President Maithripala Sirisena has failed the people and ruined his own political future, and the United National Party is likely to win power since the former President is returning with many undesirables — were among a range of comments received in the recently-concluded joint poll by the Business Times and the Research and Consultancy Bureau. [...]

The Sunday Times Sri Lanka

Nepotism on the rise again, should be stopped:BT-RCB poll


President Maithripala Sirisena has failed the people and ruined his own political future, and the United National Party is likely to win power since the former President is returning with many undesirables — were among a range of comments received in the recently-concluded joint poll by the Business Times and the Research and Consultancy Bureau.

It was conducted on email and through face-to-face street interviews. Results of the poll are on Page 1.

Here is a sample of the comments received in the email poll to the questions posed:

Action against corrupt persons:

- Mark my words, the former President and his coterie will be back in governance on August 18. The Government has failed miserably to take any action against the corrupt leaders of the previous regime though the promise to the voter during the run-up to the January Presidential poll was otherwise. It’s a sad state of affairs.

- With the depreciating rupee and escalating oil prices in the world market, it will be a herculean task for a new Government under a new Prime Minister to continue with the welfare measures doled-out by the “Rainbow Coalition”.

- Cost of living has improved but prices will pick up as the rupee falls.

- More time is needed for an improvement in the economy but governments under Ranil Wickremesinghe always wanted time.

- Being a minority government, the rulers haven’t been able to implement economic proposals.


- Has improved to some extent with salary revisions to the public sector and a reduction in fuel prices.

Treasury Bond:

- This issue and the Foreign Minister’s meeting with the UK-based Global Tamil Forum will be prime slogans at the UPFA rallies. These will surely be success stories for them. As seen in the past, some speakers in the MR camp are quite capable in convincing gullible rural voters.

- This has damaged the PM’s credibility among young voters.

- Will be a key factor as the Governor was Ranil’s appointee. The apparent conflict of interest in key public institutions, obtaining loans from Bank of Ceylon and bidding at a 3 per cent higher interest premium for a 30 year bond reveals that the process has been tampered it.

- The opposition will capitalise on this flaw. Even now the Governor could step down or take leave under the COPE investigaton is completed.

- This is not an issue amongst the majority who may not even comprehend this.

Deciding factor

- Though there could be many factors at play. The MR factor is significant. Our voters are not politically mature like in India. On the other hand, there is nothing much to chose from. The government and opposition are all rolled into one. It is a matter of shuffling the same pack of cards. A uniquely Sri Lankan situation.

- MR: People have now realised they have been mislead at the last election. People will select a strong leader for the country no matter what his family members have done in the past.

- The Mahinda Rajapaksa factor will decide polling trends.The entry of MR directly or circuitously to parliament cannot be prevented.
General comments:

The present chief of the Central Bank is an incarnation of the previous Central Bank chief. The issue is not who the person is but the selection process. When Sri Lanka has highly qualified persons why do we appoint persons who are not fit for the job? When key appointments are politically appointed then the systemic transparency is compromised and the system collapsed. The position of the Central Bank governor must be given to a qualified and experienced career Central Banker. Mahendran will be here today and gone tomorrow but the Central Bank must go on and that is why the selection process must be properly structured.

Ranil educated, Mahinda will definitely lose, Maithri cannot be trusted 
Several comments were also received from the email poll. Here is a sample of the comments:

- Whatever happens I will vote for Ranil because he’s educated. I want Mahinda to contest because he will lose. Then he won’t contest again.
- Mahinda or Maithri;, both cannot be trusted anymore. We need a new leader.
- Better to vote for the UNP; they are able to better control living costs.
- You can’t cheat the people like the old days; people will decide who should rule them.
- Gas and petrol prices have reduced. But I don’t use gas and I don’t have a car. So have I benefited? No.
- We have a situation where Mahinda can’t take decisions, Maithri is not taking decisions and Ranil is watching from the sidelines.
- The Central Bank bond issue is the only blot in Ranil’s administration while there are many other positives. I don’t think the bond controversy spur the SLFP to power.
- I’m disappointed about the central bank issue. That error will decide this election.
-The government has done well within 100 days. They were able to do what they promised at least to some extent. However Mahinda can do more than what has been done.
Govt. a failure

-This government is a failure, never achieved what they promised. I don’t see a difference between the UNP and the SLFP.

- I have worked for Mahinda but I don’t agree with what he had done. Now that he has been defeated, he should return to a non-political life. It’s his thirst for power and not because the people want him that he is contesting.
- With the increase in salaries of public servants, economic conditions have improved. However prices of items like sugar and rice remain high.
- The bond issue is likely to bounce back on the UNP.
- The UNP will return if Mahinda returns with his undesirables.
- Maithripala has ruined his political future by agreeing to field Mahinda.I can’t understand why he takes decisions like this.
- The culprits have not been properly dealt with as yet. Mahinda needs to stay out of the political arena.
- I hope the cost of living will come down after the election.
- Decision-making is weak. Strong action must be taken against corrupt persons. Maithripala is harbouring the culprits and protecting them from punishment.
- The UNP has made some progress. However punishing the offenders, stabilising the economy and bringing down the COL remain urgent issues to resolve.
- Punishing the culprits was at the top of the 100-day agenda but that hasn’t happened.
Nepotism on the rise
- Again nepotism is on the rise and we need to fight this.
- Mahinda needs to return to develop the country. Where is the beauty of Colombo today? Development under the present regime is at a standstill.
- A nation’s economy cannot be developed in 100 days.
We want Mahinda Rajapaksa.
- The Treasury Bond issue is not a deciding factor at the election.
Villagers don’t understand all this jargon
- The 100-day programme was a marketing promotion campaign by the UNP.



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