Out of the three brothers of Mahinda Rajapaksa, Gotabaya is the most arrogant and brainless one, due to his inability to cope up with and handle the most important Ministry in the country due to his in-experience to administer it and his lack of education and the heavy work load under his authority has created many problems for him to handle this Ministry.
by Gunadeera Rajakaruna
(May 21, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Readers may wonder why I call our most powerful Defence Secretary an arrogant man. Some may think that I am affixing a label on a Secretary, according to his own words is the one who won the LTTE war by eliminating all the LTTE Leaders with the help of Major General Shavendra Silva. Yes, everyone may think I am calling this Defence Secretary as an arrogant man, because I am a SF supporter, but definitely I am not a SF supporter, but I support to keep my country safe from all evils and injustice. Out of the three brothers of Mahinda Rajapaksa, Gotabaya is the most arrogant and brainless one, due to his inability to cope up with and handle the most important Ministry in the country due to his in-experience to administer it and his lack of education and the heavy work load under his authority has created many problems for him to handle this Ministry. He is also getting misled by his two minders, Retd. Major General Palitha Fernando and Retd. Major General Kapila Hendawitharane. Kapila, who earned money by fraudulent manner by claiming funds allocated to informants, while in the service is very corrupt. These two individuals while trying to meet their own agendas, do immense harm to the Defence Forces once they served. With the help of his two minders who promised him to save him from a possible WAR CRIME Tribunal, chasing his dreams unabated to eliminate the WAR HERO General Fonseka for good. His motive for revenge has created a very dangerous but unsettled mind for him and serious trouble for his elder brother President Rajapaksa and to the country. What he was trying to avoid by jailing General Fonseka, is haunting him now. War Crimes and Human Rights Violations are very serious charges, and he is not even prepare to face them and now trying to run away to America, once he denounce, to save himself.
Unusual Behaviour for a Secretary of a Ministry.
After serving for the Sri Lankan government in various senior positions for number of years and coming across many former Secretaries, I have not come across any Secretary openly engaged in politics like Gotabaya Rajapaksa. There were two former Army Commander who served as Defence Secretaries, but they never abused their powers like this DS. Under the Administrative Regulations of Sri lanka, which governs the employment and behaviour of all public employees of Sri Lanka, it prohibits them from engaging in Politics. Defence Secretary is a Public sector employee, if he is covered under the FR and the AR and other Public service regulations, how can he engaged in politics and still serve as the Secretary of Defence? He can be the brother of President Rajapaksa but regulations applicable to others cannot be over looked when he committed an offence under the AR or the FR. I am puzzled and sadden to note the silence of Presidential Secretary Mr. Lalith Weeratunga, head of the Administrative Service still hesitating to charge Gotabaya for these violations.
During the Presidential election he addressed political rallies to support his brother Mahinda Rajapaksa, but charge former Army Commander General Fonseka for allege violation of the Army Act of 1949, engaging in politics while in service, for talking to one Johnston Fernando MP, a Lawmaker of the Government of Sri Lanka who planned to kill President Rajapaksa for money. Gotabaya Rajapaksa took the Election stage in Kelaniya to support Mervyn De Silva and said Mervyn is a very close friend of the Rajapaksa family. Do we follow the rule of the law in Sri Lanka when the offence is committed by a member of the Rajapaksa family?
A Secretary of a Ministry should be a mature employee in the government service and once he assumed the position he should behave as an example for others to keep the respect of the Ministry. But due to his immaturity, minimal education qualification and lack of experience in managing a large Ministry like Defence in manpower as well as in funds, he has failed to prove his ability and the capability to run such a big Ministry. His inability to administer the Defence Ministry has created manpower problems and discipline among the Officers and NCOs’ and approximately 50,000 solders have deserted the Army. In addition to the above work load he is now entrusted with the Colombo Development and the UDA, where he used Military officer in Uniform as top administrators without any qualifications in Urban Development.
As a Secretary he behaved as an arrogant person when conducting interviews with foreign correspondence and the way he shouted at the interviewers and threatened to hang General Fonseka if he found guilty was shown in TV programmes world wide and most foreigners think he is mad and ignorant.
White Flag Issue.
White flag issue was in the public eye from 20th May 2009, and many people from the Rajapaksa family and the government new about what was reported in the papers. Even President Rajapakse was informed by Mr. Nambiar, Chief of Staff for the UN Secretary Banki-Moon. All this was a creation of the now surrendered Kumaran Padmanathan (KP). According to cyber reports KP contacted the UN Secretary General, Ministers in Norway after receiving phone calls from late LTTE Chief Prabakaran, Police Chief Nadesan and Pulidevan to save them from imminent death from the hands of the advancing Army..
