President Mahinda Rajapaksa charged that certain people without a name or address arrive in Sri Lanka in a bid to disrupt and destabilise the country with their anti-national campaigns, and, unfortunately, some countries assist them in the hope of a regime change.
Addressing the UPFA May Day rally at the Town Hall grounds last afternoon, President Rajapaksa added that a regime change would be possible only by the people for the people of this country through free and fair elections and not by conspiracies hatched with the assistance of foreign powers.
“This government commands the confidence of the people. Sri Lanka is one of the oldest democracies in Asia. Therefore, conspiracies, uprisings or rebellions have no place in this land; and this government will never let them happen,” he said.
“The greatest achievement of this government is to change the self centered mindset of the people. Usually, the thinking of an average person is: first himself, then the family, village and last the country. But this government has changed that sentiment, and a majority of Sri Lankans now think ‘Country First’. That is why such a large crowd has gathered at the Town Hall grounds in support of the government” he said.
The aim of the government is to unite the working class under one umbrella and mobilise it to rebuild the country that has been devastated for three decades by terrorism, he said.
Taking a swipe at the UNP for holding its May Day rally in Jaffna, President Rajapaksa said UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe should have tendered an apology to the people in Jaffna for disrupting the District Development Councils election and for the arson attack on the historic Jaffna library in 1981 under UNP rule.
“I was delighted to learn that the UNP was to hold its May Day rally in Jaffna because of the change we have brought about in the peninsula. Do not forget that Mr. Wickremesinghe did not even go to to Kilinochchi to sign the Ceasefire Agreement with Velupillai Prabhakaran. But now, thanks to the heroic soldiers, he has been able to tour any part of Jaffna, take a boat trip and see the LTTE bunkers. I wish they realise the value of the freedom and peace that this government won for the country,” he said.
“The government has taken a firm decision not to privatise state assets under any circumstances — as opposed to the policy of the UNP regimes of 2001 – 2004. The public service was pruned down to 600,000 by the UNP, recruitment to the public service were suspended for three years through a finance ministry circular, and dozens of state ventures were lined up for privatisation depriving thousands of employees of their employment. But this government has put an end to privatisation and increased the public service to 13,000. This is the difference between this government and other regimes,” he said.(Sandun A. Jayasekera)