by Zacki Jabbar
Denying that President Maithripala Sirisena had threatened to quit the National Unity Government at Tuesday’s cabinet meeting, Ministers Rajitha Senaratne and Dayasiri Jayasekera said yesterday that the President had only expressed displeasure at vilifying remarks against him by some UNP parliamentarians.
Fielding questions during the post cabinet Press Briefing at the Information Department, Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne and Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera said in unison that at no stage did the President say that it would not be possible to continue in the National Unity Government, but was critical of some UNP parliamentarians who were slandering him.
They said the President had left the meeting only after making his concerns known. He may have gone to answer a call of nature, Jayasekera added.”
He said that Srisena had made it clear that appointment of the Commission to investigate the issuance of Treasury Bonds in 2015 and 2016, had not been directed specifically at the UNP.
The President emphasised that action would be taken on the 34 reports of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry to Investigate and Inquire into Serious Acts of Fraud, Corruption and Abuse of Power, State Resources and Privileges (PRECIFAC) which were submitted to Parliament yesterday, Jayasekera noted.
Senaratne said Prime Minister Wickremesinghe had agreed to caution UNP Mps, including former Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake to restrain themselves.
Some UNP parliamentarians had also raised concerns about the vilifying statements about the Prime Minister by some SLFP Mps, he noted adding that President Sirisena had also assured that he would similarly caution SLFP MPs.
Jayasekera said during an election various political statements were made, but the SLFP and UNP were mature enough to resolve such issues.
It was sad to see some in the Government making a laughing stock of themselves, by attacking each other, Senaratne observed. “President Sirisena recently told those SLFP’ers who do not agree with its policies, to leave without creating unnecessary friction.”