A major strain in the relations between the United National Party (UNP) and President Maithripala Sirisena started to show yesterday when Uva Chief Minister Harin Fernando expressed doubts about the
President’s bona fides and accused him of harbouring ‘secret political agendas’.
Addressing a press briefing held at Sirikotha, Fernando asserted that UNP had obtained information about secret meetings held between President Sirisena and former President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
“President Sirisena and former President Rajapaksa said that once they met in Speaker’s house. However we believe that they have met in another secret place. Therefore the UNP has doubts about President Sirisena’s behaviour. If he did that, he should be ashamed of himself,” Fernando claimed.
Commenting further he alleged that if President Sirisena was trying to promote the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) for the upcoming election, UNP members would be deeply disappointed.
“UNP brought out President Sirisena as its common candidate, and we all put our efforts to make him President. SLFP leaders or members were not there. They were backing former President Rajapaksa. However President Sirisena wants to strengthen his party, not the UNP. We believe it is very unfair,” Fernando assumed.
He charged that President Sirisena ought to remember those who supported him to win the presidency.
“Millions of Sri Lankans placed their trust in President Sirisena and they wanted to defeat former President Rajapaksa. President Sirisena should respect those people and ignore those who were so opposed to him during the presidential election,” Fernando said.
Fernando went on to allege that some conspirators backing former President Rajapaksa are trying to pave the way for his political comeback using President Sirisena.
“Rajapaksa and his supporters want power again and they are using President Sirisena for that. However if they win, they will definitely take revenge from President Sirisena himself,” Fernando stated.
Commenting on the UNP’s preparations for the upcoming election, Fernando stated that UNP will definitely gain 115 MP seats in the Parliament.
“We are conducting our election campaigns all over the country and large crowds gather around us. That is because we have a decent leader who has not been corrupt throughout his past political career. The voters will always trust the UNP,” Fernando enthused.