to many lawless, dilemmas which put pressure on the people, Wimal Weerawansa made vinegar taste sweet. He made sugar taste sour. He built a 'tower' using cracked concrete. He painted over all heaps of rubbish and brought about brightness in order to make the eyes of the people go blind.


Lies and falsehoods


The talent that Wimal Weerawansa has to see a non-beneficial side of any beneficial thing and distort the minds of people by making them believe lies and falsehoods, is excellent. A very simple example is, when the project to provide a service free of charge to the public using the ambulances received through Indian assistance, Wimal screamed at the top of his voice and told the people, "Here is the conspiracy of the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe partnership. The RAW spies of India are coming to this country under cover of these ambulances. Now, the nudity of the Indian invasion has begun to show." He created a huge unpatriotic bogey man and distorted the minds of the people severely. He shouted out that the people would take to the streets in protest against the ambulance service. He depicted these ambulances as a dangerous dragon coming to our country to swallow it up. Finally there was no dragon and not even a cat. These ambulances are supplying free of charge a very significant public service through a group of our Sri Lankan employees.


Wimal has been remanded according to the valid law of Sri Lanka. It is reported that these days the "B" report has come to light and it accuses legally the former minister of having obtained 40 vehicles on rent while he was minister, through the State Engineering Corporation and distributed them amongst his friends and associates as well as relatives, illegally and causing a loss of Rs 41 million to the government.


In addition to the misuse of vehicles, the other accusations targeting Wimal Weerawansa are while he was the Minister of Housing, he granted houses in Government Housing Schemes to his relations, friends and associates for next to nothing. It is reported that all facts are being gathered regarding this. According to the media these are two examples of the lawlessness, misconduct and malpractice engaged in by Wimal Weerawansa. The facts as publicized by the media are as follows:

He has given house No. 10 of the Mattegoda Housing Scheme to his younger brother Ananda Priyadharshana. The value of this house is close to ten million rupees. But the payment made has been Rs 1 million, which is ten per cent of the estimated value, according to media reports. At the same time house No. 35 in the Kahatuduwa Housing Scheme has been given for Rs 2 million to one of his brothers-in-law P. W. Rupasinghe. However, media reported that the house had been valued at Rs 9.8 million. These are only two instances, where Weerawansa was accused of wrongdoing, which were reported in media. There are many more such instances in the list.


Colleagues of lawless gangs voice their opinion that a person accused of misusing State property is a political prisoner. How can persons who stole millions of rupees of public money become political prisoners?


Just because a politician is accused of an unpatriotic, anti-social action he does not become a political prisoner. Winning the title of political prisoner is not something that can be done easily. Even though Botha's Government in South Africa kept Nelson Mandela in prison for 26 years they did not accept that Mandela was as a political prisoner.


The British Government did not recognize the leaders of the Indian struggle for Independence such as Sri Nehru, Subhas Chandra Bose as political prisoners. Robert Brownrigg of the British Government beheaded our own heroes Keppetipola and Madugalle by branding them officially under the Colonial Government as terrorist conspirators.


During the 1971 rebellion, leaders, the youth as well as Rohana Wijeweera were not recognized by Minister of Justice Felix Dias Bandaranaike of the then United Front Government, as political prisoners. Then the Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Justice, Nihal Jayawickrema said that because they are terrorist criminals, the government is not prepared to treat them as political prisoners.


Finally, the prisoners at the Magazine Prison who got down books to read and write engaged in a fast unto death. Seven days after the commencement of the fast when Wijeweera and others fell on to their death beds unconscious and Nihal Jayawickrema had to visit the prison. Wijeweera was brought to the discussion with the Permanent Secretary, carried on a stretcher.


Wimal Weerawansa even now has the freedom to write books while in Remand Prison. From there he has the facilities to address the people on political stages. He has facilities to 'market' his life in prison. Therefore, fasts are not required this time.

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