We now have a war on service extensions!

We now have a war on service extensions!

15 May 2019 08:12 am

The imposition of island-wide curfew three weeks after the Easter Sunday attacks shows that authorities have terribly failed to stabilize national security.

Following the Easter Sunday attacks, serious accusations were leveled against the President, government and also all political leaders in general. Public opposition must certainly be expressed against all politicians attempting to take advantage of the situation. In the meantime, we have overlooked another group of individuals who must also be opposed – they are in a separate war for their own personal objectives.

Four of the high-ranking defense officers, namely Chief of Defense Staff (CDS) Ravindra Wijegunaratne, Army Commander Mahesh Senanayake, Air Force Commander Kapila Jayampathi and Navy Commander Piyal De Silva, are currently expecting service extensions. If President Maithripala Sirisena does not grant them service extensions, they will have to retire.

Therefore, to them, the next month is crucial. If the prevailing threat to the national security continues, the President is more likely to refrain from appointing new officials, and consequently above-mentioned officers will receive service extensions for another year.

These four officers appear to be struggling to protect their positions, instead of doing their best to control the prevailing crisis in Sri Lanka.

CDS Ravindra Wijegunaratne needs to protect his position more than others due to the fact that he has been accused of abetting the main suspect of the case of abducting and disappearing 11 youths. Another case has been filed against him for allegedly assaulting and threatening a witness of same case.

What’s more, he is still residing in the Navy Commander’s official residence without handing it over to any of the three Navy Commanders appointed after him.

Former Navy Commander Sirimewan Ranasinghe was the only person who retired without requesting service extensions, giving the opportunity to his successor. He set an example to all serving in the tri-forces.

Amid the prevailing chaotic situation in the country, military personnel’s service has won the respect of the general public. In fact, due to the extent of the insecurity people are experiencing, it is glorified. Unfortunately, a separate group of individuals are attempting to misuse the situation.

What a country!

SC