Parties weakened to cause political turmoil – govt.

‘Maithripala is used by Western powers’


by Shamindra Ferdinando

The government yesterday alleged that former SLFP General Secretary Maithripala Sirisena lacked foresight to realise that he was being used by Western powers to weaken the largest single political party in parliament.

The government asserted that Maithripala Sirisena was pursuing an agenda extremely inimical to the country at the behest of Western powers.

Foreign Employment Minister Dilan Perera claimed that those having the ultimate control of the project had brought in Maithripala Sirisena as they realized UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe couldn’t take on incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Having brought in Maithripala Sirisena at the expense of Wickremesinghe and the UNP, Wickremesinghe had been assured of premiership in the next government to ensure his support for the project.

Minister Perera was addressing the media at SLFP headquarters at T.B. Jayah Mawatha. The minister emphasized that foreign affairs weren’t Maithripala Sirisena’s strong point; therefore the former health minister could be in a dilemma.

When The Island pointed out that Minister Perera and Agriculture Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena had made contradictory statements as regards Maithripala Sirisena and Wickremesinghe roles, Dilan Perera said that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operated through various proxies to achieve political/military objectives.

Minister Perera said that Maithripala Sirisena too could have been given false assurance that the presidency could be his if he could secure just 10 per cent of the SLFP vote. The former health minister could have been enticed by an opportunity to become the president especially in the wake of his prime ministerial ambitions not being fulfilled.

Minister Abeywardena said that major political parties were vulnerable to the on-going Western project meant to split them. Maithripala Sirisena’s unexpected move shouldn’t be viewed in isolation but in the backdrop of the overall picture. Minister Abeywardena said that the breakup of the SLFP and UNP could result in political chaos. For want of major parties, the country could never be able to have stable governments. The minister asserted that an attempt was being made to form a new political party involving the UNP and SLFP.

The Minister alleged that the JVP acted as if it could fill the vacuum caused by the weakening of the SLFP and UNP. But that would never be a reality, he said, reminding the circumstances under which the TULF became the main Opposition party in parliament years ago. The emergence of the TULF paved the way for bloody terrorism that couldn’t be crushed for over three decades.

Minister Abeywardena claimed that both Wickremesinghe and Maithripala Sirisena had been duped.

They said that Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha thera had been silent most probably due to Maithripala Sirisena’s camp conveniently dropping the much touted vow to abolish executive presidency. Minister Abeywardena pointed out that Ven. Athureliye Rathana thera had declared Maithripala Sirisena would serve the full six year term, whereas Ven. Sobitha pushed for abolition of presidency.

Commenting on the relationship between Maithripala Sirisena’s camp and the five-party Tamil National Alliance (TNA), Minister Perera said that soon after the former SLFP General Secretary announced his candidature, the TNA in no uncertain terms revealed its support for the renegade SLFPer. However, the TNA subsequently, asserted that it wouldn’t support any candidate as Maithripala Sirisena’s camp felt such an association would be disadvantageous to the Opposition candidate.

Minister Perera said that Maithripala Sirisena’s recent declaration that he had deprived the SLFP-led UPFA a two-thirds majority in parliament underscored the mentality of the man. Maithripala Sirisena was seeking to undermine post-war political stability and cause uncertainty, the minister said.

Minister Perera said that there were only few political parties in addition to the SLFP and UNP. According to him, the JVP, General Sarath Fonseka’s Democratic Party and the TNA were the other political parties worth mentioning about.

The minister alleged that twice president Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga was leading the anti-Sri Lanka project. The Badulla District MP accused Mrs Kumaratunga of trying to settle a score.

Referring to the massacre of children at a Pakistani military school, Minister Perera said that Sri Lanka faced a similar situation at the time the then Premier Mahinda Rajapaksa won the Nov 2005 presidential election. Minister Abeywardena recalled the suicide attack directed at a train at the Fort Railway station. That blast claimed the lives of several students of D.S. Senanayake College, Colombo, the minister said, adding that it would be the responsibility of the electorate to ensure victory for President Rajapaksa.

Maithripala Sirisena could only pave the way for an unstable administration and turmoil, Minister Perera warned. What it would be? Who would be at the helm? Would it be Ranil Wickremesinghe or Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga or General Fonseka?

Commenting on Maithripala Sirisena’s threat to prevent government leaders from leaving the country after January 8, 2015 election, Minister Perera said that the Opposition presidential candidate sometimes reminded them of General Fonseka, who faced incumbent president at the last presidential election.

At the conclusion, Minister Perera said that except for President Rajapaksa contesting on the UPFA ticket, all other presidential hopefuls were from little heard political parties, including Maithripala Sirisena’s present political outfit used by Gen. Fonseka at the last presidential poll. The minister asserted that the failure of the UNP as well as the JVP to contest presidential poll wasn’t a good sign.

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