UNP MP Harsha De Silva yesterday proposed an amendment to his party’s constitution in order to make provisions to elect a new leader through a vote.
Dr. de Silva who was speaking to the UNP activists in Sri Jayawardenepura, Kotte said party constitution should be changed to make provisions to elect a leader through a vote of MPs and working committee members at least.
“It is better if the members of local government bodies, Provincial council members and members of Parliament of the UNP is given the right to elect a leader through a vote. However only the MPs and working committee members of the party should be given that right if it is not possible to be given to others the right of electing a leader,” Dr De Silva said. “It is not possible to hold a vote to elect a party leader as per the present constitution of the party. However it is always possible to change party constitution, he said. “There is no reason why we can’t change the UNP constitution when the country’s constitution has been amended 19 times,” he added.
He said what UNP should focus today is to determine whether it go should along in the same road and the bus with a new driver, or to go in the same bus with the same driver on a new road or to go along with a new bus. “ The bus might skid and turn over if several drivers man the steering wheel as some have proposed,” he said,
“ I am not prepared to go in a new bus ,” he added. He also said Party leader Ranil Wickremesinghe should be given a role to play in the party even if a new leader is appointed. He therefore suggested Mr. Wickremesinghe could be appointed as a senior Advisor or a mentor of the party like it was in the case in Singapore where late Lee Kuan Yew was appointed as a senior Minister after his retirement and the appointment of Goh Chok Tong became the new Prime Minister.