Ranil Wickremesinghe, Leader of the United National Party (UNP), has stated that the party will decide on a new leader “when the time is right”.
This statement follows calls from a senior UNP official for a change in leadership during his election campaigns. Navin Dissanayake, the UNP National Organiser and Nuwara Eliya District UNP candidate, recently criticised the leadership stating that the same person who had been the leader for 26 years could not continue to be the leader of the party.
Dissanayake has further called for the new leadership to be elected through a secret ballot and according to the party constitution without causing any rift within. Wickremesinghe similarly states that the only condition he had was that the UNP must remain united in their decision over the new leader.
In the run-up to this parliamentary election, which will be held on 5 August, Sri Lanka’s former finance minister and senior United National Party official, Ravi Karunayake, said his party had now been cleansed of those who had been “speaking against Buddhism… and standing up only for the minorities”.
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