Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna Presidential Candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa has announced several pro-poor measures in a series of rallies held in various parts of the country.
“We will ensure every poor family receives, free of charge, a bag of nutritious foodstuff as well as a government job for one member of the family,” he told the crowds at Polonnaruwa last week.
Gotabaya has also offered free fertilizer for paddy farmers and vegetable growers amid a number of concessions.
Speaking at the rallies Leader of the Opposition Mahinda Rajapaksa said that the government had run state enterprises that were profit-making into the ground and now Ministers were trying to take over some of them for personal gain. The Sevanagala sugar mill is an example he said.
At the Polonnaruwa rally, State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Wasantha Senanayake, who crossed over to the SLPP joined Gotabaya on the stage and traded a Green cap for the Maroon of the SLPP.
In October last year Senanayake, a descendant of the father of the nation Don Stephen Senanayake crossed over to the Rajapaksa camp and then came back to the UNP in a bewildering set of moves that set a new record for the Parliament of Sri Lanka for an MP who made the highest number of crossovers in the shortest period of time.