The greatest betrayal: Part five:
Fonseka, Sajith prime targets amidst rumours
Suspicion clouds Opposition’s campaign
Suspicion has taken center stage in New Democratic Front (NDF)
candidate Maithripala Sirisena’s election campaign.
While JHU stalwart Athuraliye Rathana, UNP deputy leader Sajith
Premadasa and the architect of the common candidate concept Maduluwawe
Sobhitha Thera maintained a low profile last week, Maithripala appeared
to be a dejected man after being isolated by some of the senior party
leaders in the so-called joint Opposition.
Maithipala is gradually finding that what Democratic Party leader
Sarath Fonseka said at the beginning of the campaign is right. Speaking
at the beginning of the so-called common candidate’s campaign, Fonseka
said that he has the best such experience and all those party leaders in
the Opposition who had been backing him during the campaign were found
missing overnight after his defeat.
Fonseka said that none of the party leaders in the common Opposition
were there for him after he lost the election and he had to wage his own
battle for survival after the defeat.
But Maithripala is experiencing it even before his impending defeat.
Fearing that two of the prominent leaders in the joint Opposition would
extend support to President Rajapaksa, Fonseka has begun suspecting
He does not believe anyone in the Opposition camp, fearing that two
leading players would inflict severe blows to his campaign.
Sarath Fonseka and Sajith Premadasa have been the two prime targets
who had been deliberately kept out of inner circle meetings. Friday’s
granting of bail to Fonseka’s son-in-law Dhanuna Tillakaratne has made
Maithipala even more suspicious of the former Army Commander. Insiders
said that Maithripala is now suspecting even his closest buddies.
“Because he has done a Judas, he assumes that there could be another
Judas who would be a traitor to him and buckle the election campaign,”
an inside source said.
Maithripala had even expressed his dissatisfaction to former
President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga on her promises which are
yet to become a reality. Although Chandrika had initially said she could
get 45 Government ministers to support Maithripala’s candidature, she
had only been able to get only three ministers and a couple of
parliamentarians while the Government had the prized catch of Tissa
Chandrika is now struggling to maintain her image. At the beginning
of the Opposition’s campaign, she talked big and said that she would be
able to get more than half of the Government ministers and MPs. But she
has cut a sorry figure, having failed to get even ten of them! Promising
finances to woo support for Maithripala’s campaign, several INGOs and a
couple of Western missions here have pumped a staggering sum, assuming
that they could cause a regime change.
Even Maithripala thought that Chandrika would make a huge impact on
his election campaign though he had turned traitor to the SLFP and the
President. That is precisely why Maithripala boasted of getting the
Government Ministers and MPs to his campaign stage in batches – 20 at
the start and 10 each week in the lead up to the January 8 poll.
But except for notorious figures such as Rajitha Senaratne, who was
convicted for trading with the Government and was unseated from
Parliament and ‘chit' MPs such as Rajiva Wijesinghe who has not won the
people’s franchise, hardly any creditable Cabinet Minister or a
Government MP joined Maithripala’s stage.
Hence, Maithripala is gradually feeling the heat as Chadrika
continues to give false promises to Maithripala. This situation is
similar to what Mangala did to Sarath Fonseka during his 2010 election
Mangala gave dubious figures on crowds present at the joint
Opposition rallies in 2010 and Fonseka totalled the numbers assuming
that all of them would vote for him. Fonseka was furious after his
humiliating defeat and reprimanded Mangala for misleading him.
Knowing what Maithripala’s fate would be by the time the election
results are announced on January 9 evening, Chandrika is sending SOS
calls to all her contacts. She continues to hang on to her satellite
phone given by a Western diplomat, firing repeated call to Cabinet
Ministers and Government parliamentarians.
But even those who had been extremely close to Chandrika during her
tenure as President politely reject her lucrative offers.
Maithripala has pleaded with Chandrika to woo the support of at least
a couple of UPFA parliamentarians to boost the morale of his campaign.
Even Mangala had said that there is an unbelievable drop in their
campaign after an explosive start with Maithripala’s betrayal.
The inner circle of the NDF candidate which met behind closed doors
on Tuesday has admitted that their campaign was like 'opening a soda
bottle'. There had been huge differences when drafting Maithripala’s
Although Maithripala preferred not to jump the gun by naming a Prime
Ministerial candidate, Ranil had insisted that his name should be
included in the manifesto as the Prime Minister, fearing that Chadrika
would enter from the back door. That is where uncertainty and suspicion
loomed within the Opposition tanks.
|Can betrayers protect peace?
“The question we must all ask ourselves at this point in time is
whether we are willing to risk the future of Sri Lanka by weakening our
resolve to protect what we have legitimately achieved. Can we trust
those whose past actions were dictated by external pressure, to do what
is best for Sri Lanka in the future?” Defence and Urban Development
Ministry Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa queried.
