SLFP rebels’ priority immediate LG polls

GL highlights five key points for Jt. Opp campaign


By Shamindra Ferdinando

A meeting chaired by former President and former Presidnet Mahinda Rajapaksa at his office at Jayanthi Place, Battaramulla last Friday, was informed of a five-point strategy to be followed in the wake of what Professor G. L. Peiris called a highly successful rally at Hyde Park last Thursday.

Addressing a group of lawyers from various parts of the country, Prof. Peiris called for a determined effort to pressure the government to hold local government elections.

About 250 lawyers attended the meeting.

Former External Affairs Minister Prof. Peiris stressed that compelling the government to hold local government polls should be their priority.

Prof. Peiris said a strong campaign against the implementation of the Geneva Resolution should be their second priority followed by protests directed at the proposed signing of the Economic and Technological Cooperation Agreement (ETCA), abuse of criminal justice system and failure to maintain law and order.

Prof. Peiris quoted former President Rajapaksa as having told the lawyers’ gathering that no one could scare them. MP Rajapaksa declared that real SLFP lawyers had thrown their weight behind him.

Prof. Peiris told The Island that formation of lawyers outfit was of pivotal importance to the overall strategy of the SLFP-led Joint Opposition campaign against the government. Prof. Peiris said the UNP and a section of the SLFP in power had been jolted by the Hyde Park rally close on the heels of their failure to attract adequate crowd for March 15 meeting in Colombo.

Meanwhile, professionals expressed serious concern over ETCA and the proposed Indian ambulance service expected to be established in Western and Southern Provinces. At a recent meeting held at the arts faculty auditorium of the Peradeniya University, the Engineers Association and the GMOA strongly criticized government moves. Retired Professor Gerald H. Peiris, who chaired the meeting told the gathering that the Indian elite believed the UK had caused a strategic error by not making Sri Lanka part of India at the time they were given independence. The elite was of the opinion that remedial action could be taken.

Gamini Nanda Gunawardena and Dr. Senal Fernando addressed the gathering on behalf of the Engineers Association and the GMOA, respectively.

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