The January 8, 2015 Presidential poll is not a mere election but will decide the future of the country which is on a progressive track after the nation was liberated from the nearly three decade terrorism, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said. Speaking at the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) maiden Presidential election rally in Anuradhapura yesterday (Dec. 11), the President said the people will never allow anyone to take the country backward.
The meeting held at Salgado Stadium was a sea of heads. The rally was held on a grand scale showcasing the strength and the unity of the UPFA under the theme Surakshitha Ratak in support of UPFA Presidential candidate President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
Addressing the mammoth crowd, the President said the country is governed with a clear vision aimed to achieve set goals.
"The forthcoming election is significant since it will decide the future of the country. However, certain segments, including hidden LTTE supporters abroad want to bring political and Security Forces' leaders before the International Court of Justice (ICJ)," he said.
President Rajapaksa said certain politicians are hell bent on defeating him at the forthcoming Presidential elections to take him before the ICJ.
"The ulterior motives of these people are clear," he said.
The President said the Government protects the rights of all, which is the greatest of all human rights. President Rajapaksa asked if safeguarding and protecting the right to live is a human rights violation.
"The Government has protected and safeguarded human rights and the humanitarian operation was justifiable," the President said.
He said the Government will never allow any force to take action against the Security Forces personnel who did much to liberate the motherland. Addressing the cheering crowd, President Rajapaksa said the Government will launch a mega scale purified water supply project to address the long felt need of the people in the Anuradhapura District.
"Considering the severe hardship faced by the people in the area and those affected by kidney disease, the Government focused its attention on finding a long lasting and speedy solution to the scarcity of purified water. Every household will receive purified pipe-borne water under the project which will be implemented in the near future," the President said.
The present Government never does anything for political gains or to attract votes. Everything is done to a proper plan, a set target and with a result oriented vision, President Rajapaksa said.
He said the Government has put a full stop to injustice in the education sphere affecting rural students, a state of affairs for decades, with the introduction of equal education opportunities for every student. President Rajapaksa said the people asked him nothing but to liberate the country from the clutches of terrorism in 2005 to live peacefully and happily without any fear of death.
"I heeded their request and as promised, the country was freed and united within four years, letting everyone live happily. All ethnic groups are living as one in peace and harmony. The Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim people live in one united nation," the President said.
"The country, which underwent immense hardship for three decades owing to terrorism, is being developed for not only the present generation but also for the future generation," President Rajapaksa said.
"The Government has taken measures to provide and fulfill people's needs. The opposition does not have anything to say at election rallies. The road network is being developed and reconstructed while other infrastructure facilities, such as electricity, communication facilities, health facilities, water supply schemes etc are also being developed and upgraded," the President said.
President Rajapaksa said there is no doubt about the UPFA winning the forthcoming election, when considering the mammoth crowd attending UPFA rallies.
"The people have understood that a UPFA victory at the election is a victory for the people and the country."
He said a UPFA victory will be a victory for the nation and the country, which has been placed on a rapid development track after it was liberated from the clutches of terrorism.
"A UPFA victory will accelerate the on-going rapid development drive, which the country is witnessing," President Rajapaksa said.
"We all have to live like one family in this united country. Harmony among all is vital for the country's development and future progress," the President said.
Minister Dinesh Gunawardena addressing the rally said that president Rajapaksa is the only person who can bring the country towards prosperity while protecting hard won peace. Minister Susil Premajayantha said that no politician who has crossed over from the SLFP will be successful in their career.
He also noted that if the executive presidency was not in active terrorism would not be defeated. Mr.Wimal Weerawansa pointed out that the people are not ready to betray the country. Former general secretary of the UNP and new health minister Tissa Attanayake said that the UNP is batted with factionalism.