Maithri determined to complete his term come what may
Posted on August 30th, 2017

By Shamindra Ferdinando Courtesy The Island

President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday declared that whatever the challenges, he was confident of completing his full five-year term.

The President who is also the leader of the SLFP stressed that he was in control in spite of various statements attributed to various political party spokesmen.

Addressing state and privately-owned media at the Presidential Secretariat President Sirisena dismissed recent speculative reports regarding the stability and future of the ‘unity’ government. The President called the media, on the eve of the SLFP’s 66th anniversary to explain measures taken by the new leadership to strengthen the party.

Referring to a recent report regarding the UNP to quit the government in January 2018 attributed to a senior UNP party spokesman, President Sirisena said that in such an eventuality, he would continue with his mandate. A smiling President said that he would continue with those willing to join the administration.

Responding to a media query, President Sirisena explained that the UNP had secured 106 seats plus one SLMC (SLMC contested on the UNP ticket as well as on its own) whereas the UPFA obtained 95 at the last parliamentary polls in Aug 2015. President explained how ‘unity’ government had come into being in the wake of growing challenges faced by the country due to actions of the previous Rajapaksa administration.

Asked whether the SLFP had decided on extending the agreement between the UNP and the SLFP in Dec 2017, President Sirisena said that the issue would be addressed at the appropriate time. President Sirisena said that there was no issue about it.

President Sirisena also confirmed that he had recently received a letter from Petroleum Resources Minister and former national cricket Captain Arjuna Ranatunga regarding the crisis in the national cricket team.

Ranatunga flayed Cricket Board President Thilanga Sumathipala, who is also the Deputy Speaker over recent humiliating debacles. Turning towards National List MP Sumathipala, President said that he would talk to the Cricket Board Chief. “I would have to get an appointment from him,” a smiling President said.

Ranatunga has urged President Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to appoint an interim committee to run the game.

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