'JVP Has Turned Into A Company': Nandana Gunathilake

Former JVP stalwart Nandana Gunathilake stated that the JVP has now become a 'company' geared towards providing livelihoods for some of its leaders, rather than a political party.

Speaking to Asian Mirror on the resignation of Somawansa Amarasinghe from the party, Gunathilake said that it could be the result of a long running dispute which the JVP has not been able to resolve.

Explaining further, he said that the dispute first surfaced during the 2005 Presidential Election. JVP Politburo had decided that the party should conditionally support Mahinda Rajapaksa and enter the government by accepting ministerial portfolios. By working effectively and efficiently within the Cabinet, the party could have won many people over to its side and could have aimed to become a broader political party.

He added that the then leader Somawansa Amarasinghe, who was initially skeptical of this strategy, later accepted it. However, only seven out of 25 members of the Central Committee agreed to it and therefore the party did not accept the strategy.

Gunathilake further stated that he left the party as a result of this dispute. Later, a group led by Wimal Weerawansa also left the party on a similar dispute, he added.

Although Amarasinghe announced that he is leaving the JVP on his own, Gunathilake expressed the belief that he has a considerable number of supporters within the party.

Gunathilake also said that several years after he had left, it became apparent that the party had turned into a ‘company.’ He added that certain dealings of the JVP and its connections with certain businessmen were not secrets in the political world. However, the rank and file members of the party are still reluctant to accept this fact, he said.

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