Rajapaksa faction beckons Sri Lanka Freedom Party members; says govt mandate ended

ECONOMYNEXT – A 56 -member faction of Sri Lanka Freedom Party supporting ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa has made overtures to government members to join them to form an administration, after a new party backed by them swept local bodies at Saturday’s polls.

"We are asking the members of the SLFP who are supporting the government to think seriously about their political future," Ratnapura Parliamentarian Pavithra Wanniarachchi said.

Sri Lanka Poduja Peramuma has won a landslide in yesterday’s local election though official results are yet declared. Wannirarachchi said out of 340 local the SLPP was confident of having a majority on their own in at least 243.

G L Pieris, Chairman of the newly set up Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna which is heading for a landslide victory showed that the Sirisena-Ranil Wickremesinghe administration no longer had a mandate and it should step down.

"This election was a referendum on the policies of the government," he told reporters. "The government has no moral right to continue.

"It is clear that the SLFP members has does not accept the leadership of President Sirisena.

The Sri Lanka Freedom Party contested under an overall front of the United People’s Freedom Alliance and is split between ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Maithripala Sirisena.

The UPFA is trailing at a distant third after Wickremesinghe’s United National Party in the polls.

UPFA member Dinesh Gunewardene said no ruling party had ever suffered such a loss.

UPFA members said they had 56 members and President Sirisena should ask them to form a government. (Colombo/Feb11/2018)





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