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What is the Samagi Balawegaya

November 18, 2013 Leave a comment

For the past few weeks I have been asking people to join the Samagi Youth Corp, and rightly so many of them have asked me what exactly is the Samagi and what are the goals of the Samagi Youth.

I am taking this time to write a brief summary of what the Samagi is and how the youth corp will operate.

The Samagi Balawegaya (Force for Unity) is a coalition of civil society activists, trade unions, media groups, politicians and individuals who are concerned about and are dedicated to working towards a sustainable and all-inclusive future for Sri Lanka. The Samagi as a whole has agreed upon the ten principles detailed below: 

ONE 

Abolishing Executive Presidency 

TWO

Strengthening of Good Governance by re-installing the 17th Amendment to the constitution and removal of the obstructionist clauses under 18th Amendment

THREE

Affirming a united Sri Lankan identity by conserving the rights of every ethnic group in Sri Lanka’s diversity.

FOUR

Strengthening of Parliamentary democracy by repealing “Manaapaya” system

FIVE

Right to Information and Freedom Expression and Freedom

SIX

Re-affirming Rule of Law and Independence of Judiciary

SEVEN

Controlling Cost of Living and Implementing anti-corruption laws

EIGHT

Preservation and Strengthening of Universal Education and Healthcare benefits

NINE

Reducing the poverty and implementing a truly people-centric development plan for the country

TEN

Implementation of LLRC Recommendations

These ten principles will form the backbone of the Samagi as we continue to push the current government towards the change that the people of Sri Lanka are asking for.

What is the Samagi Youth Corp?

The Samagi Youth Corp is an arm of the Samagi that will work alongside the youth of this country who are committed to ensuring a future that we all agree upon. The main aim of the Youth corp is to demand from the government the necessary assistance in helping them build a future that is not only prosperous but also sustainable. 

Politics and politicians have, for too long, been allowed to sneak past the voters with the outdated populist methods. As the youth it is now our turn to take a step forward and start asking the hard questions and once again force the politicians to return to the role of being the representatives of the people. 

Asking the questions alone will not be enough, the Samagi youth will take upon itself the lead role. As we expand through the provinces, the corp will form a consensus among their peers over issues that our generation will be forced to inherit. The tough questions must be asked both of ourselves and the government. The traditional image of the role of the youth in society must be re-evaluated. 

While the demands are made of the government, we the youth must be prepared to work towards achieving the future that we want. 

The Samagi Youth Corp is throwing out an open invitation to all those who are interested to join up.

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Victory Day parade

The government is preparing for the Victory Day parade, which is scheduled to be held on Saturday. For some people in Colombo they have chosen to criticise both the armed forces and the government with sentiment such as “why should we be celebrating a war” or “this is just another opportunity to pump up the forces”.

I personally do not agree with these ideas, most people have chosen to jump on one side or the other (that being either undying support for the government or total opposition to them). For me, I plan on going to the parade on Saturday, not so I can stand with the crowds yelling Jayaweva or waving the national flag in a patriotic fashion, but so that I can enjoy a parade by the military.

I have always been a military nut, from my small days I used to play with my army men recreating mock battles imagining myself part of them. As I grew older, and the horrors of war became more apparent my interest in the topic never faltered. In fact it took on a new dimension and I took up the study of it through reading every possible book I could get my hands on regarding the topic.

So now I have before me an opportunity to go and enjoy a parade which will see thousands of soldiers from different units, military hardware, flyovers by the air-force and naval boats on display in the sea.

This parade for the government is an opportunity to remind people that they defeated terrorism, freed the country and basically deserve the unending power that is before them. This parade for me is an opportunity to satisfy the little boy within who still yearns to see the shiny guns being carried by the men and the women all decked out in their uniforms.

I will definitely be putting up photos of the parade, and prior rehearsals, so do take a look and hopefully you’ll will see what the ten year old inside me sees.