SLFP to support GR but with conditions

Thursday, 10 October 2019 02:39 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


  • Says backing GR will not damage SLFP’s identity 
  • SLFP and SLPP to contest Parliamentary Elections under alliance with chair symbol


By Nuwan Senarathna 

Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) yesterday said the party would conditionally support the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna’s (SLPP) presidential candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa and said they would sign two agreements with the SLPP in the coming days. 

Speaking to media at the SLPP Head Office, Senior Deputy Chairman Nimal Siripala de Silva said the SLFP would organise a separate campaign to promote Gotabaya Rajapaksa ahead of the Presidential Election.  

“Our decision to support Rajapaksa was a decision taken after lengthy discussions. It was not a decision taken by one person. This decision will not affect the future of the party. We are only supporting the SLPP candidate, that does not mean it will affect the party’s identity,” de Silva said.

He noted while protecting SLFP’s identity during the upcoming election, the SLFP would sign an agreement with Rajapaksa and a separate agreement with the SLPP. According to de Silva, the decision to back Rajapaksa was the people’s decision. “We will contest the upcoming Parliamentary Election as an alliance. 

The name of the alliance will be Sri Lanka Nidahas Podujana Alliance and the symbol will be the chair. We have agreed on how we are going to contest the upcoming elections.”

According to de Silva, the SLFP and SLPP had agreed on areas such as national security, protecting Buddhism, safeguarding rights of minorities and promoting reconciliation. He noted the agreement would also consist of upholding law and order, prevention of drugs. “We have agreed to confine the Cabinet to 30 members and divide ministries according to a scientific system. 

The agreement will only be signed once these policies are agreed on. I hope we will be able to guide the country to prosperity.” Meanwhile, SLFP General Secretary Dayasiri Jayasekara said the decision to support Rajapaksa had not betrayed the party’s policies. He said all likeminded parties will back Rajapaksa to defeat the United National Party’s (UNP) presidential candidate. He noted Rajapaksa’s policies were aligned with the SLFP policies, which in his view, supported a political alliance.

Pic by Lasantha Kumara