Power transition should be peaceful - Madduma Bandara | Sunday Observer

Power transition should be peaceful - Madduma Bandara

Following the resignation of Mahinda Rajapaksa from the premiership yesterday, the UNP is gearing up to form a new government. A senior member of the UNP and former Law and Order and Public Administration Minister Ranjith Madduma Bandara in an interview with the Sunday Observer said the President and the Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe should iron out their differences and get together to govern the country.

Excerpts of the interview :

Q: The UPFA claims that the UNP could be the only political party which celebrates not having elections. They claim that, such acts clearly manifest the socalled democracy of UNP. Your comments ?

A: We do not hold elections as wished for by Mahinda Rajapaksa. We were given power to govern the country for five years.

I assume they are in a hurry because they want to cover up their past corrupt practices by coming back to power. No one can hurry elections as per their wish. Elections can be held, to a particular schedule and only if the people want it.

Q: If the next Prime Minister is Ranil Wickremesinghe, there could be a clash between the President and Prime Minister. Isn’t that so?

A: We look forward to ruling the country reducing such tensions between the President and the Prime Minister and request that they work together in friendship. People have given us the mandate to govern the country for five years. Duties should be resumed with that understanding.

Q: The country is on the verge of welcoming 2019 without a budget. What is the solution to that?

A: We had prepared a budget which was due to be presented in Parliament on November 5.

The country is faced with this issue because of the forcible removal of power from the legitimate government. When the new government takes over the problem will be solved.

Q: Rumours say that Ravi Karunanayake will be the next Finance Minister. Is that true?

A: It is up to the Prime Minister to decide. He has the authority to do so.

Q: Does the UNP plan to appoint the same ministers as prior to October 26?

A: May be. We haven’t taken a decision on it yet. PM Ranil Wickremesnghe would take the initiative to make the appointments.

Q: There was a tense situation soon after the Supreme Court’s judgement last Thursday.

Will the UNP take disciplinary action against those who tried to enter Lake House building forcefully?

A: There was an incident in front of Lake House. We must ask the SLFP or SLPP, what action they took on the incidents at ITN and Rupavahini on October 26.

Q: What action will the UNP take to avoid similar incidents at government institutions, especially at State media institutions, in the event of a transition of power ?

A: I think power should be transferred in a peaceful and democratic way.