Let’s proudly commemorate the 74th Independence Day of liberation of the country from the Crown of Britain and its establishment as an independent nation. There are a large number of men of the age who risked their lives to inherit freedom for the Motherland. It must be remembered that they sacrificed their lives for the noble cause of creating a land of free breathing for future generations, not for the pursuit of their narrow goals and, therefore, they deserve the tribute of the nation at this moment, states the Leader of the Opposition Sajith Premadasa in his Independence Day message.
The message adds: “Looking back in good conscience at the time that has elapsed since independence, we as a country, must realize with indifference that we have achieved innumerable victories and also suffered innumerable defeats. We know that there were, and still are, those who are dedicated for independence of the motherland with a genuine patriotism and honest nationalism and also opportunistic groups who have worked and are working for their narrow interests in this country.
“Until the dream of a sovereign, free and democratic country becomes a reality, we will never be forgiven by anyone who has sacrificed their lives in history for a free country and we must not deny that we have to stand firm for the creation of a free and independent country for realization of their pure and noble aspirations.
“It must be done in the name of democracy to secure the internal freedom in all fronts of political, economic, social, cultural, religious, media, etc. It should be emphasized that this cannot be done through ambitious political agendas.
The first, second and third priorities at this juncture should be to realize the secret of the progress of many countries which were behind us and to remove the narrow mindedness of opportunism and power hunger and to work towards a pragmatic agenda for safeguarding the motherland with genuine commitment.
“That honour should be bestowed with great devotion on all those who have dedicated and fought for the independence of our country and the freedom they wished for will not be meaningful only in boasting of the day of liberation from the imperialists but by creating an environment for Sri Lankans to live as a developed community by taking that progress forward step by step.
“We with all of you to have the strength and courage to win that struggle and to work proudly as a developed and modern nation”.