UNP blames Sajith for election loss; Ranil not taking National List seat

Wajira Abeywardena

Following the United National Party’s unprecedented defeat at the 2020 parliamentary election, the senior leaders of the ‘grand old party’ convened a meeting at headquarters – Sirikotha on Friday evening (07) to discuss the election result and future course of action.

Speaking to reporters following the meeting, UNP National Organiser Daya Gamage stated that the party decided to carry out reforms and move forward.

Asked about the election result, the former minister said he believes that the people decided that the government should be from the President’s party and also that former deputy leader Sajith Premadasa destroyed the UNP and destroyed himself.

Former minister Vajira Abeywardena, responding to questions regarding Ravi Karunanayake, said that there is no need to point fingers at any person over the defeat.

When asked about the SLPP forming a government with two-thirds majority, he said that the main group responsible for that is the Sajith Premadasa faction.

He also claimed that Premadasa ruined himself and the UNP along with his political campaign. Abeywardena stated that they gave their full backing to Premadasa at the last presidential election, but he failed to win and now the 5.5 million votes have dropped to 2.6 million.

The UNP failed to win a single seat at the 2020 general election despite polling 249,435 votes (2.15%), however the party did win one National List seat.

UNP Organiser for Divulapitiya Dr. Kithsiri Manchanayake stated that a decision would be taken regarding the National List seat come Monday, along with a host of other important decisions such as the future of the party and leadership.

Responding to a question, he said that UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe will not enter parliament from the National List seat as he is not a person who will enter parliament after being defeated.

Meanwhile former UNP MP and ‘Samagi Jana Balawegaya’ member Nalin Bandara told reporters that the UNP leadership is still not willing to accept that the UNP has been destroyed today and kindly urged Wickremesinghe and his group to handover leadership of the party to the group backed by the people and supporters.

“At least now please understand that the leader in the hearts of the UNP supporters is Sajith Premadasa and handover the party to him. Because as true UNPers, we cannot stand this present situation,” he said.

(Source: Ada Derana)