The Chairman of the National Movement for Social Justice Karu Jayasuriya yesterday (22) charged that certain people are still trying to create racial and religious divisions even amidst a pandemic.
Pointing out that the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic crisis has left our country and its citizens in a desperate situation, Jayasuriya urged national leaders and the people of Sri Lanka to come together to build national religious unity and brotherhood without allowing the country to be ravaged by racial and religious disharmony once again.
Jayasuriya made these remarks at the Monaragala District Conference of the Coalition for National and Religious Reconciliation held yesterday (22).
Commenting further, the former speaker said:
"Today we are pleased to have the opportunity to meet members of the distinguished community of the Uva province. This meeting is a very important one to us.
Your forefathers sacrificed their lives to free this country from the grips of its foreign colonisers. They shed their blood on this land. Therefore as Sri Lankans, we bow our heads in respect to those brave heroes.
It has been 73 years since we gained independence. But can we be truly pleased If we were to compare the situation we were in following independence with the situation today? Countries that gained independence after us have long surpassed us in development.
During the past period, the country had to face "racial, religious and political divisions as well as conspiracies, youth unrest and terrorism" which was a major obstacle to the country's progress. However, we do not wish to lay the blame on any particular person or party for these events of the past now as it would be a futile exercise.
The other unfortunate fact is that even though your forefathers sacrificed their lives for the betterment of this country, the Uva province is still one of the least developed provinces in Sri Lanka.
We are here today with the aim of accepting the wrongs of the past and applying necessary remedies through a new national and religious united front, with the aim of creating a prosperous new society in Sri Lanka that is democratically disciplined, free, independent, fair and just.
We do not have any party affiliations. We aren't prone to racist ideologies.
All religions preach the need to create a righteous and peaceful society. If adhered to, we can create a better society. Therefore, we are visiting various parts of the country to request the religious leadership and the leaders of these local communities to support us in realising this noble goal.
It is a great strength to us to witness the indegenous community being represented here today. We appreciate the dedication of the leader of the indegenous population in protecting the environment. We will ensure that their rights are protected.
The world as well as our country is facing great challenges today. The Covid pandemic and the economic downturn has left our country and its citizens in a desperate situation.
Therefore, we cannot allow this country to deteriorate further and set it on a path of devastation. By allowing it, we would be betraying our future generations.
In spite of these facts, a few people are still trying to create racial and religious divisions. We appeal to national leaders and the people of Sri Lanka to come together to build national religious unity and brotherhood without allowing the country to be ravaged by racial and religious disharmony once again.
Politics should be limited to election times and let all political leaders come to a policy agreement to save this country from this unfortunate state.
It was through unity that the ruined nations of the world eventually became strong States. We cannot become isolated in the world and therefore must gain the trust and respect of the world community. Tourists and investors will flock to a country that protects democracy, upholds the rule of law and human rights.
We make this appeal with the utmost sincerity and sincerely hope that these matters will be brought to the attention of the authorities."