Hesha wants Rauff and Bathiudeen removed from SJB

Samagi Jana Balavegaya MP Hesha Withanage

ECONOMYNEXT-Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) MP Hesha Withanage wants party leaders Rishad Bathiudeen and Rauff Hakeem expelled from the alliance because all their MPs have crossed over to the government.

Speaking to reporters this morning, he said that the party unanimously decided to oppose the 20th amendment during the parliamentary group meeting, “when party Leader Sajith Premadasa asked for anyone who is for the 20A everyone raised their hands against the 20A,” he said.

Further, he said that the Muslim and the Tamil MPs of the SJB that supported the 20th amendment already have a history of supporting the current government.

Also, he added that in order to save themselves from the labels by taking Bathiudeen and Hakeem, the government took the members of the parties they led.

“Action will be taken against everyone who voted for the 20th amendment disregarding the stand of the party as soon as possible,” Withanage claimed.

Earlier today a party spokesman, MP Ravi Jayawardena told EconomyNext that the SJB will seek to expel the MP Diana Gamage from the party and that means Gamage will lose her seat. The National List MP voted in favor of the government.

Of the 213 MPs in the House 156, an overwhelming majority more than two-thirds voted for with 57 against.

One MP who is a supporter of former Minister Bathiudeen also voted for the amendment. Bathiudeen who was brought out of quarantine and Remand to Parliament opposed the motion.

After the vote, Gamage told reporters that she had “voted with her conscience” as she had “faith in President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.”

She also denied that she had been paid money or given any privileges to vote for the government.(Colombo/Oct23/2020)

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Reported by Imesh Ranasinghe

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