Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka)
Spoken English Inferiority vs. superiority complex
Speaking in English is the gateway to success no doubt. In today’s high-tech modern society, there is very little chance for anyone to go up in life. Sri Lankan youth specially those who come from Sinhala, Tamil-speaking backgrounds have to play second fiddle when they have to compete with urban English-speaking youth although they possess higher qualifications in studies and sometimes having degrees to support their position.
It is very pathetic how our senior English professionals do not give a helping hand to less-fortunate newcomers to the profession who are not given a chance to talk in English. They make sure that they only talk in their native language and so they are stuck in the same position.this is because if they improve language skills, these newcomers can be a threat to the senior lot, to a point seniors can lose their jobs.a considerable percentage of English-speaking professionals have jobs thanks to their language proficiency.
According to statistics English in Sri Lanka is fluently spoken by approximately 23.8% of the population, and widely used for official and commercial purposes. It is the native language of approximately 74,000 people, mainly in urban areas.
English is widely spoken and understood, especially in urban areas and among the younger generations.this is largely due to the country’s colonial history, as Sri Lanka was ruled by the British for over a century until gaining independence in 1948.
Unlike Sri Lanka, most colonized African countries kept English as their official language. That is why they speak better English than their masters as the saying goes.
SWRD Bandaranaike’s Sinhala Only Policy
Act in 1956 made matters worse for the youth. It was a mere political slogan to attract voters specially the rural provinces where the bigger population lived. We as a country facing the repercussions of SWRD’S such narrow-minded and selfish policies, stuck in the mud unable to communicate with the rest of the world.
His daughter former President Chandrika Kumaratunga had to apologized from the nation for her father’s short-sighted policy.
CHAMPIKA MUNIDASA COLOMBO