Ranil Wants CBK To Be UNP Presidential Candidate!

6cd62aa456e2fd63bb6f44b13fb981c8_LAsian Mirror is now in a position to reveal that UNP Leader Ranil Wickremasinghe is behind Malik Samarawickrama’s move to field former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga as the presidential candidate of the main opposition party.

Malik Samarawickrama is a former Chairman of the UNP and a close ally of UNP Leader Wickremasinghe. It has now come to the limelight that Samarawickrama is acting as the party leader’s proxy in this fresh operation.

Wickremasinghe – who was Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga’s main opponent at the presidential election in 1999 – has now embarked on a mission to field the former President as the presidential candidate backed by the UNP.

On the surface, it looks like a move to console UNP Matara District Parliamentarian Mangala Samaraweera who was negotiating with the government for a crossover. However, Wickremesinghe’s attempt has come in a context where the majority of UNP Parliamentarians believe that Karu Jayasuriya should be named as the presidential candidate of the party.

The party leader’s move to appoint CBK as the presidential candidate of the party has been greeted with mixed reactions by the rank and file of the party. A sizable proportion of the party’s Parliamentarians and Working Committee members are of the belief that the former President’s candidature is likely to boomerang on the party at the election.

The former President has still not given her consent to be the presidential candidate of the main opposition party. But, she has pledged to play an active role in the UNP’s election campaign for the forthcoming presidential polls.

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