Editorial

Wiggy in and out of order

Summary

Wigneswaran is a maverick. That’s almost par for Sri Lankan politicians. Democracy allows people who have been ex-terrorists, advocates of terrorism and champions of causes championed by terrorists to enter Parliament.

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TMTK MP C.V. Wigneswaran would have raised some eyebrows when in his opening statement in Parliament he made some claims about the Tamil language and its history.  It’s not the place for substantiation of course, but then again, that makes for all kinds of claims, tall and short.

There were calls for expunging such references from Hansard. Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena duly shot them down.  The Hansard is essentially a transcript of what’s said. Tall claims and tall responses should ideally be recorded. That’s how the citizens know what representations are made on their behalf.

Wigneswaran is a maverick. That’s almost par for Sri Lankan politicians. Democracy allows people who have been ex-terrorists, advocates of terrorism and champions of causes championed by terrorists, etc. to enter Parliament. One assumes that the voters share sentiments of their would-be representatives and that’s why they get the required number of preferential votes to enter Parliament. 

All good. Better for them to be in Parliament than remain outside, one can argue. 

Some might say that Wigneswaran, being an ex-judge and therefore with enough education tucked under his belt and endowed with or having acquired some modicum of intelligence ought to be less careless when making claims. However, the moment everything is discarded to wear the garb ‘politician’ all bets are off. Anything goes, as far as statements and claims are concerned. Wigneswaran, like most other politicians, can and has, played to the worst sentiments of the voter. It’s surprising that some people are surprised.

The claims are grand and the evidence is either thin, open to dispute or nonexistent. Out of order in a court of law. Perfectly ‘in order’ in Parliament. 

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