The UNP might have to contest under the elephant symbol as the Democratic National Front (DNF) has refused to allow Samagi Jana Balawegaya to use the swan symbol for a period of five years, said a senior member of the UNP who wished to remain anonymous.
He told Daily Mirror that the Elections Commission (EC) Chairman had said Samagi Jana Balawegaya should hold the swan symbol for five years if they were to borrow it, to which the DNF had not agreed.
Meanwhile, UNP MP Sujeewa Senasinghe told a press conference held yesterday that the DNF had already given its consent to handover the swan symbol to Samagi Jana Balawegaya to contest the upcoming general elections. “Matters will be finalised as per the decisions taken yesterday by the UNP Working Committee. The Constitution of Samagi Jana Balawegaya has already been finalised and will be out today,” he said.
On a different note, he said he would invite Mr. Premadasa to contest the general elections from the Colombo District. "Mr. Premadasa informed me that he was asked by many MPs to contest from Kurunegala, Gampaha and Kandy Districts. However, I will invite him to contest from Colombo," he said.
When asked if party leader Ranil Wickremesinghe would contest, he said he was most welcome to do so. At the same time, he said Mr. Wickremesinghe hinted that he would take a rest without being involved in the elections. “The new alliance has a great chance of winning the general elections with several issues including the high cost of living. MP Kumara Welgama and the former Army Commander have consented to contest under the ticket of Samagi Jana Balawegaya,” he said. (Yohan Perera)