Attempt to appoint confidants of PM to UNP working committee

Attempt to appoint confidants of PM to UNP working committee

Written by Staff Writer

21 Sep, 2019 | 12:55 am

Colombo (News 1st): Details regarding an attempt to appoint close confidants of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to working committee of the UNP came to light today (September 20). Amila Ruwan of the Gajasavi Peramuna noted that they questioned Ranil Wickremesinghe to not humiliate himself further as the country is hoping for Sajith Premadasa to become the Presidential candidate.

He said they have received information that in the coming few days that you are trying to name the people who desire the 27 vacant posts in the working committee and hold a vote at the working committee.  While there are reports such as this claiming that Ranil Wickremesinghe is attempting to appoint his confidants to the working committee, the Island Newspaper reported an article under the headline “Ranil to throw his hat into the ring”

The Island newspaper reported today, Prime Minister and UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe would submit his name for the post of a presidential candidate to the nomination board to be appointed at the UNP Working Committee meeting scheduled to be held next week.

Zacky Jabbar of the Island Newspaper had quoted party sources. Following his appointment as the leader of the United National Party in 1994, during the past 25 years, the party was defeated in approximately 30 elections, under his leadership.

Wickremesinghe first contested the presidential election in 1999, five years after he refrained from filling in the presidential candidacy of the party, which was left vacant following the death of Gamini Dissanayaka in 1994. Wickremesinghe who suffered a massive defeat against his opponent Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga was subsequently defeated by Mahinda Rajapaksa in 2005.

He was not able to make the UNP victorious at the 1994 general election. In 2001, as a result of the struggles of the young UNP members, they were able to win the general election and establish a government. Ranil Wickremesinghe was not even able to hold on to the victory for longer than 2 years.

In the years 2010 and 2015, he shrouded himself behind common candidates and did not contest the Presidential polls. In 2010 when the then common candidate Sarath Fonseka lost the election, it was Ranil Wickremesinghe who came forward first to accept defeat and claim that the election was free and fair.

In 2015 too Ranil Wickremesinghe resorted to his usual form and hid behind a common candidate. He then took over the Prime Minister-ship with a minority in Parliament. Since 2001, this leader has dragged the UNP behind at all elections and is currently holding on to his position with the support of the parties that are in alliance with him.

Ranil Wickremesinghe who has never come into power with the blessings of the people used the opportunity to grab hold the powers of the executive when President Maithripala decided to curtail the powers of the executive.

These attempts were made futile to a certain degree when several parties including this media network took the matter up with the Supreme Court, however, certain powers of the executive are now in the hands of the Prime Minister and the Speaker. As a result of the greed for power, the country is in political chaos.

Ranil Wickremesinghe who portrays himself as a staunch supporter and a fervent believer of democracy has only acted to suppress democracy to ensure the longevity of his position.

For the past 25 years, when the leadership of the United National Party was challenged, steps were taken by Ranil Wickremesinghe to establish various committees with several of his confidants. It was clear to the people and especially to the UNP supporters that minimum attention was given to the fact that they were actually/ losing/ elections.

At present, Ranil Wickremesinghe has taken steps to remove several people who have challenged him at the UNP Working Committee and replaced them with people who are his confidants and people who he can manipulate and control.

His advisers now are people like President’s Counsel Nissanka Nanayakkara who was a member of the committee that compiled reports to protect Ranil Wickremesinghe from the Bond scam and people like Lasantha Gunawardena who was expelled from the Lanka Puthra bank for corruption.

Ranil Wickremesinghe’s latest tactic is at play now. He is trying to take advantage of the UNP constitution and appoint a nominations committee within the working committee itself to determine the Presidential candidate.

This is being done in a situation where a majority of the UNPers along with other affiliated parties and parliamentarians have decided that Sajith Premadasa is the candidate that can make both the party and its supporters victorious.

Is Ranil Wickremesinghe trying to set up a so-called nominations committee with the working committee in a bid to make the party victorious?

Ranil Wickremesinghe has been living off public money in his 40-year political career and while he is Prime Minister.

As Ranil Wickremesinghe continues to care less about the victory of the party and the UNPers, is he once again trying to resort to the position of opposition leader and continue to live off public funds?

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