“UNP candidate will be named after election is gazetted”: Akila Viraj Kariyawasam

“UNP candidate will be named after election is gazetted”: Akila Viraj Kariyawasam

Written by Staff Writer

30 Aug, 2019 | 11:20 pm

Colombo (News 1st): Legal secretary of the UNP, Nissanka Nanayakkara says, the presidential candidate of the UNP, should be named after the election commission declares a presidential election.

He noted that Article 9 of the party constitution states “The nomination board will decide on the candidate and this decision will have to be ratified by the working committee of the party.” He said it means that first, the elections commission must announce the presidential election and it is only after the election is announced that the working committee will convene.

However, UNP General Secretary Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam noted that they can do it after the election is gazetted or even before the election is gazetted. He added that they can hold discussions on the matter and decide on it in the future.

Former General Secretary of the UNP Tissa Attanayake noted that there is no specific time frame for it and that the best example is the presidential election in 2005. He noted that during the 2005 presidential election, they named Ranil Wickremesinghe as the presidential candidate at the party convention a year before the elections.

He said at the party convention, they decided that Ranil Wickremesinghe should be named as the presidential candidate and strengthen his leadership. Attanayake said nowhere in the constitution of the UNP or the traditions of the party does it dictate that the party must wait till the dates for the election is announced or the election is gazetted to name a presidential candidate.

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