Karu Says He "Doesn't Mind" Taking Up PM's Post: Party Members Shoot Down Karu's Move With Contempt

Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, who hitherto operated as a silent observer in the UNP, has informed his close associates that he does not mind becoming the Prime Minister of a "new UNP government."

His associates have communicated the message to President Maithripala Sirisena who has been pushing for Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's resignation since the defeat of the Local Government election.

The move, however, has been immediately shot down by an overwhelming majority of Parliamentary group members who said Prime Minister Wickremesinghe should continue as the party leader and lead the UNP government.

"It is a small group with personal interests  that is supporting Jayasuriya. They are only driven by a personal agenda. The party fully supports Prime Minister Wickremesinghe," a senior cabinet minister of the UNP said this morning. 

They had categorically stated that President Sirisena, who only managed to get 13% percent votes at the Local Government polls, cannot talk about removing the Prime Minister. 

Jayasuriya had attempted to take over the UNP leadership on many occasions and all his attempts proved to be futile.  

Later he crossed over to the Rajapaksa government with 17 UNP MPs and accepted ministerial portfolios. After a fall out with former President Mahinda Rajapaksa Jayasuriya came back to the UNP and Wickremesinghe promoted him to the position of the party deputy leader.

At the height of the UNP's internal power struggle in 2014, Wickremesinghe went on to appoint a leadership council appointed Jayasuriya as its Chairman. 

Jayasuriya also made a brief, unsuccessful attempt to be the Common Candidate of the opposition at the last Presidential election. The move was short-lived as current President Sirisena was accepted by the UNP as the opposition's Common Candidate. 

© 2017 Asian Mirror (pvt) Ltd