1/29/2010

Idiaminization and de-democratization in Sri Lanka

(January 29, Colombo - Lanka PolityThe post-war Sri Lanka has moved into a post-presidential Sri Lanka. Main stream media is highly defensive in reporting and some pro-opposition media outlets are facing severe challenges. 'Lanka-e-News' website was illegally sealed by a group yesterday, said the staff that went there to report to duty. Criminal Investigation Department visited the office of 'Lanka' newspaper run by People's Liberation Front (JVP) and the editor is asked to report for recording a statement regarding an article related to Defense Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.


Opposition presidential candidate Sarath Fonseka has sought asylum in foreign soil while claiming the government has blacklisted his passport. The government says he plotted to assassinate the ruling family. The plot described by the Director General of the Media Center for National Security seems very naive. Booking hotel rooms and arresting of several Army personnel said to be deserters do not provide gullible evidence. However, no legal action is taken. Why? 'I don't know why?' a famous Sinhala song says. 

State media continues vilifying the opposition candidate. A term that can be coined to introduce this campaign is 'idiaminization' i.e. portraying Fonseka as Idi Amin. But this Idi Amin won the confidence of at least 40% of those who voted at the presidential. 

We used the phrase 'at least' since Fonseka claims victory alleging government subtly manipulated the result. The major media in Sri Lanka today is gossip and a wide spread opinion is observed regarding rigging the election based on rumors spread island wide. The opposition leaders too repeat the gossip and no concrete fact is produced to prove the allegation so far. No authority either local or international is ready to admit the allegation that is not backed by concrete evidence. 

Anyway, people will lose confidence regarding elections and democracy if the politicians allow the rumor to consolidate. 


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