Minister Sirisena fears assassination bid



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by Dilanthi Jayamanne

Minister Sirisena alleges media targeting him at the behest of his political enemies.
Pic by Nishan S. Priyantha


Health Minister and SLFP General Secretary Maithripala Sirisena yesterday alleged that there was an attempt by a section of the media to destroy him.


The minister was addressing a hastily arranged media briefing, at his official residence, following his son Daham Sirsena’s involvement in a brawl where Asela Waidyalankara, the son of DIG Baticaloa, Ravi Waidyalankara sustained injuries on Sunday in Passekudah. 


"If those trying to tarnish my image through the media fail, they may even try to assassinate me," Minister Sirisena said.


He alleged that a media outfit had been attacking him since Oct. 2011 because of his refusal to side with one of the parties involved in the Kolonnawa  dispute which led to the death of former MP Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra. "I also cannot understand why another private print media, which is openly supportive of the government, has also decided to carry out a malicious attack against me," Minister Sirisena said. 


He appealed to all media institutions to sink differences and support the President and the government at this juncture when there were foreign conspirators were attempting to censure the country in Geneva. He asked: "The media should be cautious and not try to cause upheaval in the country. Why is the General Secretary of the governing party being attacked in this manner? Is it so bring the UNP back to power or tarnish the country’s image at a time the UNHRC sessions are on?"


Sirisena claimed that the LTTE had made several attempts on his life. However, now there were other forces, which were unable to stomach some of the changes that were being made in the government health sector and had gone to the extent of warning his wife and family that they would assassinate him outside his official residence at Rosemead Place.


Explaining some of the reasons for those threats, the minister said that the draft of the National Medicinal Drug Policy was being re-drafted as the first draft had disappeared in the office of the Legal Draftsman, and a new tender procedure would be implemented from next month with a view to eliminating irregularities in tenders for drugs and medical equipment. Officers were being trained on its mechanism at present, he added.  


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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