Maithripala's "Reasons" To Leave the Govt: CBK Was The "Chief Architect" Behind The Scene

Former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, who was prevented from contesting at the upcoming presidential election by her close associates due to legal impediments, was the chief architect of the entire process behind making SLFP General Secretary Maithripala Sirisena the common candidate of the opposition.

The Minister was livid at the government for two main reasons. One was the incident where his son, Daham Sirisena, was drawn into a brawl with the son of a senior Police officer, last year. Several newspapers - particularly the pro-government ones - reported the story saying the Minister's had threatened the senior Police officer's son claiming he was the son of the future Prime Minister. 

The Minister repeatedly assured that no such claim was made by his son and it was completely a cooked up story to serve the interests of some. The Minister was of the strong belief that the story was 'planted' by clandestine 'media bosses' of the government, under the instructions of some top echelons who wanted to see Minister Sirisena's downfall! 

Addressing media at his residence last year, Sirisena said there was a conspiracy to "destroy" his political career and he was aware of the people who are behind such plans. It was crystal clear that the attack was directed at certain "top powers" of the UPFA government. 

At the same time, Maithripala was disappointed with the fact that the position of Prime Minister was not offered to him at the last Cabinet reshuffle, despite widespread speculations. Although several grassroots level organizations affiliated with the ruling party urged the President to appoint Maithripala as the Prime Minister of the UPFA government they did not elicit positive response from the top. Maithripala was disheartened by the fact that there was a sense of distrust developing between him and certain 'top powers' of the government. 

Maithripala was offered the PM position of the UPFA government on Wednesday evening in the wake of the claims that he might leave the government. But he raised suspicions over the bona fides of the move and refused to accept the position citing "personal reasons". 

When Maithripala addressed a SLFP affiliated trade union meeting in Polonnaruwa, he had been approached by CBK to be the common candidate of the opposition. The controversial remarks he made over the assassination of S.W.R.D Bandaranaike and the 'power of Polonnaruwa' was directed at those who exerted pressure on him to remain with the government. The highlight of his his speech was the manner in which he appreciated former President Kumaratunga -  a taboo subject for many a ruling party MP after 2005. 

As of now, Maithripala stands a strong chance to be the common candidate of the opposition with the support of the main opposition party, the UNP. It is reported that even the staunchest of supporters of UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe are now backing Maithripala's candidature. 

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