Daily Mirror - Sri Lanka|June 27, 2020
For starters, take the government. No ruling party in recent memory has faced the incumbent edge Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s SLPP faces today. Certain unpalatable facts must be acknowledged here. The ruling party controls the State media. It’s supported, tacitly if not (often) openly, by sections of the private media also. It has tapped into the people’s need for security at a time of uncertainty and, regardless of its flawed handling of the lockdowns, it has emerged from the three pandemic months. Rajapaksa’s blend of populism and authoritarianism, of rigid force and rationality, may not be and indeed isn’t to everyone’s liking, yet it has arguably delivered results with regard to the contagion. If the government is tipped to win the upcoming elections – which we can’t say for sure, since anything can happen – it’s partly because of this perception of it fed to the people by the media. And yet, despite this, the regime is not without its weaknesses.
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June 27, 2020