Relatives in politics nothing new – Susil


By Saman Indrajith

Environment Minister Susil Premajayantha, on behalf of the government, told Parliament yesterday that action would be taken to ensure that the forthcoming provincial council elections were free and fair.

The Minister was responding to queries raised by Chief Opposition Whip John Amaratunga, who made a special statement on election violence and expressed fears that the elections would not be free and fair, as most of the candidates were relatives of powerful ministers.

Premjayantha said: "Relatives in politics is not a new issue. Even Dudley Senanayake, son of first Prime Minister of this country, D. S. Senanayake, succeeded his father. After S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike, Sirimavo became the prime minister. Their son Anura Bandaranaike entered politics. Chandrika Bandaranaike became the President of the country.

In international politics, too, there are examples. The son of the US President George Bush, too, became a president. When junior Bush became the president of the US, his brother was the governor in the State of Florida. This is common in Bangladesh and in India. It is very common in politics.

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