The Socialist Equality Party (SEP) and the International Youth and Students for Social Equality (IYSSE) in Sri Lanka are holding an online lecture entitled “A program to defeat the preparations for dictatorial rule” at 3 p.m. on Sunday September 6. The event will be live-streamed on the party’s official Facebook page.
President Gotabhaya Rajapakse’s party—the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP)—which won an almost two-thirds majority in the August 5 general election, is intensifying its steps towards dictatorial rule. The new government will be the most right wing in Sri Lankan history. As the Rajapakse regime prepares an all-out offensive against social and democratic rights, working people and the oppressed masses face real dangers and must prepare to fight.
Rajapakse, a military man, has appointed in-service and retired senior military officers to head key ministries and institutions. He is rapidly seeking repeal of the 19th amendment to the constitution, which places limitations on the president’s powers, and wants a new constitution in order to establish a presidential dictatorship based on the military.
Without any guarantee that COVID-19 has been eradicated from the country, workers are being forced back to work under unsafe conditions. Schools are being reopened, exposing teachers and students to the danger of coronavirus infection. In the past three months, the working class has been hit by massive job and wage cuts, and increasing workloads.
The response of the working class to these attacks will be a wave of militant action. Such struggles, which were intensifying before the election, are resurging. The SLPP government, having won a solid majority, will soon abandon its phony election promises and, with the support of the opposition parties, launch an offensive against the working class.
On August 25, the SEP issued a statement explaining how and why the working class must fight the escalating moves towards dictatorship with its own independent class strategy. The SEP-IYSSE online lecture will explain these real dangers and the need for a socialist program and perspective to fight them.
We urge workers, young people, intellectuals and everyone determined to defend democratic rights to attend our online lecture and participate in this important political discussion.
Date and Time: Sunday, September 6, at 3 p.m.