- Senior sources said that several party members had made it clear that they wanted a young leader to take over as the party
By JAMILA HUSAIN
The Working Committee (WC) of the United National Party, who was likely to announce the new party leader before the UNP’s anniversary on September 6, has decided to postpone its meeting this week as no decision has been made as yet on who the next party leader would be.
The Daily Mirror learns in the last WC meeting, the Committee had decided to convene this week to announce its decision, but senior party members said the WC is likely to convene next week or the week after with no possible date set as yet.
Discussions are still underway with all the contenders and a final decision is yet to be reached on who the next leader would be. This leads to the UNP celebrating its 74th anniversary on September 6 with Ranil Wickremesinghe still as its leader.
Senior party sources said that when the Committee convenes next, a decision on who would be the next leader and would likely be announced as discussions would be finalised by next week. Ruwan Wijewardena, Karu Jayasuriya, Ravi Karunanayake, Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, Vajira Abeygunawardena and Arjuna Ranatunga, who is the latest to join the bandwagon, are possible contenders for the leadership post.
Senior sources said that several party members had made it clear that they wanted a young leader to take over as the party had to carry out vigorous reforms to gain back the confidence of its voters.
The WC is also working at reaching a unanimous decision among its members on the next leader rather than going in for a vote. The UNP seat in Parliament will remain vacant until a new party leader is chosen.