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EDITORIAL : CBK BREAKS SILENCE WITH A BANG

5 February 2015 07:19 pm - 18     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, who is reported to have played a major role in paving the way for the common opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena to come forward and topple the Rajapaksa regime, made some bombshell disclosures this week about what happened in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) during the past 35 years.

In a 75-minute television interview, Ms. Kumaratunga said she could not and dared not disclose what she was revealing now because both the interviewer and she might have faced death after a notorious white van abduction.

One of the main disclosures was that in early 2005 when the SLFP Central Committee met to decide on a candidate for the presidential election, as many as 57 of the 61 members had opposed the nomination of Mahinda Rajapaksa. However, since there was no suitable alternative at that time, she decided to nominate Mr. Rajapaksa though even at that time she saw some leadership potential in minister and SLFP General Secretary Maithripala Sirisena and told him to build up those leadership qualities.  

After a campaign during which there were major disputes between Ms. Kumaratunga and Mr. Rajapaksa, he eventually won the election on November 18. Ms. Kumaratunga claimed that when she called the new President to congratulate him on November 19 he screamed at her in bad language for 19 minutes. She said she just listened to what he was saying but timed it and said only one word in response, though she did not mention what the word was. Ms. Kumaratunga said that in 1981 when the then President J. R. Jayewardene stripped her mother Sirimavo Bandaranaike of her civic rights, a rebel group in the party sought her removal from the post of party president also. This rebel group included Maithripala Senanayake, Mahinda Rajapaksa and Anura Bandaranaike. Ms. Kumaratunga said she and her husband Vijeya Kumaratunga along with other party stalwarts fought back to keep Sirimavo Bandaranaike in the party and she contested the 1989 presidential election.

Another conspiracy not widely disclosed before, came after Ranil Wickremesinghe became the Prime Minister in December 2001 while Ms. Kumaratunga was the President. She charged that Mr. Rajapaksa had secretly negotiated with Mr. Wickremesinghe to get about 30 SLFP MPs to support an impeachment motion against Ms. Kumaratunga. She said she was aware of what was happening and found that only five SLFP MPs were ready to support the impeachment. The move was dropped at that point. Disclosing the secret details of what happened during the past few years, Ms. Kumaratunga said rumblings among senior SLFP members started after 2010 when the Rajapaksa family took control of the government and the party. Many SLFP seniors had negotiated with her secretly and urged her to lead a rebel group but she did not wish to enter politics directly because of the breakdown of the rule of law, the politicisation of the judiciary and the police and the mega corruption deals amounting to millions of dollars.

The scenario changed early last year when the Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Nayake Thera, as leader of the National Movement for Social Justice, came forward to initiate a common opposition front to topple the Rajapaksa regime. Ms. Kumaratunga said it was at this point that she approached Maithripala Sirisena to come forward as the common opposition candidate. At first he was reluctant or afraid because as Mr. Sirisena later said he was taking a big risk that could mean death for him and the family if he failed. However the Rajapaksa domination was getting so unbearably bad that on November 6, Mr. Sirisena agreed to quit the government and cross over. From that point super-secret talks were held with the then UNP Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and other opposition party leaders. Thus when Mr. Sirisena eventually announced on November 21 that he was crossing over with a few other ministers, it took the Rajapaksa regime by complete surprise and even the State Intelligence Services’ chief was removed for not being aware of what happened.

Eventually Mr. Sirisena went on to win the election and change the history of Sri Lanka with an all-party National Unity Government which is being widely seen as a model or miracle of Asia. 
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  Comments - 18

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  • chimpa Friday, 06 February 2015 06:43 PM

    It is a good lesson

    Naga Ramalingam Friday, 06 February 2015 08:33 PM

    An important information is missing in this article. She said she had been communicating and complaining to foreign countries including, USA, UK, and France. We now know how much these countries were interested in seeing MR out. Beyond doubt what MR said was true- the election was between MR and CBK spearheaded by her own vanity, egoism and Bandaranaike mentality. Person who benefitted at the end was Ranil who got the Premiership through a treacherous way Not through his own merits.

