Secret behind Fonseka’s re-entry
Whenever Sarath Fonseka emerges in politics, those opposed to him appear excited and confused. Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka is a sensation in every field he treads because those who envy him view this character as a sensational figure, may be with fear. Fonseka is outspoken and that had been to his disadvantage on many occasions.
- Be that as it may, when Sarath Fonseka was engaged at Temple Trees signing the agreement with Ranil Wickremesinghe, Gotabaya Rajapaksa was busy meeting the Maha Sangha.
- Gotabaya chose the occasion to use the media to launch an attack on Fonseka.
- He claimed it was a shameless effort to bring Fonseka, who was defeated at the last general election, on the National List.
- Gotabaya challenged those ministers who scoffed at him saying he knew no politics being a military man, to pose the same question to Fonseka who was a former Army Commander.
All these comments emanating from Gotabaya display his fear or excitement over attempts to bring Fonseka to Parliament.
Adding more confusion to the move to bring Fonseka to Parliament, another Fonseka critic Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe too, seems to panic.
It was reported that Minister Rajapakshe had threatened to quit his ministerial portfolio if Fonseka is brought in as a Member of Parliament.
It was Minister Rajapakshe who earlier said he would not allow the arrest of Gotabaya Rajapaksa. The Wijeyadasa-Fonseka battle erupted over the controversial Avant Garde issue. When Fonseka firmly demanded the arrest of Gotabaya over the Avant Garde controversy, it was Minister Rajapakshe who appeared to protect Gotabaya. Fonseka unfolded the link between the Avant Garde owner and Wijeyadasa to the country. This battle clearly demonstrated that some ministers were being used by Gotabaya to prevent his arrest. Similarly, it is clear that Gotabaya has engaged in an exercise to prevent Fonseka entering Parliament through the influence of some ministers.
Gotabaya began to fear Sarath Fonseka after the latter won the LTTE terrorist war in May 2009. It was clear that Fonseka became more popular than Mahinda after winning the war as intelligence reports confirmed that position. That was why Fonseka was removed from the post of Army Commander. Mahinda’s Government jailed Fonseka as it feared the government could be toppled if Fonseka was let free.
Now Gotabaya-Mahinda loyalists fear Fonseka’s entry to Parliament as the current ‘patriotic struggle’ launched by them against the Maithri-Ranil Government could be made redundant. Also, the attempt to field Gotabaya at the next presidential election would be in vain. These groups are trying to field Gotabaya at the next presidential election to be backed by Mahinda loyalists to gain power using the war victory.
Mahinda loyalists believe that the Armed Forces and the people would be disgruntled if the Maithri-Ranil Government attempts to implement the proposals of the UNHRC. They further contend that such a background would be the best opportunity to start a campaign against the government. The Ranil-Maithri Government would lack evidence and facts to meet that challenge. The reason is that while Maithri was in the government during the war, Ranil and many present ministers in the then Opposition were critical of the war. Fonseka gave leadership to that war. Whatever Mahinda loyalists may say, those in the Armed Forces know the sacrifices made by Fonseka towards winning the war. If Fonseka enters Parliament, Mahinda loyalists who have written the war victory in their names will feel weak.
The reason is that even Mahinda was never in the war zones. In contrast, Fonseka was nearly killed by terrorist bombs twice, but returned to the battlefield, against medical advice, as Army Commander. Dinesh and Wimal who scream about the war victory and war heroes have never stepped into war zones. They look like Lilliputians in the presence of Fonseka who is a Gulliver.
In such a backdrop, the entry of Gotabaya into politics, with Fonseka standing firm on the political scene, would look undervalued. If Mahinda loyalists had written the war victory in their names 100 per cent, Fonseka’s entry would reduce it by half to go in favour of the Maithri-Ranil Government and that cannot be prevented. That is why Gotabaya and Mahinda loyalists fear Fonseka’s entry into Parliament.