Lessons from the Premadasa demise



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It was the first of May 1993 when the Tigers exploded a bomb to kill President Premadasa. I was a chairman of a corporation, handpicked by Premadasa though I have never done any politics before that.


We were obliged to attend 1st of May parade with the UNP union as it was May Day. I was in the front of the section of union members and walking along the road towards Galwala junction. We were stopping on and off to keep the pace and Thondaman’s union has joined the parade in front of us near Dimo. At the same time we saw Premadasa passing the parade in the same Land Rover imported by Montague Jayawickrama, which was bullet proofed by the company where I was working, and was waving to the participants with Mohideen who was sitting in a military fatigue in the front. 


One hundred yard before Galwala we heard the bang which sounded like fire crackers. Some people in front of us who had joined the parade may have perished and saved our lives!


Most of the People ran away, but without knowing that he was dead. I told our people to continue walking towards Galle Face where the final rally was to be held, where Premadasa was to make a speech. We still did not know that he was dead and waited at Galle Face. Everyone knew that there was an explosion but none were aware that Premadasa was one of the victims. I told some of my colleagues that he (Premadasa) may be watching from Presidential Secretariat to see that we have not left the parade 


Then we see Ranil and Sirisena Cooray arriving at the stage, sitting and having a discussion and no announcement was made by them. I walked back home and got a call from my wife who received a message from an Australian friend that worldwide news already announced that Premadasa was dead.


Whatever said and done, we saw how DB was peacefully enthroned with leadership of this duo, who were on that stage that day, to continue to run the country and hold the most peaceful election for Chandrika to come to power. 


In an African country there could have been a   coup to take power but it was prevented. Same people who may have got houses from the Gamudawa program lit crackers, despite the fact that they should have been mourning 


My contention is that the son of same Premadasa and the nephew of cunning fox JR should get together and work out a plan to save the country and democracy, unless GR has other plans to develop the country by marrying democratic rules with enhanced Discipline of this unruly nation.


17th September, which is the birthday of JR may be the day these two can get together!


DR SARATH OBEYSEKERA  


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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