    Eds Friday, 06 February 2015 02:56 PM

    Oh yeah Mrs. Kumaranatunga, we believe you........dont worry we believe you!

    siripala Friday, 06 February 2015 03:26 PM

    It is good that Chandrika has open her mouth.This will increase more votes towards mahinada rajapaksa.

    Chootiputha Friday, 06 February 2015 09:47 PM

    Well CBK surely has an ax to grind. But who wants blatant corruption of MR. Helping Hambantota fraud was disgraceful. Sarath N Silva has given proof beyond doubt. UNP should go to town with this to win in the General Elections.

    Samuel Friday, 06 February 2015 03:29 PM

    Why do these guys feel it is corrupted when CBK is in power and it is not while MR was in power ? It is the double standards of lankan people in general. Just because relay race of war terminated in MR terms means not that the man could give the leadership to the highly literate nation.

    Yosuf Friday, 06 February 2015 03:37 PM

    Well Madam you have done a good job. please do your best to keep the coalition in tact till you all win the next election. Like before there are groups behind the scene working day and night to topple this Govt. We are behind Ex. Maitheepala and Hon. Ranil. . The coalition we have now is the best combination.

    silva Friday, 06 February 2015 11:46 AM

    United we stand divided we fall. So the unity is the strength and that is the secret of success of anything.

    Shirley Siriwardena Friday, 06 February 2015 03:47 PM

    I share the comments made by Saman Kularatne. People in glass houses should not throw stones. Let Mr Sirisena appoint a committee to investigate corruption of all politicians since 1977, when the "Free Markets" economy was blessed and introduced to Sri Lanka. WE may find astonishing surprises.We voted out politicians with honesty, integrity, ethics and education. Nm, Colvin, Leslie, Pieter, Dudley, Philip and the rest. They said what they believed and practiced what they believe. Can you say that now?

    Asoka Friday, 06 February 2015 11:51 PM

    Only Sinhalese are corrupt? Not a single Muslim or Tamil in corruption. Are these Muslims and Tamils are saints? Last 67 years who robbed wealth of Sri Lanka? Answer is with you.

    Perumal Friday, 06 February 2015 08:03 AM

    True,we hate MR and his family for corruption, waste and persecution of the people.But we hate CB more for the same reasons plus outright lying.

    Vijay Jayalath Friday, 06 February 2015 04:44 PM

    I read above few comments and wish to add mine.Most of them are suffering from inferiority complex. These gullible people need consultation. Such type are still hanging around media centres especially in the ITN. If there is any sincerity prevailing on this earth let sanity prevail. Do not sling mud at people who risked their lives to protect this country and stop protecting hypocrites and worthless upst6arts.

    Faris Friday, 06 February 2015 04:44 PM

    Few people hate Mahinda will realize later who was he? today we are walking peacefully because he destroyed ruthless terrorist in SL and they are in a verge of come back again

    Saman Kularatne Friday, 06 February 2015 12:13 PM

    I think people who have some sense of the ordinary world, know the capabilities and the overwhelming weaknesses of this former head of state, who brought ill repute to the most superior post of the Presidency, through her self-ego, constant tardiness and greed. I am not a MR fan... But if one assesses neutrally on the contribution that these 2 leaders rendered to Sri Lanka, MR with all his weaknesses, stand out far ahead than this corrupt and lazy individual.

    DIneshan RFM Friday, 06 February 2015 08:10 AM

    Story behind the story!

    Nanda Friday, 06 February 2015 12:36 PM

    Absolutely true. This is pure hatred and jealousy.

    RMC Friday, 06 February 2015 09:19 AM

    We should know background and underhand financial transaction involvement if any as general public beleives

    Wesley moses Friday, 06 February 2015 09:19 AM

    Its is true, Its a miracle of Sri Lanka 2015 ,


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