Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna is not prepared to vote President Maithripala Sirisean into presidency for another term, in spite of the party being prepared to coalesce with the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) led by the President in order to topple the government led by the United National Party (UNP), Gampaha District leader of the SLPP, Prasanna Ranatunga said.
The Parliamentarian said during a programme organised by his party under the theme "Gama Samaga Pilisandarak" (a dialogue with the village) held at the Nadagamuwa Village Hotel in Kotugoda on Saturday that people of this country did not like the SLPP team up with the SLFP as an electoral coalition.
Ranatunga who is also a former Chief Minister of the Western Province stated that several individuals including the General Secretary of the SLFP were hell bent to tie up the Lotus Bud (SLPP) with the SLFP in order to make Maithripala Sirisena the President again whereas people of this country preferred to make former President Mahinda Rajapaksa leader of this country.
We are not prepared to fall into the same trap twice. We are going for negotiations with the SLFP with a clear mind and alert. Therefore nobody would be able to hoodwink us this time, Ranatunga added.
Lashing out at SLFP General Secretary Dayasiri Jayasekara for criticizing the SLPP, he questioned as to who Dayasiri was to criticize the SLPP. "He can talk about his party and its programmes, but not about our party which is based on a clear policy. We do not betray our policy for cheap political or economic gains. We do not jump from one side to another like frogs" he said.
Commenting on the next Presidential election Ranatunga said SLPP would field its own candidate and whoever contest on behalf of the SLPP would win and nobody would be able to prevent it.
"Some former SLFP ministers who stayed behind during the vote on the budget in fear of the UNP say that their next Presidential candidate is the incumbent President Maithripala Sirisena. We clearly tell them that we want to team up with the SLFP not to vote Maithripala Sirisena into Presidency again, but to topple this government in order to vote a person who loves this country into power, the Parliamentarian added.(Pushpakumara Mallawarachchi)