The All Ceylon Makkal Congress (ACMC) led by Rishard Bathiudeen will field candidates in seven districts on the UNP while contesting under its own symbol in the Ampara District, ACMC general Secretary, Y.L.S. Hameed said.
The ACMC will collaborate with the UNP in Batticaloa, Trincomalee, Wanni, Anuradhapura, Kurunegala and Puttalam Districts, he added.
“A total of 25 candidates will contest from the ACMC. The highest number 10 will be in Ampara,”Hameed said.
The ACMC has been working for the welfare of the Muslims whose political issues have been relegated to the political backburner for long, particularly with regard to resettlement needs and livelihood support, he said.
The ACMC Secretary General also noted that the entry of BBS into mainstream politics will prove a challenge to ethnic integration in the country, post war, as said, the impact of such parties should be minimised.
“The people of this country are educated and intelligent. They will not be misled by communal elements. The BBS is trying to sow communalism in the minds of the Sinhala people but the political culture that prevails today is very different, that such attempts will not prove successful,” he said.
ACMC wants to fulfill the aspirations of all communities without any discrimination. It will work towards creating ethnic harmony which is why the All Ceylon Muslim Congress has been re-branded as All Ceylon Makkal Congress, Hameed explained.
“We need to create a peaceful country and for this, we must elect people who represent our ideology. The new coalition with the UNP will ensure a better political culture and that ethnicity will not be used against communities or confer privileged status on some. Those divisive politics will come to an end on August 17,” he said.
The ACMC in a short time has managed to propose alternative solutions to a number of problems and have addressed several issues faced by Muslims in particular due to increasing communalism, fuelled by the former regime, he noted.
The ACMC, he added, will propose several welfare and developmental measures to the new government to ensure that the country moves forward.