‘Maithri will be sworn-in immediately’

Mangala Samaraweera

Common opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena will be sworn in immediately if he is elected the President of this country, the common opposition said today.

Joint spokesman for the common candidate and UNP MP Mangala Samaraweera told a media briefing that Mr. Sirisena would be sworn  it by January 10 if he wins the presidential election and would not allow the incumbent president to continue for two years as mentioned by some ruling party members.

He also said the opposition had no intention of instigating violence in the event a second preference count takes place after the election.  He made this point with regard to an allegation made by the head of a pro government organization recently.

Mr. Samaraweera said action would be taken against all prominent state personnel who get the junior officers of the state to engage in election work of the ruling party candidate. Accordingly he said action would be taken against high ranking police officers and ministry secretaries who engaged in election work.

The other joint spokesman Dr. Rajitha Senarathe who responded to a statement made by Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa that there were traitors in the opposition and patriots in the government, said Mr. Rajapaksa was not a member of the armed forces during the initial stages of the war. He said the real hero behind the war was former Army Chief Sarath Fonseka. However Dr. Senaratne said Fonskea did not heed to his request not to contest for the presidency in 2010. Dr. Senarathe said he was fully against the arrest of Fonseka by the present regime.

UPFA national list MP Dr. Rajeewa Wijesinha who also participated in the news conference alleged that all ambassadors who are stationed at Sri Lankan missions abroad had also been called in to engage in political work today.

Meanwhile Galle District JNP leader Aruna Takshala De Silva and SLFPs Ratgama Organizer M. Gunapala De Silva later joined in the briefing and said they had decided to back the common candidate.

(Daily Mirror)