Supporting Fonseka to abolish Executive Presidency: Ranil
Last Updated: Sunday, December 20, 2009, 17:56
Colombo: Sri Lanka's main opposition party is supporting the candidature of Sarath Fonseka in order to abolish Executive Presidency in the country, UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe today said, as he hoped to be the Prime Minister if the former general wins.

"I have functioned before as Executive Prime Minister in an Executive Cabinet and I hope to do so again," former prime minister said this describing his role in the event of Fonseka winning the January 26 presidential elections.

Wickremesinghe talked about three main issues on which he stood to gain if the former General were to be elected as the next president of Sri Lanka in the Presidential elections to be held on January 26.

"The first would be to establish democracy. Second, to install a parliamentary system of government, which will have a majority of United National Party MPs. Third, I hope to function as Executive Prime Minister," the Sunday Leader quoted Wickremesinghe as saying.

He was also asked as to why his United National Party for the first time in its entire history has fielded a presidential candidate outside the party.

Wickremesinghe responded, "We have not fielded someone outside the UNP. We are merely supporting General Sarath Fonseka, in order to abolish the Executive Presidency, as the (Marxist) JVP are doing, despite a whole lot of ideological differences with the UNP."

"We are all committed to the same cause. To restore democracy in this country," Wickremesinghe said.

Wickremesinghe asserted that he is confident Fonseka will also garner considerable votes from the Tamil and Muslim minority parties.

"We have agreed on a ten point plan for the future of Sri Lanka – a country with a vision which would include the resettlement of IDPs, dealing with all those homeless since 1983 and all those under detention without charge," the newspaper quoted him as saying.

Wickremesinghe was asked if Fonseka would not require the office of Executive President to eradicate corruption – which has been Fonseka's battle cry since he began running for president.

In response Wickremesinghe said, "We have agreed even after the Executive Presidency is abolished the General should head a council that will monitor the anti corruption drive.

This Council, Wickremesinghe asserted, should be non partisan and representative of all members in society including the opposition and civil society."

Responding specifically to the question on what role exactly the General would play if the Presidency is abolished Wickremesinghe said, "He will head this council," the Sunday Leader quoted him as saying.


First Published: Sunday, December 20, 2009, 17:56

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