Professionals to replace politicians
2018-12-20 There remains less than a year until Sri Lanka braces for its next elections. With the recent series of political dramas that unfolded, it is no surprise for Sri Lankans to witness the advent of new parties or old alliances being reborn. That is what happened during almost all the elections that have taken place. While the most asked question ‘who can measure up to be a politician’ remains debated in a country where there is no formal qualification to serve as a politician, a collective of Sri Lankan professionals, activists and artistes gathered at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute (SLFI) on December 17 and formed a movement called National People’s Movement (NPM).
Absence of a feasible alternative
They emphasised that Sri Lanka as a country is eroding on multiple fronts — socially, economically and culturally. The professionals pointed out that the power of people is the strongest and it can solve almost all the burning issues in the country.
They stated that a power struggle and rivalry among main political parties may eventually pave the way for the evolution of a brutal dictatorship or even anarchy, in the absence of a feasible alternative to the people of the country.
The NPM platform is a collaboration of 17-member organizations including United Professionals Movement, Deshodaya Organization, Vinivida Foundation, Lawyers for Equal Rights, Sri Lankan Engineers Association, Trustees (Gte.) Ltd, Jathika Janatha Commission, Jathika Parisarika Sanvidana Ekamuthuwa, Alliance for Political Conscience , Paramparika Ha Deshiya Waidyawarunge Ekamuthuwa, Jathika Guru Balaya, Udara Sri Lanka Organization, Independent Organization to Protect Depositors, Mihithala Mithuro Environment Development Foundation, Janatha Niyojanaye Purogami Sabhawa, AI Imam Shafi Center for Education & Development and Dambulu Govijana Vyaparaya.
The people in power have become disconnected from the citizenry. They develop interests separate and apart from the voters. They push policies that benefit themselves and harm the broader population
The members of the NPM said that the movement was formed with seven main objectives. These objectives include being an active force that empowers people to create an impactful social, economic and political transformation, build a people friendly, modern and an efficient nation free of corruption, where equity, equality, justice and respectfulness prevails, develop a national agenda/road map through an inclusive process to address the social, economic and political challenges we face, ensure the establishment of a new constitution through a wide consultative and participatory process, establish a stable environment for innovation and creativity based home grown industries, promote national unity, ethnic and religious harmony and reconciliation and finally developing a new political leadership and a political culture to build the nation by identifying most suited individuals to run for government, while retaining power with the people.