All political leaders should unite for the betterment of nation — Archbishop Oswald Gomis

by Harischandra Gunaratna
“In finding a solution to the major problems faced by this country all political leaders should unite themselves without being selfish and they must strive to build a conducive environment for equity and justice,” said Archbishop Rt. Rev. Dr. Oswald Gomis.

He was speaking at a ceremony organised at the Holy Cross College, Kalutara by the Philatelic Bureau of the Postal Department on the issue of two new postal stamps and the cancelling of the first cover to mark Christmas.

History has proved that every time we were not united and fought each other we were defeated by the colonial powers, he said.

Archbishop further said: It’s quint essential that all political leaders work with the solitary objective of achieving peace, whatever their political ideologies are.

Instead of identifying ourselves as Buddhists, Hindus, Christians and Muslims we must objectively unite ourselves as Sri Lankans, he said.

Our country is at a decisive juncture and at a time when we are celebrating an event like Christmas all of us should think of creating a peaceful environment for every body.

Imtiaz Bakeer Markar, Minister of Posts and Telecommunications said: “Both in Holy Quran and in the Islam religion, Jesus and Mother Mary are held in high esteem and revered as religious leaders.

We have achieved temporary peace, ending a 20-year-old civil war in this country after thousands of years of misunderstanding and hundreds of years of conflict.

The economy in the country has improved. People can live without the fear of a war. We could achieve all this due to the unstinted cooperation and patronage of the International Community, Minister said.

But the recent political crisis in the country has brought a question mark on peace issue. This has upset the peaceful environment that we have been able to build after a massive effort. Realising this international organisations like the European Community , U.N. countries like U.S.A., Japan and our neighbour India have expressed their dissatisfaction, he said.

Bakeer Markar said, “What we need today is co-existence in the political leadership to find a solution to the ethnic problem that the country is facing not a system of governance where all political leaders will be represented in one government following the same line of thinking.

The last presidential election and the general election have given the executive power and the constitutional power to the two main political parties and provided the base for political co-existence.

“One should not work in a opportunistic manner to achieve narrow political agendas and it’s our future generations who will suffer due to such actions,” the Minister observed.

He said“ Today I speak with nostalgic memories at the ceremony held at the Holy Cross College, Kalutara as this is my alma mater. Though I am of Islam faith I studied here with students of other religious faith in unity and harmony. This is what is lacking in this country today,” the Minister quipped.