Sunday, September 24, 2023

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Ranawaka nominated to post of Finance Minister of proposed ‘National Consensus Government’?

MP Patali Champika Ranawaka has been nominated to the post of Finance Minister of the proposed ‘National Consensus Government’ to be jointly formed by the independent MP group, the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) and a faction of the Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) upon Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’s resignation, internal sources disclosed.

Ranawaka was elected to Parliament from the 2020 General Election via the SJB but did not take its membership. He instead left his old political party Jathika Hela Urumaya and formed a new political force, the 43rd Brigade (Hathalis Thun Weni Senankaya), stemming a risk of collapse in the SJB over the preceding two years.

His latest position in the political saga could be driving this internal crisis into its bottle neck, sources claimed.

In the backdrop where Leader of the Opposition Sajith Premadasa completely dismisses the belief that an interim government should be formed, activists loyal to the 43rd Brigade are of the view that an interim government should be formed to make the country politically stable and to battle the prevailing economic crisis. These activists have recently made this claim on their Social Media channels as well.

Some of the most powerful figures of the 43rd Brigade have recently been seen displaying tendency to publicly criticise Premadasa and make fun of him.

Contradictory to the mutually understood belief by the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) and the SJB that an election should be called in instead of an interim government, Ranawaka recently told media that the holding of an election at this moment should not be necessary in the event that it could distort the public’s opinion.

Ranawaka also did not attend the May Day Rally organised by the SJB and instead attended a separate May Day Rally organised by the 43rd Brigade.

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