Sajith asked to take leadership of new UNP-led coalition | Daily News


UNP drifting rudderless over leadership issue

Sajith asked to take leadership of new UNP-led coalition

Less than two months away from the expected announcement of a General Election, the United National Party in a swamp over choosing its own leadership, is now poised to cut a path between its current leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa by forming new UNP-led political alliance of which Premadasa would be the appointed leader.

Accordingly, Sajith Premadasa will be the leader of the new coalition that will be established under the United National Party (UNP) while Wickremesinghe will remain the leader of the United National Party as its stronghold, UNP sources told the Daily News yesterday.

On the contrary, Premadasa, who stepped down from his position as UNP’s Deputy Leader after his defeat at the last Presidential Election, is now under pressure to return to the same position as a Deputy Leader.

Commenting on the situation yesterday UNP MP Nalin Bandara Jayamaha said they were exploring possibilities under Sajith Premadasa’s leadership to form a new political coalition.

Asked if Premadasa had taken back his party’s deputy leader position, UNP MP Nalin Bandara Jayamaha said, “as it now stands, that post has been offered to him by UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe.”

Premadasa was also asked to take over the leadership of the new political alliance to be formed under the UNP, he said.

Wickremesinghe’s decision came after he was urged at the recent meeting of the UNP Parliamentary Group by a large group within the UNP Parliamentary group to appoint Premadasa as the UNP leader, UNP sources said.

At least the feeling of the UNP supporters that the party is drifting rudderless over the issue of its leadership could be calmed should this decision were to be implemented, the sources said.

They said that Wickremesinghe plans to appoint key members to the party’s Working Committee by the following Monday. They will be appointed by a committee headed by Wickremesinghe, which will comprise UNP Secretary General MP Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, Deputy Leader Ravi Karunanayake, Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa and National Organizer Navin Dissanayaka among others.

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