In the backdrop of a brewing political crisis, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe held talks with Minister Sajith Premadasa for one and half hours at Temple Trees on Thursday evening to find a way out, a party official said.
Mr. Premadasa took time off from a function at a temple in Embilipitiya and rushed to Colombo for a meeting convened by the Prime Minister and accompanied by Non-Cabinet Minister, Dr. Harsha de Silva. Minister Rajitha Senaratne was with the Prime Minister.
Dr. de Silva said there was cordial, open discussion on the current situation, and called it a positive meeting.
Asked whether the Prime Minister agreed to nominate Mr. Premadasa as the candidate, he replied, “The discussion was not on that, but how to select the candidate. It is a discussion based on data and facts on the ground.”
Dr. de Silva said he would play the role of go-between in resolving the internal crisis. The meeting that started at 9.30 p.m. lasted till 11.00 p.m.
Mr. Premadasa has already spelt out that he will contest the presidential elections no matter what. On Thursday, UNP Legal Secretary Nissanka Nanayakkara said the party constitution does not provide for the nomination of the presidential candidate until the elections are declared by the Election Commission. (Kelum Bandara)