Party unity key focus this year - Dayasiri | Daily News

Party unity key focus this year - Dayasiri

Parliamentarian Dayasiri Jayasekara assumed duties as new Sri Lanka Freedom Party General Secretary yesterday at the SLFP Headquarters yesterday. Party Chairman, President Maithripala Sirisena visited the SLFP Headquarters last morning to congratulate the new Secretary General. During this event, the President presented the letter of appointment to Jayasekara. Parliamentarians Nimal Siripala de Silva, Mahinda Amaraweera, Duminda Dissanayake, Mahinda Samarasinghe were present. Picture by Wimal Karunathilake
Parliamentarian Dayasiri Jayasekara assumed duties as new Sri Lanka Freedom Party General Secretary yesterday at the SLFP Headquarters yesterday. Party Chairman, President Maithripala Sirisena visited the SLFP Headquarters last morning to congratulate the

Party unity, discipline, ideology and strengthening the grassroots will be the key focus this election year, said recently appointed acting SLFP General Secretary, Dayasiri Jayasekara addressing his maiden press conference having assumed office yesterday.

Together with other SLFP MPs Nimal Siripala de Silva, Thilanga Sumathipala and former SLFP General Secretary, Prof.Rohana Lakshman Piyadasa, Jayasekara asked that all SLFPers who have left to join the SLPP return, to build a stronger and more unified coalition at the upcoming provincial and parliamentary elections.

With this year and the next being crucial election years with Provincial Council elections, Presidential and Parliamentary elections due, the new General Secretary faces a massive challenge of rebuilding the party which only managed to win 13 percent of the vote at the last Local Government elections.

The SLFP which has mainly contested under coalitions, is once again in talks to form a wider coalition with all leftist parties to contest all upcoming elections, “It will not be an easy task but it has to be done”, said de Silva addressing the briefing at SLFP Headquarters at Darley Road.

The consensus is that they would name incumbent President Maithripala Sirisena as the common candidate under this new alliance at the next Presidential elections in 2020.

“We don’t see any other alternative than President Maithripala Sirisena to face the UNP opposition at a Presidential election,” Sumathipala said. The General Secretary speaking of his challenges said they would have to work hard to bring the party together and resolve all internal issues, “There are those who have varying opinions, but we are ready to come together and discuss any issues,” he said. Closing the door to any partnerships with the UNP, Jayasekara also stressed the importance of sticking to the ideology of the SLFP, “We need to know where we stand. We are a left of centre party and cannot work with capitalists”. Jayasekara whose role would also involve intensive restructuring of the party this year stressed that the SLFP would not be a party of extremists, “Though we have a strong Sinhala Buddhist party, our party is for all Sri Lankans and Muslims and Tamils must be invited more into our fold as in the past. We will not tolerate extremists to protect the party,” he said. The 49-year-old General Secretary also promised to work from the grassroots and build the base that has eroded in the last few years.

“Those those who have toiled for the party for years without benefit will now be given a place. And youth will be given more prominence, we need them if the party is to survive into the future,” he added. Amidst criticism that the post of General Secretary should not have gone to Jayasekara who left the party to join the UNP at one time, he said that his wish had always been to progress within the SLFP but due to various disagreements between then leader, Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, he had to leave. He however added that at present he had no issue with the former President.

“Experience has shown me what happens to those who leave the party, I will not leave. Further, it must be made clear that all those who stand with the party, must also support the leader,” Jayasekara said.

 


Visit Kapruka.com Sri Lanka's Largest online shop. Over 125,000 unique categories such as Fresh Flowers, Cakes, Food, Jewllery, Childrens Toys and other Sri Lankan e-commerce categories. Low delivery cost to most cities here and free delivery in Colombo.

 

Add new comment