He made these observations addressing the 'Momentum Event' at the
Cinnamon Grand, Colombo on Wednesday.
Peace exists because the President had the political will, the
determination and the courage to see the military campaign through to
the very end, the Defence and Urban Development Ministry Secretary said.
“Peace exists because the Armed Forces carried out an extremely
difficult operation undergoing immense hardship for three and a half
years to defeat the terrorists. During this time, more than 6,000 brave
soldiers gave their lives and 25,000 more suffered serious injuries to
win our freedom from the clutches of LTTE's terror,” he said.
“The most critical thing for Sri Lanka today is the maintenance of
stability. Ensuring that our present momentum does not falter needs
continuity above everything else. All the problems caused by the three
decades of terrorism and lax governance of past governments cannot be
solved in five years," the Secretary said.
"The sheer range of issues is far too great to have been dealt with
comprehensively in such a short span of time. In fact, in consideration
of how vast these challenges were, the progress that has been achieved
by the incumbent government since the end of terrorism is truly
remarkable,” Secretary Rajapaksa said.
“Between 2006 and 2009, the government's focus was on ending
terrorism and bringing peace to Sri Lanka. From 2009 to date, its focus
has been on maintaining that peace, stability and security whilst
creating an environment conducive to sustained economic growth.
"As we go forward, I am absolutely certain that all the remaining
issues we face as a nation, including issues of national reconciliation
and good governance will be systematically addressed and solved by the
"This will contribute to the creation of a resurgent Sri Lanka that
can stand proudly and independently as a peaceful, stable, fast growing,
sovereign state in the community of nations. If this is to be the case,
we must not stray from the transformative path we have been on for the
last several years. Instead, we must continue on the journey we have
been on, together,” he added.
"It is both our duty and our privilege to sustain our present
momentum as a nation and achieve all we can for Sri Lanka and all Sri
Lankans,” he said.
“Because of this misreading of the nature of the LTTE threat either
through naďveté or willful ignorance, and also as a result of certain
geopolitical agendas, some influential foreign governments did not quite
support the government's decision in 2006 to pursue a military solution
to the terrorist conflict.
"Although several friendly countries had banned the LTTE, not all of
its activities in the international arena were stopped. For example, the
LTTE continued raising funds through various means and very successfully
procured weapons overseas,” Secretary Rajapaksa said
"Members of LTTE linked groups also exerted significant pressure on
the Sri Lankan government to stop the Humanitarian Operation. They
intensively lobbied foreign governments, organised large public protests
and used their influence with the international media to make various
allegations against the Sri Lankan military,” he added.
|Another Polonnaruwe Podi Wije?
Remember how NDF candidate Sarath Fonseka threatened during his 2010
Presidential election campaign - to bring his opponents to Galle Face
Green and punish them in public?
Five year later, another NDF candidate contesting the 2015
Presidential election – Maithripala Sirisena, has made a similar
statement. Maithripala brought back old memories of underworld leader
Polonnaruwe Podi Wije when he threatened to close the country’s
international airport to prevent his enemies leaving the country after
Maithripala said that he would close the gates of the airports on the
night of the election day – January 8, to prevent anybody leaving the
country. He said only those whom they clear would be granted permission
to leave the country.
Isn’t this a direct threat to the judiciary from a man who boasts of
good governance and independence of the judiciary? In any country, only
a court of law (a judge) could give an order to prevent a person
By making such a sweeping statement, Maithripala has given an early
indication that he would acquire the powers of the judiciary too,
instead of abolishing the Executive Presidency as promised!
|Not trustworthy, should be shunned by all Buddhists - Chief
Sanghanayake of the US
Chief Sanghanayake of the United States, Dr. Walpola Piyananda Thera
said that NDF candidate Maithripala Sirisena was not trustworthy and
should be shunned by all Buddhists as he had broken a promise he had
made by placing his hands on a casket containing the sacred relics of
Addressing a public rally organised by the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna
at Sathosa auditorium at Homagama on Wednesday evening, Ven. Piyananda
Thera had said that Maithripala had sworn by the casket of relics of the
Buddha in the presence of JHU’s Ven. Ellawela Medhananda that he would
never desert the President Rajapaksa or the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP).
“He had taken that oath by placing both hands on the casket of relics
brought to Temple Trees in view of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s
birthday. A person who does not honour such a solemn pledge could not be
considered a Buddhist. Hence, All the Buddhists should shun such a
person,” the Nayaka Thera said.
