Cold war’ still on between PM, Sajith
Posted on September 29th, 2019

By W.K. Prasad Manju Courtesy Ceylon Today

The cold war between the UNP Leader, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Deputy Leader, Minister Sajith Premadasa, still prevails even though the latter was named the Presidential candidate on Thursday (26).

Friction between the two has escalated as several conditions had been put forward, by the faction supporting the PM to Premadasa, in order for the latter to be the Party’s Presidential candidate. The conditions include bringing in a new Constitution, devolution of power, abolition of the Executive Presidency, giving Party Leadership to Wickremesinghe until 2024 and offering the Prime Minister post to him if the Party wins the General Election planned for next year.

It is also reported that another bone of contention was the symbol under which their candidate will contest the upcoming election.

A heated debate had taken place between Wickremesinghe and former Minister Imthiaz Bakeer Markar regarding the devolution of power, sources say.

It is also expected that a debate will take place regarding these matters at the next UNP convention to be held on 3 October where these proposals will be discussed.

While Wickremesinghe had proposed the ‘telephone’ as the election symbol for Premadasa, who will contest as the DUNF candidate, Premadasa had stated that the ‘swan’ was more suitable as it was more familiar to the people having been used as the symbol during the last two Presidential Elections.

Though a committee led by Minister Ranjith Madduma Bandara has been appointed to solve the issue, their efforts have been unsuccessful and the committee has therefore informed Wickremesinghe and Premadasa to meet and take a decision regarding the symbol.

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