political talk shows on television have now become the latest battle
ground for the country's politicians with producers and moderators
having to play the role of referees as well.
On the Tuesday
night show of a popular private station, first it was Sihala Urumaya
national organiser Champika Ranawaka and TNA Jaffna district MP
Nadarajah Raviraj referring to one another as 'kotiya' and 'nariya'
and then going headlong into a heated exchange of words.
Once that was
sorted out and the programme got going, it was Badulla district
PA MP Dilan Perera and Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Minister
Dr. Jayalath Jayawardene's turn to have a go at each other. One
called the other ' hora', then 'maha hora', then 'horungeth hora'
until things got so out of control that the show had to go into
arguments continued behind the cameras with this time each accusing
the other of various liaisons with members of the opposite sex.
It was a good ten minutes before tempers cooled and the show was
back on the air. At the end of the show, although the former two
parted without many courtesies, Mr. Perera and Dr. Jayawardena shared
a cup of tea and shook hands before they parted ways. All's well
that ends well many would say but those conducting the shows are
wondering what will happen in the upcoming rounds.
With Parliament now being one of the most popular stops in the educational
tours conducted for school children, hundreds visit the legislature
each day. A group of senior girls visiting from an outstation school
thought of taking a peek into the toilets on the fourth floor of
Parliament from where they enter the Chambers. "Aiyo, look
at the condition of the toilets in Parliament," one of them
remarked. They leave a lot to be desired, as any visitor would readily
Puttalam district MP Palitha Ranga Bandara raised a privilege matter
in Parliament last week in which he said that the Commission to
Investigate Allegations of Bribery and Corruption has re-opened
an investigation going by an anonymous petition received by it that
he accepted a donation of 16 plastic chairs when he was stationed
as the OIC at the Wellawa police station.
He said the
case was being re-opened as he had criticised the members of the
Commission in Parliament during the votes of the Justice Ministry
last November. He informed the House that the '16 chairs' were still
at the said police station since they had been donated in 1998 and
were being used by members of the public who visit the station.
queried that if receiving a donation of furniture was illegal under
the bribery and corruption laws, what is the position regarding
desks and chairs donated regularly to schools.