President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday dismissed the notion that he was afraid of Sajith Premadasa becoming leader of the main Opposition UNP as a “joke.”
In response to a poser by an editor yesterday prior to breakfast with print and electronic media heads at Temple Trees that Rajapaksa was afraid of UNP leadership going to Premadasa, the President laughingly said “You must be joking.”
President Rajapaksa on Thursday wished Ranil Wickremesinghe on his 62nd birthday as well as for being reaffirmed as the leader of the UNP whilst Sajith Premadasa was appointed as a Deputy Leader along with Karu Jayasuriya. The President also had a witty remark saying it was a “big achievement” for Wickremesinghe to remain as the leader of the UNP for 17 years.
“It is good for a country to have an experienced Leader of the Opposition,” Rajapaksa said adding “It is good for democracy in a country to have an undivided opposition.”
He added that both the country and the government could benefit through the experience of a good Leader of the Opposition.