… claims SLMC made Premadasa senior President
It was indeed a remarkable achievement to bring all politicians of various political camps together under one umbrella to ensure a landslide victory of Sajith Premadasa, at the oncoming presidential elections, said Leader of Sri Lanka Muslim Congress and Minister Rauff Hakeem speaking at a meeting held at Kalkudah in the Batticaloa District, during the weekend, campaigning in support of presidential candidate Sajith Premadasa. He said, “We unanimously selected Sajith Premadasa as the conduit to unite all parties of different communities and groups to ensure our outstanding victory.”
“For celebration of plurality and multi-cultural representations is imperative that we pledged our unanimous support for Sajith Premadasa,” Hakeem said.
“We must remember that in 1988, when Sajith’s father Ranasinghe Premadasa wanted to contest at the presidential elections the then United National Party hesitated to accept his nomination. There were many impediments and harassments that he had to face. Ultimately, he was allowed to contest. Ranasinghe Premadasa won the election and proved himself as one of the remarkable presidents of this country.”
At that time there was a fierce civil war in the North, armed insurrection in the south with Jantha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) crippling the entire country.
“The UNP government was unpopular at a time when Ranasinghe Premadasa was nominated as UNP’s presidential candidate. We must remember that the founder of Sri Lanka Muslim Congress late M. H. M. Ashraff took a brave decision to support R. Premadasa at this critical juncture and it was this vital decision that changed the fate of this country. Only a few expected R. Premadasa’s victory.”
“Although we have carried out many development programmes there were various baseless criticisms and false allegations from the people.”
Minister Hakeem noted that he was one of those who had started talking about this change well in advance. “When the UNP heads were struggling to make a decision, I had the courage to ask it to nominate Sajith Premadasa as the presidential candidate, who in our opinion will be the one and only leader who can make this change. I am highly delighted to be one of those who paved the way for this historic revolution.
“The countrywide mass gatherings at Sajith Premadasa’s meetings are proof of popular support for Sajith. Having no other way to divert this massive support to Sajith, the rivals, as usual and once again, are resorting to bitter racist tactics. They are spitting absolute racism with their uncivilized speeches at all their election propaganda meetings.
“Although, some pretend to be tolerant, their innate attitude gets exposed when they start speaking. Some were relieved that the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) was undecided earlier on. Now that the TNA too has taken a decision in favour of Sajith Premadasa, his rivals have lost hope.”
Minister Hakeem said that he had had a fruitful discussion with Mr. Thurairajasingham, former Eastern Province Minister and Batticaloa District President of the TNA. “He promised to conduct a house to house campaign for Sajith Premadasa. Sajith Premadasa has won the hearts of the people and his popularity is on the rise among people of all communities. This is a sure evidence for his landslide victory at the oncoming presidential election.”