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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2648

An Unblemished Character Worthy of Emulation - Late Hon A.C.S.Hameed

By Dickson Hemantha - Maryland, USA

Abdul Cader Shahul Hameed, famously known as A.C.S.Hameed, fondly known among his friends as Shahul, was the longest serving Minister of Foreign Affairs with considerably a long public life. Hailing from a highly reputable and educated family in Kurugoda, Akurana, he started his education at St.Anthony's, Katugastota and later joined Zahira College, Matale.

This future Foreign Minister, a clean politician who understood the burning problems of the people, was worth his weight in gold. A gentleman par excellence with admiring smiling face became popular in next to no time because of his altruistic dedication to uplift the life style of the impoverished families. He moved with the common touch and was emotional over the poignant grievances ofthe poor. He realized that helping the needy was a sacred duty of the more fortunate. Given the abysmal sufferings of the hapless poor people his wisdom of thought focused on finding immediateremedial measures to help resolve the burning cost of living.

Beginning his political career in 1956 he joined United National Party with the noble objective of sharing his contribution to develop the country. In March 1960 he was elected the 2nd MP for Harispatthuwa electorate and in 1970 he won Harispatthuwa as the 1st MP at the zenith of his popularity. A politician with Honesty and Generosity devoting his full time to find solution to the dire needs of the people rendered an excellent performance of duty in meeting the demands of urgent necessity attending to the positives than dwelling at negatives. His righteous and noble way of life influenced winning the hearts of both young and old who elected him again in 1977 with a sweeping majority where 78% of the population in his constituency were Buddhists.

People may doubt what you say. But they will believe what you do. President J.R.Jayawardane jubilant over the glorious victory of 5/6th majority in 1977 wanted to rebuild the image of Sri Lanka among the global community. In realizing the brilliancy of this young adorable active loyalist whose potential to become internationally renowned was appointed as the Foreign Minister by the President in his new cabinet. Acknowledging the confidence and responsibility trusted upon him by the President, he achieved the highest echelons of international recognition as a clean diplomat ever produced by Sri Lanka.

Strategically Sri Lanka Missions abroad were opened strengthening economic, trade and cultural relationship with many nations. It was an encouraging green light to those Sri Lankans seeking greener pasture over foreign employment particularly in the Middle East.

Hon Minister was soft spoken and apathetic character who never disappointed a visiting person reached him for help. Since I was fortunate to be closely working with him in the discharge of duties, I am well aware of his noble quality of Gratefulness and Patriotic Mind by which he served the people.

His policy was listening to the people as it is the best method of early identification of issues. One mouth to talk. Two ears to listen.

He was a Statesman and a prominent figure whose influence prompted the gift of Zia Hospital to Akurana named after late Zia-Ul-Haq, President of Pakistan. Development of Schools, Construction of Public thoroughfare, Supply of Electricity, Pipe born Water Service as well as Tube Wells to the Kandyan region displayed his adherence to the principles of a trustworthy parliamentarian when most politicians are far beyond. He was an inspiring and exemplary character to have associated with.

He never kicked away the ladder that helped him to rise up in life. His attempt to improve the University Education system as the Minister of Higher Education was applauded by the entire nation. A vigorous speaker and a disciplinarian always stood tall for national unity. He made tremendous share of contribution to eliminate the barriers which severely caused division of the society.

He did not favor any proposal to carve out separate administrative districts by ethnicity. He did everything possible through practical approach to unite all communities together for peaceful co-existence. He had a deep respect to Buddhism and other faiths as well. Remarkable contribution gifted to Buddhist temples in his constituency for development was a case in point. He was blessed with abundance of affection and attachment of the people until the time he breathed his last. He was a clean politician with credibility and integrity like a Lotus untouched by the murky and muddy waters. People who succeed speak well of themselves to themselves.

Hon M.H.A.Haleem, Minister of Muslim Religious Affairs representing Harisptthuwa, the nephew of the late minister, will continue to safeguard the noble principles of this Great Son of Sri Lanka who passed away on 3rd September,1999 leaving an irreplaceable vacuum in the political arena. Paradise is open to each and every person who lives a righteous and noble way of life.

- Asian Tribune -

Abdul Cader Shahul Hameed
An Unblemished Character Worthy of Emulation - Late Hon A.C.S.Hameed
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