Written by Staff Writer
19 Oct, 2019 | 9:54 pm
COLOMBO (News 1st):- Former Minister and founder of the Pathfinder Foundation, Milinda Moragoda calls on all Presidential Candidates to reveal who their friends are to the electorate. “Show me who your friends are and I will tell you who you are” is a quotation attributed to the Russian revolutionary, politician, political theorist and Premier of the Soviet Union, Vladimir Lenin.
Issuing a communique the former minister said in Sri Lanka’s patronage-based, tribalized system, well-meaning leaders have often been destroyed by those closest to them. Those associates within their inner coteries include their political allies, advisors, business persons aspiring to be oligarchs and family members. He added if presidential candidates do not set an example and control their surrogates and associates before they are elected into office, it is naive for us to expect them to do so after they are sworn into office. Citing examples the former Minister said Leaders like Singapore’s founder Lee Kwan Yee approved an open investigation when a close colleague and Cabinet Minister was caught accepting two bribes. Another close associate and loyalist, a State Minister, was jailed for accepting free vacations and the gift of a holiday bungalow from a property developer.
Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad of Malaysia has been known for lambasting leading businessmen associated with him for purchasing expensive cars and occupying overly luxurious offices. In conclusion, the former minister said all Presidential Candidates and the public should bear in mind the following declaration from Lord Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita, “Whatever a leader does, the masses follow; whatever standards he sets, his followers emulate them.”
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