UNP and JO in ‘secret deal’ to tarnish SLFP – Dayasiri

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By 2017-11-18

While noting that they are only bound by the agreement between the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the United National Party (UNP) to form a consensus Government, Minister of Sports Dayasiri Jayasekara yesterday (17), in Parliament dropped a minor bombshell by alleging that there is an underhand deal between the UNP and the Joint Opposition (JO), to sling mud at the SLFP.

Minister Jayasekera was explaining the situation that has cropped up following a statement made by JO MP Kanchana Wijesekera demanding to know from the Government as to who was behind the case filed on 16 November before the Supreme Court in connection with the Local Government elections.

Minister Jayasekera: MP Wijesekera has stated that I had a connection with those who filed the case. One of the persons who......signed the petition for this case is from the Panduwasnuwara electorate of which I am the organizer. I accepted the Panduwasnuwara electorate four and a half months back. He is not a person who did politics with me. He is connected to a former Deputy Minister. I was told that he signed the petition for the case at the behest of that former Deputy Minister. He had been asked by the former Deputy Minister to sign the petition. I have never spoken in a case related to the Provincial Councils elections. I never instructed anyone to file a case. There is no connection of the SLFP to this. Neither the President nor anyone here in the SLFP has anything to do with this. We do not enter into secret deals with the UNP. When a UNP member was speaking, a JO member obtained four minutes from the former's time to sling mud at the SLFP. The JO has entered into a deal with the UNP to sling mud at the SLFP.

Chief Government Whip, Minister Gayantha Karunathilaka: None of the UNP members gave any of their allocated time to the Opposition MPs.

Minister Jayasekera: The Chief Whip may say so, but Minister Ajith P. Perera gave his time. In Minister Perera's own words it says 'I give time from my allocation. You go ahead and read the names of those who filed the case.' We do not enter into secret deals.

Minister Karunathilaka: No that was different. When Minister Perera was speaking he challenged the Opposition member to tell the names. That was how the names came out.

Deputy Minister Ajith P. Perera: Minister Jayasekera alleged that I gave four minutes of my time to the JO Member. The former President during his speech accused the Government of delaying elections. Then I questioned him as to who actually delayed the elections by filing the cases before Court. Then MP Wijesekera got up and said that it was those in the Government that had filed the case. I challenged him to tell the names. He did so. That was not a result of a deal. We do not have any deals with the JO. I did not give my time. We need an early election.

Minister Jayasekera: I listened to what transpired during the debate. You said that you would give time and asked the JO MP to tell the House the names. You permitted the JO member to sling mud at the SLFP.

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