Sep 04, 2019

Sajith dodges UNP election organisation? Featured

Prior to the presidential election the Elpitiya Pradeshiya Sabha election is scheduled to be held and although Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe wanted to hand over the election operations to Sajith Premadasa, his advisors have adviced him not to take on the task.

The party seniors are of the view that the Elpitiya election prior to the presidential election is an important factor.

Previously, the UNP initiated their winning streak after the then MP Harin Fernando resigned from his seat and contesting the Uva elections and winning.

He succeeded in winning 173,993 votes for the UNP at the 2014 September Uva Provincial Council elections.

The UNP obtained 197,708 votes from the Badulla district adding to the total won by Harin Fernando to over 88% of the preferential votes.

1988 in Ratnapura

It is said that Premadasa is refusing the organising of this election citing the 1988 Ratnapura by-election results.

Although the then President J.R. Jayawardena had wanted to test the political waters through the July 14, 1988 election, due to the JVP insurgency and other factors, the UNP lost the election.

During that election campaign, Anura Bandaranaike had resided in that area to conduct the election operations.

The UNP had fielded Susantha Punchinilame while the SLFP had fielded Nanda Ellawala.

However, Nanda won the election by obtaining 31,854 votes, while his rival Punchinilame won only 27,069 votes.

While political analysts were of the view that the UNP would lose the next election, they changed their stance and nominated Ranasinghe Premadasa as their presidential candidate and won the election making Premadasa the 2nd Executive President.

Citing these reasons Sajith wants to side-step the election operations in Elpitiya, but his supporters are of the view that gaining the power to conduct the election operations is in itself a victory for the Sajith faction.