Do Your Duty and I Will Do Mine – President
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa addressing the nation urged voters to head to polling booths early today to exercise their franchise at the General Election.
He said he would perform his duty and strive to fulfil the aspirations and hopes reposed on him by the citizens.
The President observed that the necessary environment has been made for voters to cast their ballot at the Election, without any risk of contracting COVID-19. He said the environment has also been created for the public to cast their votes sans any intimidation or pressure, and hoped that all citizens will exercise their franchise during the Poll.
The President stressed that services rendered by the health authorities, the Tri-Forces and those from the State Intelligence Service in combating the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic had been commendable and an example to the rest of the world.
President Rajapaksa also said measures taken to rid the nation of evils such as illegal drugs, the underworld and similar big-time vice was there for all to see and promised to wipe out these scourges from this country during his term in office.
Speaking at the conclusion of the Esala Maha Perahara of the Sri Dalada Maligawa, he further said: “In the lead up to the General Election, I toured most areas here. During those visits, I was able to meet various people who brought their problems to me. I have taken to heart the issues faced by the people such as drinking water, land and education. These issues will definitely be resolved during my term in office. Towards this end, I also intend to appoint a talented set of Parliamentarians to the next Cabinet of Ministers. I will ensure a country where the basic needs of the people are met.”
The President also said:
The people hope for a country to receive the blessings of the Sacred Tooth Relic. We can make the people’s aspirations come true only by building a disciplined country.
That is why in the ten point programme ‘Saubaghyaye Dekma’ we promised to build a society which follows good qualities. We need a society where justice can be done to everybody.
Your and our wish is to see a peaceful, calm society. I appointed the Buddhist Counselling Council so that we could be shown the proper path for that as well as to obtain blessings.
On every third Friday of the month our Chief Prelates, Anunayake Theros and the Chief Maha Sangha come to the President’s office and provide us with advice and anusasana required to heal the country.
I have dedicated myself to protect the heritage of this country to build this country according to the advice of the Sangha. It is one of my official duties to make room for the past tradition of the role of Bikkhus in building the country.
The Perahara is one of our most valued cultural festivals. We bring the talents of local artistes as well as sectors of art from ancient times which is the heritage of generations. The Government will make sure to protect this heritage as well as to promote it.
During the past, it was a problem to find tame elephants for the Perahara festivals of temples and Dewalas. Such a situation will not arise again. The government is making arrangements about tame elephants as a part of our culture and heritage.
Based on a request of Bikkhus we set up a Prsidential Task Force to protect archaeological treasures in the East. As they preach, 99% of the archaeological treasures in this country belong to Buddhism. As much as make arrangements for its archaeological value we have to arrange space for their religious values too. The Government is working towards amending the Archaeological Act in order to get an Act which is suitable for this country, passed.
Not only that, a request that intellectuals have made and this country has been waiting for, for a very long time, which is a National Education Policy has already been drafted. When national policies in connection with agriculture, health etc., are being formulated in the future we will make use of the advice of the Buddhist Counselling Council.
Anyone who takes over the country in the future will be able to take the country forward based on these policies. We have gained an understanding regarding the decline our country faces due to certain policies that change with new governments that come in.”
“If the Government employees are ineffective, the country will not move forward. We know that in a country where there is no bribery or corruption development goals are facilitated easily. We will not allow anti-social activities such as the underworld and drugs to destroy this society.
We have gained a good understanding of our heritage which protected for thousands of years, our culture and civilisation. Society which is built through temples, churches, kovils cannot be built using money.
I am obliged to taking the path that ancient Kings took, and carrying out all obeisance to the Sacred Tooth Relic, as the leader of this country. I will work without forgetting the past traditions to make this country where the Sacred Tooth Relic remains, a free and fair as well as peaceful one.
Therefore, I am ready to render the historic responsibility as well as the duty of the Government, which has been assigned on behalf of the Sacred Tooth Relic. There will be a country remaining for our future generation only if our pride and heritage is protected. We have pointed out that vision through the decisions made by the Government during the past eras. When this country is made prosperous and a good citizen is created and national and religious co-existence is brought about, I believe that the living Sacred Tooth Relic will be protected,” the President further said.