Sri Lanka President asks main opposition UNP to unite

Dec 22, Colombo: Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa asked the main opposition United National Party (UNP) to unite and form a strong opposition for the country.

Addressing Parliament yesterday evening, the President said the opposition was currently weak.

He called on UNPers to accept the constitutionally appointed party leader and unite. The President also said the UNP should get closer to the people and work towards the benefit of the country rather than working “to please the international community”.

He has said that instead of holding signs and protesting against the budget, the UNP could help by making alternative proposals for the government to consider. Meanwhile, Prime Minister D.M. Jayaratne vowed to protect the UNP Leader and its party headquarters at Sirikotha, which was recently attacked.

Referring to comments made by UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe that his life and party were under threat, the Premier said the government would help the party.

Mr. Jayaratne said the UNP headquarters would be protected after the required renovations and money will be allocated from the Presidential Fund to assist the wounded.

“Let’s protect the UNP,” Jayaratne said.

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