“Not only Buddhists, but also all other religions should stay away
from such an untrustworthy person. Catholics would never renege on a vow
taken on the Holy Bible and Muslims would never break a promise made on
the Holy Quran. For us nothing is holier than the Buddha’s relics. In
less than 24 hours after swearing on the relic casket, Maithripala
joined the Opposition leaving the President and the SLFP,” the Chief
Sanghanayake of the US said.
Ven Piyananda said that a person capable of lying with both hands on
a relic casket can betray anyone, adding that Maithripala seems to be
working on the instructions of a foreign power.
“He has shunned the Arya Sinhala national dress to wear an alien
jacket. People should understand this and must do their part to defeat
this threat to the national interest,” Ven. Piyananda said.
|Opposition meets LTTE agents in Singapore
Nine members of the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam were in
Singapore the same time as Maithripala, Ranil, Chandrika, Mangala and
company were in that country recently.
UPFA ministers yesterday said they will reveal all the secret
conspiracies hatched by some top members of the common opposition while
Addressing the media at the SLFP Headquarters yesterday, Irrigation
and Water Resources Management Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said the
common opposition is supporting anti-Mahinda Rajapaksa conspiracies
under the guidance of various international forces.
He said since November 2, 2004, Chandrika Kumaratunga, Maithripala
Sirisena, Champika Ranawaka, Ranil Wickremesinghe, Mangala Samaraweera
and Sarath Fonseka had been visiting Singapore on different occasions.
“We are in the process of discovering more information about these
Singapore tours. According to the information already received, nine
ministers of the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam were also in
Singapore during the same period. We will reveal this mega betrayal by
the common opposition with the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam,”
the minister said.
Mass Media and Information Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said several
members of the common opposition had visited Singapore recently and nine
out of 13 members of the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam were
also in Singapore during same time period.
“Several opposition members including Maithri, Ranil, Chandrika,
Champika, Sarath Fonseka, Hirunika, Digambaram and Mangala had visited
Singapore recently. Nine members of the Transnational Government of
Tamil Eelam were also in Singapore during that time. What is this
discussion? There are trying to destroying the stability of the
country,” the minister said.
Rambukwella said when a country has a patriotic leader who can face
any international challenge, no force cannot be allowed to raise its
The minister said several heads of western countries visited the
country during the latter part of the war and wanted to stall the
“But they couldn’t do it. Today they are attempting an Arab Spring.
But it cannot succeed without the support of the majority of Sri Lankans,”
“The common opposition has an agreement with 44 people. It is
questionable how they can ensure the stability of the country through
various opinions of all of them. People in this country will never let
them destabilise the country,” the Minister said.
Minister Rambukwella said more than 90 percent of women in this
country have come forward to support President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the
presidential election. “It is the women of this country who suffered the
most during the war and now their children, husbands and brothers are
able to live without fear and sorrow. They have come forward to pay
their gratitude to the leader who brought peace to the country,” he
|Dejected Maithri gives up belief in horoscope
Over 82 percent of the leading astrologers both here and in India
have said that NDF candidate Maithripala’s horoscope does not have a
‘raja yoga’ and that he is going through a lean period in his life for
the next nine years.
Fearing that this phobia would mentally affect him, Maithripala has
taken a decision – to publicly declare that he does not believe in
Addressing an election rally last week, Maithripala expressed that he
has no faith or belief in astrologers or personal horoscopes. Many of
whom who had seen how blindly Maithripala had gone behind astrologers,
even for the simplest matter, had their last laugh.
Maithripala now accuses astrologers of scaring the public by
spreading false rumours. “Now some astrologers attempt to cast bad omens
on me. They would tell you nothing, but lies,” he added.
|‘Chandrika's conduct, a disgrace to the Bandaranaike family’
The manner in which former President Chandrika Bandaranaike
Kumaratunga is acting today is a disgrace to both the Bandaranaike
family and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), Fisheries and Aquatic
Resources Development Deputy Minister Sarath Kumara Gunaratne said.
“The Bandaranaikes, a family that rendered a great service for the
well-being of Sri Lanka and the SLFP was the first political party to
introduce a people-friendly government. Former Prime Minister S.W.R.D.
Bandaranaike did a great service for the country laying the groundwork
for a strong economy while making the dreams and aspirations of the
common man come true.
"President Mahinda Rajapaksa who brought the country under one banner
by defeating terrorism has made the SLFP the only people-friendly
political party once again,” the Deputy Minister said.
“Former President Chandrika and a former SLFP General Secretary
Maithripala Sirisena have joined hands to cast aspersions on the
country's very first public-friendly political party - the SLFP,” he
“But now the people have clearly understood the needs and wants of
Chandrika and Sirisena. They have already understood that Chandrika did
not do anything for the well-being of the country during her 11-year
rule. Hence, the public will never again repose their trust in Chandrika
and her clique,” Gunaratne said.