After KP, Kohona (Foreign Secretary) and Basil Rajapaksa then President’s Senior Advisor assured them that they can come out with White Flags and walk slowly to the Army lines (and promised that they will instruct the Army front line) they walk with white flags. President Rajapaksa also promised to allow them to surrender. But unfortunately all LTTE Leaders got killed even though they came out walking with white flags. Who killed them on whose orders is a question every one likes to get an answer, to clear the decks of War Crimes? This single issue created by some one with authority was the main single reason for the UN to appoint a Panel to investigate the facts surrounding these killings. To make maters verse, Gotabaya got the AG to charge General Fonseka on trump up charges of spreading State Secrets to a Journalist of the Sunday Leader, with a promise that she will be spared of contempt of court charges.
Worst witness in the White Flag Case
Gotabaya Rajapaksa appeared as a witness to the prosecution before the Trial at Bar consisting of Judges Deepali Wijesundara (President) W.T.M.P.B. Warawewa, and M.S. Razeen. Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s behaviour as a witness was very disgusting and not as impressive as he was trying to show the court that he is the all powerful Secretary to the Ministry of Defence and the most powerful man next to President Rajapaksa or he is more powerful than President Rajapaksa? This single incident proved that he is brainless man.
His answers to questions directed at him by the defence Counsel Nalin Ladduwahetty created displeasure among the Judges, Lawyers as well as the others assemble in the court to watch the proceedings and the general public who read about these answers through the national papers. His initial answer to a question he stated “Initially he thought former Army Commander (General) Sarath Fonseka was the correct choice for the job but later he felt it was a wrong decision”. What a brilliant answer from a Secretary of the Ministry of Defence?
As an ordinary Sri Lankan I like to know when he became aware that the appointment of General Fonseka as the Army Commander was a wrong decision. Was this decision was reached after the 19th May 2009? Is Gotabaya Rajapaksa having the ability to take such a decision or some one else did it for him?
This was what Business Toady in June 2009 published:
Q. The success of the Army during the last three years is largely because of the unwavering strength of the Army Commander General Sarath Fonseka. Can you give your views on that?
This was what Gotabaya Rajapaksa told the Business Times on that day.
[As the interview is too long I shall include the beginning and the end of the interview for the information of those readers who missed the June 2009 interview].
A. “My sincere appreciation goes to the Army Commander, as I describe before it was the Army which bore the brunt of the battle. General Fonseka was responsible for the tactical planning for all areas in the Army. General Fonseka knew the capabilities of his men………………………………….., His Commitment, experience, knowledge and also the way he performed was very important in this whole campaign. Therefore selecting General Fonseka was an extremely very important.……….”
He concluded his answer in this manner:
President wanted Sarath Fonseka to Command the Army because he knew the capabilities of General Sarath Fonseka. Actually in the end, it proved to be the right decision as it proved results”.
Soon after June 2009, Gotabaya Rajapaksa should have realised that the decision to appoint General Sarath Fonseka was a very bad decision. It took him approximately Four years to realise this. What a brilliant Defence Secretary this Gotabaya Rajapaksa is? After the LTTE were eliminated he got this brilliant idea to disgrace the “world best Army Commander” according to him. Gotabaya is a Hypocrite and a disgrace to the Administrative service. Any other Secretary should not have brought down the service to such a low level by behaving like Mervyn De Silva his worthwhile friend, in front of learned Judges and Lawyers from the Prosecution as well as from the Defence. Most probably IGP Dr. Balasooriya should have fallen asleep inside the court house (an offence he committed) as he was choked with emotion with all these contradictory answers. My question is why Gotabaya Rajapaksa was not charged by the court for his disgraceful behaviour.
Gotabaya’s life as a Signal Officer.
Gotabaya’s main problem when he was serving in the Army was his inability to converse in English. When he was in Palalai, he worked out a mutual transfer with another officer to another station where English was not necessary. Palitha Fernado was his saviour during his time in the Army and Palitha used to sit or answer for all the papers in the compulsory examinations for promotions as Gotabaya was not able to read and write fluently.
For that help he shows his gratitude by employing Palitha in the MOD and making him to write most of his letters. Palitha as a lap dog do every thing Gotabaya wants him to do. Palitha wrote the verdicts of the CM 1 and CM 2.
During 1986-1989 periods Gotabaya joined with then D/Defence (General) Minster Ranjan Wijerathna and after Ranjan Wijerathna’s untimely death, resigned from the Army and with the help of some Christian Missionaries managed to go to America. Rev. Piyananda in LA looked after him at the initial stages of his life in America, and some Sri Lankans who knew Gotabaya during that time says he had enough “Dane” from the temple to survive the bad times till he got his first job with 7/11 shops.
