Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan addressing a star-studded line up of politicians, including Chandrika Kumartunga, Mahinda Rajapaksa and Ranil Wickremesinghe noted that the country’s politicians always should give priority to “Democracy”.
The Tamil National Alliance leader, who has been in the limelight lately said the erosion of democracy will lead to the destruction of the country.
“Sri Lanka should always be a vibrant democracy. We cannot let the country be destroyed. So we should strengthen our democratic institutions and protect democracy as a whole” Sampanthan said.
He made these observation while speaking at the 60th Anniversary Celebrations of the Department of Elections held at the BMICH yesterday.
The event was a rare one in the sens it drew some of Sri Lanka’s key political leaders who have been at loggerheads more often than not.
Former President’s Chandrika Kumartunga, Mahinda Rajapaksa, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, R. Sampanthan along with the Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya occupied the front row.
“Although Ranil and Mahinda were seen to be chatting together for the most part of the event Chandrika remained silent and even avoided eye contact with her declared enemy Rajapaksa. Fortunately it was Wickremesinghe who was seated next to Rajapaksa followed by Kumaratunga.” an observer told Colombo Telegraph.
Sampanthan went on to say that the Department of Elections should at all times fully honour its commitments in ensuring free and fair elections.
The brooding faces of his front row colleagues showed that they were not impressed by Sampanthan’s sober comments.
Sampanthan undeterred went on to say that although there had been some issues from time to time with regards to election malpractices the Elections Department has conducted its duties in a commendable manner.