TNA will not win power in the East: If the Tamils wishes to have a Chief Minister again, Vote for UPFA
There is no chance at all for the Tamil National Alliance to obtain power in the Eastern Province and if the Tamils wanted a Tamil to be the Chief Minister again, then they must vote for the United People Freedom Alliance.
Minister Susil Premajayantha told the Asian Tribune that If you analyse the Province , then you will find Muslims 41 percent, Tamils 30 percent and the balance Sinhalese. This is the ethnic make-up of the Eastern Province.
Minister of Petroleum Industries Susil Premajayantha said you know as Pillaiyan is contesting, what the Tamils of the Eastern Province should do is to support Pillaiyan.
The UPFA General Secretary Susil Premajayantha said that you must understand there is no chance for the Tamil National Alliance to get to power in the East. And it is the only chance for the Tamils to have their chief Minister again is only by casting their votes to the UPFA.
He also said that Pillaiyan is also considered a balance person amongst the Muslims and the Sinhalese.
Given below the excerpts of the interview Asian Tribune had with Minister Susil Premajayantha, the General Secretary of the United Peoples Freedom Alliance, about the forthcoming three Provincial Council elections:
Asian Tribune: < What is happening with the three Provincial Council Elections?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: Election preparations are going on very well. We will finalize our nominations and by Sunday we will start signing nomination papers. On 18th we will hand over all the nomination papers of the UPFA in the seven districts.
Asian Tribune: What are the seven districts you are referring to?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: Eastern province three, Subragamuwa two and North Central two.
Asian Tribune: Have you finalized about the Chief Minister candidates?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: Chief Ministers of course there is nothing new at the moment . So then, the former chief ministers are there and they will be the group leaders of the respective districts.
Asian Tribune: According to you, as far as the Eastern Province is concern, Sivanesathurai Chanthirakanthan alias Pilliyan will be the group leader of the Batticaloa district.
Minister Susil Premajayantha: Yes, he will be the group leader for the district of Batticaloa.
Asian Tribune: What about the other two districts in the Eastern Province?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: With regard to the other two districts, we have to decide – in one district a Muslim and in the other a Sinhalese.
Asian Tribune: So you want to have a Sinhalese as a group leader in Amparai.
Minister Susil Premajayantha: We will see . It all depends on the number of candidates and the seniority.
Asian Tribune: What about Subragamuwa? Are you nominating any Tamils as your candidate?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: Yes ... yes, in Sabragamuwa there will be Tamil candidates both from Kegalle and Ratnapura from our party.
Asian Tribune: What about Ceylon Workers Congress? Will they be with the UPFA?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: The CWC, of course, we met them yesterday and in the last time they contested separately. They tried to get the entire estate sector Tamils together, then they can get at least one representative.
This time also they are trying to get all the estate Tamil parties under one umbrella.
Asian Tribune: Are they contesting with the UPFA or separately?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: I think that they are planning to contest separately. That is good for them, because if they contest under UPFA , their candidate must at least get 15,000 preference votes. It will be difficult to get by fighting the other candidates. Therefore, that is no harm contesting separately and if they get 10,000 preferential votes, then they can get one representative.
Asian Tribune: Earlier, if I remember correctly, they had two Tamil representatives.
Minister Susil Premajayantha: Yes, correct , that was in the early nineties they had two Tamil representatives – one from Ratnapura and one from Kegalle.
Asian Tribune: Now it seems it is difficult to get at least one Tamil representative. So what about the North Central province?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: North Central Province of course, we have only Muslims and not the Tamils there. The Muslim Congress is contesting with us and they have one member in Anuradapura and we will also nominate one Muslim candidate from the Polonaruwa district.
Asian Tribune: In the fifties my uncle Nadarajah was the Chairman of Anuradapura Town Council and we had the famous Chittampalam Cinema in Anuradapura. But later due to some scheming, Anuradapura Town council was dissolved and during the 1958 riots, almost all the Tamil population in Anuradhapura was chased out.
Yesterday we carried a news item about the arrangements being made by the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress and reported Minister Rauf Hakeem to meet President Mahinda Rajapaksa to finalize the modalities?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: Yes, he met the President after the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday and discussed with him about the modalities.
Asian Tribune: Was there any discussion about the chief ministership?
Minister Susil Premajayantha: No. He asked the formula or the modalities as to how we are going to nominate and that’s all.
We are confident of winning all the three provincial councils. And Eastern Provincial Council also is very important because it is a typical provincial council,
Once we win all the three provincial councils, of which we are very confident and then we can send a very strong message to the international community.
Asian Tribune: I am of the opinion that this time if Rauf Hakeem, Rishad Bathiyutheen and Athaula, the three Muslim leaders jointly work together then the Mulims will get more seats than the Tamils in the East.
Minister Susil Premajayantha: If you analyse the Province , in the East you will find Muslims 41 percent, Tamils 30 percent and the balance Sinhalese. That is the ethnic make-up of the Eastern Province.
You know as Pillaiyan is contesting and what the Tamils of the Eastern Province should do is to support Pillaiyan.
Asian Tribune: It was Asian Tribune which identified Pillaiyan, propagated him, moulded him as a politician and sponsored him in the Provincial Council election and very strongly advocated for his Chief Ministership.
Minister Susil Premajayantha: You must understand that there is no chance for the Tamil National Alliance to get to power in the East.
And it is the only chance for the Tamils to have their chief Minister again, is only by casting their votes to the UPFA.
You must also know that Pillaiyan is considered a balance person amongst the Muslims and the Sinhalese.
- Asian Tribune –