A group of senior members of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) today described SLFP stalwart Maithripala Sirisena contesting the upcoming Presidential polls as the common candidate against Mahinda Rajapaksa, is part of an international conspiracy to create political instability in Sri Lanka.
These remarks were made during a special media briefing that was convened by the SLFP a short while ago at the party headquarters to which senior SLFP-ers including newly appointed General Secretary Anura Priyadharshana Yapa and government Ministers Nimal Siripala de Silva, Dullas Alahapperuma, Susil Premajayantha and W. M. J. Senevirathne attended.
“What happened yesterday is a link in the chain of foreign conspiracies that seek to destabilize this country. There have been certain countries that have pumped money into this scheme through their embassies to establish a puppet regime in Sri Lanka. We warn them to put a stop to these activities,” government Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said. He said these forces will be revealed in the near future.
Minister Alahapperuma went on to state that Maithripala’s actions are part of a ‘mega teledrama’ that is being directed by former President Chandrika Kumaratunga.
“Yesterday he made certain pledges including the abolition of Executive Presidency within 100 days of being elected and appointing Ranil as the Prime Minister. Unfortunately, what he has promised is not even constitutionally feasible,” he added.
Meanwhile, government Minister and senior SLFP-er Susil Premajayantha who also spoke at the media briefing today said that there is still scope for UPFA coalition partner – JHU to work with the government and urged them to refrain from being a part of the conspiracy.
He also commented on the stance maintained by the JVP so far concerning the upcoming Presidential polls. “They have stated that the polls are illegal in order to justify their inability to contest at the upcoming elections. But let’s see whether their stance will change following the new political developments – if they do, their credibility will be at stake,” Premajayantha added.
Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva meanwhile said that SLFP-ers should decide whether to support those who have remained with the party or those who betrayed the party and left. “Maithri has no ethical grounds to remain in the party because during the discussion to select a candidate from UPFA, he raised his hand and agreed to the candidacy of President Rajapaksa,” he added.
He also said that former Minister Sirisena’s crossover and him competing against President Rajapaksa, is fuelled by personal reasons and not justifiable political reasons. “There are no perfect leaders or political parties. One must know how to survive within a party – our priority should be the party and its cadres,” he added.
Speaking further he said that despite the comments made by the UPFA ministers who crossed over yesterday along with Sirisena about more who are due to follow suit, they are not worried about it. “Irrelevant of who joins or leaves, we will win the upcoming elections because we are strong enough to do so,” he added. (Lakna Paranamanna)