United National Party (UNP) Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday pledged new faces would get nominations at the upcoming General Elections as the second tier leadership of the party gets more authority while parliamentary affairs will be handled by Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa.
Wickremesinghe made the comments addressing the UNP Youth Wing members at the party headquarters Sirikotha. “I have handed over the task of handling Parliament affairs to the Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa who has been named as the Leader of the Opposition,” he said, pointing out that it was time to think of the party’s future.
Addressing the youth members Wickremesinghe opined that if the same number of votes secured by the coalition during the recent Presidential Elections was won at the General Elections the UNP will be able to secure the 19th Amendment.
“It will be possible to safeguard the 19th Amendment to the Constitution and human rights if the entire opposition obtains a total of 105 seats at the general election,” he said, explaining that if the campaign was run effectively there was a possibility of securing a majority in Parliament.
Wickremesinghe called on the Youth Movement to attract new young voters citing the need to attract the majority community towards the party. He pointed out that blaming individuals and debating the Presidential Election loss will not get the party anywhere.
He recalled how UNP leaders in the past went back to work after tough election losses and redoubled efforts to strengthen the party, calling on the youth present to follow the example.
The UNP last week decided to appoint Sajith Premadasa as the Opposition Leader in Parliament and pledged to appoint a committee to consider the party leadership as well as other issues. The committee, which was expected to be appointed yesterday, was not announced to the media.