By Shamindra Ferdinando
A group led by Cabinet ministers Vasudeva Nanayakkara, Wimal Weerawansa and Udaya Gammanpila campaigning against the Yugadanavi deal is holding a public meeting today (14) at Eheliyagoda to step up pressure on the government to scrap the questionable deal.
The group launched its campaign on 29 October at the Solis Hall, Pita Kotte, where it vowed to oppose the agreement detrimental to the country. The SLFP, the second largest party in the government parliamentary group with 14 members, would be represented by its General Secretary Dayasiri Jayasekera, organisers of today’s event said.
Besides the three ministers and the SLFP General Secretary, six other lawmakers, namely Ven. Athureliye Rathana Thera, Prof. Tissa Vitharana, Tiran Alles, A. L. M. Athaulla, Asanga Navaratne and Gevindu Cumaratunga are scheduled to join the Eheliyagoda meeting at Suwinera Hall at 3 pm.
The Communist Party would be represented by its General Secretary Dr. G. Weerasinghe, organisers said, adding that altogether the group campaigning against Yugadanavi comprised over 25 lawmakers.
The focus of the high-profile campaign is on the Yugadanavi deal and the rising cost of living.
In spite of repeated SLPP warnings the group has refused to abandon its campaign.
Minister Udaya Gammanpila told The Island that they couldn’t keep quiet against the backdrop of an utterly corrupt agreement between Sri Lanka and the New York based New Fortress Energy Company. Attorney-at-law Gammanpila appreciated the media coverage received by those campaigning against the agreement finalized on Sept 17, 2021.
Minister Gammanpila asserted that no one could impede their protest campaign both in and outside Parliament.
The Eheliyagoda meeting would be the first major public gathering since JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake tabled a copy of the Yugadanavi agreement in Parliament last Friday (10).
Pointing out that those who had been campaigning against Yugadanavi voted for the SLPP Budget 2022, the main Opposition SJB and the JVP yesterday reiterated that at least the ministers should quit the cabinet without further delay.