SLPP run by ex-military group – PM …warns journalists backing SLPP digging their own grave
by Shamindra Ferdinando
Alleging that there were no new faces in the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) except for a group of retired military officers, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe warned a section of the media of dire consequences in case the new outfit won power.
PM Wickremesinghe said so addressing a gathering at ‘Sirikotha’ after Minister Navin Dissanayake received his appointment as the National Organizer of the UNP.
Wickremesinghe said that the UNP had a young democratic leadership whereas ex-military group dominated the SLPP. Would they protect democracy? What were they doing? The Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickrematunga was assassinated in January 2009. Media personality Pradeep Ekneligoda disappeared on the eve of January 2010 presidential polls.
A Sirikotha statement quoted PM Wickremesinghe as having said: “Let me tell you one thing. Those journalists who now represented the SLPP interests will be made to disappear by the same people. That is their strategy. There is no need for me to remind you again. They are digging their own grave. The media will not report this. Television stations, too, will not carry this. There is no problem. UNPers should keep in mind. Our objective is to prevent military rule again.”
The UNP leader alleged that an attempt was being made to establish Rajapaksa regime II.
Wickremesinghe said that the country should decide whether it wanted democracy or military rule.
Wishing new office bearers good luck, Wickremesinghe said that the youth had been given the responsibility to spearhead the UNP.
Wickremesinghe alleged that those Joint Opposition MPs in parliament lacked power to take decisions. Those MPs had been turned into puppets and were dominated by ex-military officers now running the show.
The UNP leader explained how the ex-military had taken control of the parliamentary group loyal to former President Mahinda Rajapaksa and now calling the shots. Wickremesinghe said that those MPs causing scenes in parliament deprived others of the opportunity to take decisions on behalf of their party.
Wickremesinghe paid a glowing tribute to Dissanayake while expressing the belief the late Gamini Dissanayake’s son could play a major role in revamping the party.
Wickremesinghe said that a set of committed politicians had been given the challenging task of taking the party forward.
The Premier expressed the belief that the reorganization of the party could be achieved.
He also recalled the services rendered by late Gamini Dissanayake and the circumstances under which he was killed in Oct 1994 during the presidential polls campaign.