Why Gotabaya hates Sarath Fonseka
In 2005, Gotabaya and President Mahinda Rajapaksa was trying to replace then Army Commander Kottegoda and looking for a capable Senior Officer to take charge as the Army Commander who can take the challenge of eliminating the LTTE. A retired Army Officer, a member of the SLFP and much closed friend of President Rajapaksa and a former Army boss of Gotabaya who knew Sarath Fonseka well recommended Sarath Fonseka to them. Major General Sarath Fonseka was appointed as the Army commander by President Rajapaksa.
While the war was proceeding very slowly, Basil Rajapaksa instructed then Brigadier Manawadu who was in charge of the Muhmale Army Camp to attack the LTTE. Due to bad leadership and failed Command of Brigadier Manawadu the Army lost two tanks and 414 soldiers from that attack. This forced Lt. General Sarath Fonseka to hand his resignation to the President. President shouted at Basil and told nothing like this should happen again and for Lt. General Fonseka to continue.
Manawadu was transfer to the HQ Ice Box without any perks and any responsibility. As soon as General Fonseka resigned Manawadu was promoted as Major General by Gotabaya and appointed him as the Commander in-charge of Colombo Security with some ulterior motives. Later Gotabaya used this failed Army officer to arrest General Fonseka on February 7th 2010.
Gotabaya under the advice of Palitha and Kapila wanted to direct the Army as former D/Minister of Defence Anuruddha Rathwatta did during President CBK’s time. But he forgot to understand that during Rathwatta’ s time the Sri Lankan Army lost all the battles other than the initial battle to re-take Jaffna.
Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the man who sold food stuff and sat in front of a computer for over 15 year in USA, wanted to imitate what Rathwatta did during his days with the help of Palitha and Kapila, he trespassed on Laws by exceeding his legal limits and acted over and above the Defence Secretaries official duties and ordered divisional commanders on various occasions. This intrusion upset Lt.General Fonseka and they had verbal arguments over all these un-lawful intrusions and the DS and AC became a bit distance. Gotabaya’s animosity to Lt. General Fonseka was fuelled by Palitha and Kapila both hated Lt. General Fonseka. Gotabaya Rajapaksa arranged a trip for Lt.General Fonseka to go to China with the approval of the Chinese government on 11th may 2009, with the idea of taking control of the war front. Lt.General Fonseka was to inspect Arms purchased by the Lanka Logistics headed by Gotabaya Rajapaksa. Lt. General Fonseka returned to the island on 17th May and the LTTE war ended on 18th May 2009.
Surrender of Kumaran Pathmanadan aka K.P.
Retired Major General Kapila Hendawitharane was posted to Thailand to save him from an imminent death from the hands of the LTTE by the then government. During his time in Thailand he was supposed to locate KP to stop the flow of Arms to the LTTE. Kapila did locate some of KP’s close associates. As the heat was on KP from the FBI he vanished to Switzerland / Germany. A patriot of the motherlanka who learned the whereabouts of KP passed this information to Gotabaya Rajapaksa. This DS who says he was instrumental in eliminating the LTTE, has asked from this person who gave this information what are you talking about and who is this KP? So this person has explained to him who is the famous KP he located. But this Defence Secretary was not aware who KP was, but he says his men later arrested him?
After the war and when the FBI is just inches away from arresting KP, and KP’s associates contacted Kapila Hendawitharane to say that KP is willing to surrender. So Kapila arranged the surrender through the Deputy High Commissioner in Malaysia Major General Udaya Perera. KP was with Udaya Perera till he was air lifted to Sri Lanka, in a Sri Lankan Airline (Business Class) and as soon as the plane touched down Kapila whisked him away and ended at Gotabaya’s residence for morning Tea. Has any one ever heard an arrested prisoner wanted for murder and various other charges having breakfast with DS and then getting accommodation at Visumpaya?
President Mahinda Rajapaksa divided the Sinhala and Tamil population in Sri Lanka and in foreign countries who supported the GOSL during the LTTE war by allowing Gotabaya Rajapaksa to arrest General Fonseka for trying to stage a coup and then charging him for very flimsy offences, which he should not have allowed as the President.
Gotabaya as the man who robbed the Ash Pumpkin (Alu Puhul) did every thing to prove that he is the man who stole the Ash pumpkin, by taking General Fonseka before the Judiciary on trump up charges that he was instrumental in giving false information to the Sunday Leader Editor, Fredericka Janz about the “White Flag drama of killing LTTE Leaders who wanted to surrender” when this information was in the Public domain since 20th May 2009. Gotabaya who was guilty of this offence by ordering Shavendra Silva in an unlawful manner over the Army Commanders orders, used Fredericka Janz who was on BAIL for breaching an order issued by the Mt. Lavinia Courts for “CONTEMPT OF COURT”, and directing her to publish this interview in her paper for election gains, even though General Fonseka never said anything to her to implicate Gotabaya.
This decision of Gotabaya Rajapaksa to implicate the Army Commander who knew every thing in the war front, now haunting the Rajapaksa brothers and may derail the Rajapaksa regime for good.