UNP reformists want secret ballot for leader’s post
The United National Party (UNP) reformists led by the party’s co-deputy leaders Karu Jayasuriya and Sajith Premadasa are pushing for a secret ballot at the two working committee meetings to select a new party leader.
Party sources said that amid the fresh tussle for a leadership change, the UNP would hold a special working committee meeting tomorrow to take some important decisions such as a secret ballot for leadership posts.
Earlier UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe expressed confidence in going for a vote at the working committee while deputy leader Karu Jayasuriya said yesterday he would contest for the post of party leader at a secret ballot.
When asked for a comment Moneragala district parliamentarian Ranjith Madduma Bandara a Jayasuriya loyalist said the question of a secret ballot would not be taken up at tomorrow’s meeting.
“I believe there will be two separate working committee meetings later to finalise the process. At one meeting, the motion will be moved calling for a secret ballot. The other meeting will be summoned to conduct this secret ballot. Tomorrow’s meeting will not focus on these matters,” he said.
UNP parliamentarian Ravi Karunanayake who is a confidant of Mr. Wickremesinghe said the working committee would meet tomorrow but it would not discuss this matter.
Meanwhile deputy leader Karu Jayasuriya announced his candidature for the post of party leader.
In a hard hitting statement, Mr. Jayasuriya accused a few among the present leadership who were holding the vast majority of supporters and the nation to ransom. He said these persons were working for their personal benefit.
“This is why the tireless campaign by me and my colleagues who seek reform to ensure democracy, transparency and the creation of a vibrant opposition has failed. We have time and again taken up these issues with Mr. Wickremesinghe but I say with great sadness and pain of mind that all our sincere efforts have failed. We have only been isolated,” Mr. Jayasuriya said.
He said though the UNP preached democracy to outsiders, it was not allowed in the party.
“We preach for democracy. But there is no democracy in our party. We preach on the need for transparency in the party. But there is no transparency in the party. We preach about unity in the party. Instead, there is a devious kind of manipulation to cause disharmony and seek revenge. We complain of authoritarianism in the government but forget that it is present in greater measure in our party,” he said.
Referring to his decision to join the government in 2007, he said he was only motivated by his resolve to support the government in the fight against terrorism.
“War is now over. But, peace has not arrived. Violence and corruption is on the rise. By hindsight, I have often wondered whether I had made an error of judgment. However, I must emphasise that in doing what I did, I went through the front door and came back also through the same door,” he said.
While announcing his candidacy to contest for the leadership, he said he took that decision to save the party and to unite it.
Courtesy: DM Online
Why all this cloak and dagger exercises?
RW was seen in the company of Dr JJ and Muzzamill at the press conference today. That shows that ‘rats are leaving the sinking ship’.
Mr Premadasa’s cloak and dagger will not get him anywhere. Nor will the illegally amassed family wealth do so.
If Mr P is an honest man, he should write off the Premadasa family wealth straight away.
As JS said elsewhere on this blog site, Buddhika Pathirana is an apt choice for leader at this critical juncture.
An Excellent suggestion.RW wants to cling on to Power by using all undemocratic methods.I really would endorse Dr.Buddhika’s name as the most suitable to take over.He has good acedemic qualifications,Family heritage and a very good Voter base.
Thank you AUJ for endorsing my views.
I have been closely following Dr Buddhika’s rise over the years. A brilliant man with a “both parents teachers” bckground, he has significant grass root connections.
In 206, Buddhika secured the only Pradeeshiya Sabha victory for the UNP in the South.
Buddhika has travelled the world widely participating in a number of political and cademic traing and seiminars and workshops and has gained exposure to the international political scene.
In Sri Lanka, he has work closely with a range of community and media organisations. His thrust towards community development and sincerity towards the elctorate earned him the highest votes in the recent parliamentary election.
Buddhika has the potential to become Sri Lanka’s Obama and I beseech the elders in the UNP to recognise this potential and to provide him opportunity to bring glory not only to the UNP but to the country as a whole.