Calling the Leader of the Opposition MP R. Sampanthan a virtual Cabinet Minister of the Yahapalanaya Government, the Joint Opposition yesterday charged that the Government was ‘playing games’ to further delay Provincial Council elections.
The Joint Opposition Group Leader in Parliament MP Dinesh Gunawardana told Daily FT that the Government was resorting to cheap political tactics to delay holding Provincial Council elections.
“Those who wanted the new electoral system are now calling for its abolition. These are the games that the Government is playing to further delay provincial council elections.”
He said that the JO was opposed to the new electoral system.
“We are the only political group that has stood unwaveringly calling for elections. The Opposition Leader is a virtual Cabinet Minister working for the Government. We are against the new electoral system but what we demand are elections. We stand by the Election Commission to call for elections,”
Furthermore, MP Gunawardana said that the SLFP group of 16 had begun meeting with the coalition parties of the Joint Opposition, having met the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna (MEP) – led by Gunawardana – last Friday.
“During our meeting with the Group of 16 we discussed a range of topics including how joint action could be taken in Parliament to get rid of the incumbent Government. We also spoke of other areas of common agreement such as the upcoming Provincial Council elections, parliamentary elections, the deep economic crisis taking place in the country and a strategy to defeat the Government,” MP Gunawardana said.
He noted that the Group of 16 was scheduled to meet other member parties of the Joint Opposition today (26), tomorrow (27) and the day after (28).