Parliamentarian Mahinda Rajapaksa is responsible for splitting the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), Social Empowerment Welfare and Kandyan Heritage Minister S. B. Dissanayake said.
He added that Rajapaksa together with Basil Rajapaksa and Namal Rajapaksa crippled the talks between the SLFP and the Joint Opposition with the intention to bring his family members to power by 2025.
These three persons obstructed the path to come to a favourable settlement following talks.
Minister Dissanayake said so while addressing the media at the Ministry at Battaramulla, yesterday.
The Minister said that several rounds of formal and informal discussions, including four rounds of formal talks were held between the two parties but Rajapaksa did not come to a settlement. Therefore, he should be responsible for splitting the SLFP for narrow political gains.
“Meanwhile, Basil Rajapaksa hesitated to come to a settlement considering his security while Mahinda Rajapaksa wanted to centralise power with his family by 2025,” he said.
However, the Minister said the SLFP is gradually strengthening day by day. Many politicians would come forward to strengthen the SLFP to confirm a clean victory at the forthcoming Local Government elections.
He added that a considerable number of political parties had expressed their willingness to join the SLFP, aiming to create a broad alliance to face the next election.
Accordingly, several minor political parties including Thondaman’s and Athaulla’s parties will contest with the SLFP at the next election as abroad alliance.
“The SLFP will contest the next LG election under the hand symbol in certain areas, while in other areas, it will contest under the Betel symbol. In the Eastern part, the symbol may change,” he said.
He added that unless President Maithripala Sirisena did not form this unity government, 11 Parliamentarians currently in the JO had discussed with the UNP to form a UNP government.
“Now they demanded to quit the government,” he said.
According to Dissanayake, there is no doubt about the SLFP’s victory at the forthcoming LG election. The SLFP will sweep the board, he said. He added that there was a huge demand for SLFP nominations to contest at the next election.
When asked whether the NFF and JO members, who joined the SLFP, have demanded anything when joining, the Minister said they joined the SLFP only with the intention of strengthening the hands of President Sirisena.