Internal political sources inform that although President Maithreepala Sirisena dissolved the Parliament, the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) is in a struggle to contest in the upcoming General Election.
Almost all public representatives, trade unions and subsidiaries of the Sri Lanka People’s Front (SLPF) have recommended the party and Mr. Mahinda Rajapakshe to contest in the General Election separately. As of yesterday, a group of young members with Namal Rajapakshe had decided to leave the SLFP and join the SLPF.
Even today, advisor of the SLFP former President Mahinda Rajapakshe with a group of members took membership of the SLPF a while ago.
Discussions were carried out that the party should be contesting from the Pohottuwa symbol led by Mr. Mahinda Rajapakshe, since the party had become famous among people during recent political events, as well as in keeping with the triumph the party had won over the previous Local Government Election. In addition, sources close to the founder of SLPF, Mr. Basil Rajapakshe, informed that the SLFP tends to ally with the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) in order to face the General Election.
Secretary of SLPF Attorney Sagara Kariyawasam in regard to these concerns recently said that their party would contest in all upcoming elections under the Pohottuwa symbol, while the rest is welcome to ally with them.
In response to these comments, General Secretary of SLFP Prof. Rohana Lakshman Piyadasa said that they would be contesting in the elections under the UPFA.
However, as of now, ground-scale initiatives of the SLPF towards the elections have already been commenced.
But a group of members from the SLFP has expressed their objection to the suggestion. A group consisting front leaders, such as Duminda Dissanayake, Mahinda Amaraweera, Vijith Wijayamuni Soysa, A.H.M. Fausi, Lasantha Alagiyawanne, Piyasena Gamage and Ranjith Siyambalapitiya, who happened to stand in establishing the Yahapalana Government and after, has informed the President regarding these concerns.
They have informed the President that if they contest together with the SLPF, there is a likeliness to have them sacked out of the political movement compared to the amount of criticism pointed at the Rajapakshes during recent times.
Therefore, under the influence of the President Mr. Basil Rajapakshe has personally met with the above members and ministers yesterday (10) in regard to contesting at the elections, and confirmed that their future will not be threatened.
However, it is said that the SLFP group has not yet expressed their decision, while many happen to blame the President; especially after he promised not to dissolve the Parliament in the meeting held in All Ceylon Committee or Central Committee on last 08 and took measures to behave otherwise on 09.
Many among SLFP members have refused to contest for elections from the Pohottuwa symbol.
Accordingly, the SLFP group sided with the President has met with a difficult situation, while having a say that they would have to take various precautions in protecting their political future.
It was also reported that a special discussion on the current situation will be held between the President and the leaders of the SLFP today (11).