JHU in limbo after dissolution
The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) is now in a dilemma on how it should contest the forthcoming Parliamentary election.
Although the party had a plan to align itself with the SLFP after the passage of the 20th Amendment, the dissolution of Parliament has plunged the party into a fresh problem, informed political sources told the Daily News. With the warring factions within the SLFP negotiating to arrive at an agreement to contest together at the election, the JHU, a minor stakeholder of President Maithripala Sirisena’s government, has now been left out of the equation.
As a way out of the present crisis, the JHU has decided to issue a policy document that comes as an extension of President Sirisena’s election manifesto at the January election. The JHU, at the Parliamentary election, will extend its support to any political party that is willing to accept its policy document. Speaking to the Daily News, JHU General Secretary Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka said that the the programme will reflect JHU’s expectations for the country.
It will also decide the party’s future course of action with regards to the upcoming general elections.
Ranwaka said that the party was yet to decide on how it will contest the upcoming polls, within a coalition or as a single party.
However, Ranawaka insisted that the the JHU will not support any decision or programme of action which distorts the mandate of the public, which ensured victory for President Maithripala Sirisena at January 8, polls.
When queried on the the JHU’s stance on giving nominations to former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to contest the upcoming polls under the UPFA banner, Ranawaka said that it was a decision for the SLFP to make.
When queried whether the JHU will remain within the UPFA fold if such a decision is taken, Ranawaka said that it was too early to comment as such a decision has not been arrived at by the SLFP.
Ranawaka said that his party is currently in the process of making an assessment of the political situation in the country and would make the correct decision with regards to its future course of action soon.
The minister however reiterated that whatever the party does, it will be in line with the expectations of the people and the mandate given by the public on January 8.
The JHU which was a partner of the UPFA government under former President Rajapaksa decided to support Maithripala Sirisena when he broke ranks with Rajapaksa and came forward as the common candidate at the last Presidential polls.
The party hierarchy since then have been strong critics of former President Rajapaksa.The party played an influential role in the ensuing election campaign which brought victory to President Sirisena.
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