“Tissa Attanayake Ruined UNP And Created Further Divisions”: Malik Samarawickrama

November 14, 2014

Formar Chairman of the United National Party and a close ally of the UNP Leader, Malik Wickremesinghe has accused Tissa Attanayake, General Secretary of the party, of ruining the party structure by his disastrous moves and creating further divisions among its top level members.

Attanayake was the one who devised the so called “peace pact” between UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and its newly appointed Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa which came as a surprise to many. However, Samarawickrama, a longstanding member of the main opposition party, is of the view that Atttanayake’s intervention has now created newer and newer problems in the party.

Although Premadasa was appointed as the Deputy Leader of the UNP, under Attanayake’s instructions, the former never distanced himself from his personal agenda and acted as if he had an axe to grind with certain top level officials of the party. He also attempted his best to disrupt the ongoing efforts to field a common candidate and to consolidate the party’s leader’s position as the UNP’s “presidential hopeful”. It was Premadasa himself who kept saying that Wickremesinghe was not capable of winning an election of any scale!

However, with the large majority of the UNP Parliamentarians and Working Committee members working towards fielding a common candidate, Premadasa now finds himself in an isolated position. He is left alone with a handful of Parliamentarians and provincial councilors who are die-hard Premadasa fans. So the persistent problem, after going rounds and rounds, came back to square one!

It is in this context that Samarawicrama lashes out at Attanayake’s conduct as the General Secretary of the party saying he created further divisions in the UNP camp.

What needs to be highlighted here is the fact that Samarawickrama is closer to Wickremesinghe than to anyone else in the Green camp. Also, he was one of the people who strictly backed the idea that former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga should be the presidential candidate supported by the United National Party. This criticism is suggestive of the fact that even Wickremesinghe’s closest allies have started firing cannon balls at the General Secretary of the party.

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