Speaking in parliament, leader of the Tamil National Peoples' Front (TNPF) Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam called into question Sri Lanka’s exorbitant military spending of 10.35% of the annual budget
“10.35% in a situation where there is no war” he stated. “Who is your enemy?”
“No country has attacked Sri Lanka, no your enemy is within. You consider your own citizens as enemies. Why? Because you don't want to recognise their rights, you would rather kill them, you’d rather wage war than have them become productive citizens” he stated.
He added: “Your defence policy is based on making sure the Tamils don't get their rights. Your foreign policy is based on making sure the Tamils don't get their rights”.
Commenting on rampant Islamophobia in Sri Lanka, he stated: “This time you've picked another enemy, the Muslims. You need that bogeyman to continue your racist and corrupt policies where only you line your pockets, not the citizens”.
“Now you continue to militarise, today you need to militarise to protect against the Sinhalese, the common man”.
“People cannot make ends meet and they will not forgive you. For 73 years you blamed war, and the Tamils and the Muslims. Now there is no more people to blame. This time you will pay a price”.
Ponnambalam concluded stress that:
“There is no point blaming just this government, you have to call into question 73 years of government policy”.