23 October, 2017

WikiLeaks: UNP Leadership Crisis – Despite Criticism, No Clear Alternative

“Despite the criticism, Wickremesinghe seems set to hang on as party leader, as there are no clear challengers to his rule at this time.” the US Embassy Colombo informed Washington.

The Colombo Telegraph found the related leaked cable from the WikiLeaks database. The cable is classified as “CONFIDENTIAL” and discuses the UNP’s internal crisis after the 2005 April parliamentary election. The cable is signed by the US Ambassador to Colombo Jeffrey J. Lunstead on May 12, 2004.

Ranil and John

The ambassador wrote; “Long-standing UNP members have also criticized Wickremesinghe’s election strategy, though mostly in private. In a May 10 meeting with the DCM, for example, former Interior and Christian Affairs Minister John Amaratunga said the UNP had lost the election due in part to a lack of charisma on Wickremesinghe’s part. Amaratunga stated: ‘You have to at least give the impression that you are willing to die for what you stand for.’ During the May 10 UNP meeting, Amaratunga related that one party member had complained to Wickremesinghe’s face that his constituents were unhappy that the former PM never smiles and they wonder why they should vote for the UNP. Amaratunga said Wickremesinghe did not respond, remaining stonefaced. In a conversation with Ambassador on April 8, former minister Milinda Moragoda remarked that Wickremesinghe ‘did not have the common touch.’ Moragoda, who is a close adviser to Wickremesinghe, compared him unfavorably with former President J.R. Jayawardene, who ran a series of strong UNP campaigns in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. (One major exception to the mainly quiet nature of complaints about Wickremesinghe by UNP figures was former foreign minister Tyronne Fernando, who went public with his opposition to Wickremesinghe in late April. Fernando’s outburst appeared more linked with the UNP’s decision not to give him a “national list” seat in Parliament, however, than actual animus toward Wickremesinghe. Fernando has since resigned from the UNP.)”

Under the subheading “Despite criticism, no clear alternative” the ambassador wrote; “Despite the criticism, Wickremesinghe seems set to hang on as party leader, as there are no clear challengers to his rule at this time. In the May 10 conversation with the DCM noted above, for example, former minister John Amaratunga said that he had recently been in several UNP meetings at which there had been ‘frank discussions’ as to whether Wickremesinghe should be replaced. Amaratunga said the conclusion from the meetings was that Wickremesinghe should not be forced out right away. He also said he felt that former Minister of Power and Energy Karu Jayasuriya — who some interlocutors have recommended as a possible replacement for Wickremesinghe — was ‘not a viable option.’ Amaratunga noted that he was not impressed with Jayasuriya’s organizational and leadership abilities, for example. Party dissidents themselves, such as Premadasa and others, have also failed to name a definitive alternative to Wickremesinghe. In the meantime, in his meeting with the Ambassador, G.L. Peiris indicated that he did not think that efforts to remove Wickremesinghe would go anywhere. He added that reported tensions in the party were ‘much exaggerated.’ (According to observers, aside from Jayasuriya, other possible replacements for Wickremesinghe include: Joseph Michael Perera, a senior UNP MP and former Speaker; K. Rambukwella, a senior MP and former minister; and Milinda Moragoda.)”

Related posts;

WikiLeaks: Ranil Is A Perennial Loser As Well As A Perennial Survivor – US

WikiLeaks: US Skeptical About Ranil’s Claim That He Has Tremendous Grassroots Support

WikiLeaks: UNP Leader Under Fire From Within His Party – 2004 US Ambassador

WikiLeaks: Two Main Challenges To Ranil’s Leadership – 2004 US Ambassador

WikiLeaks: Ranil Never Really Took People Into Confidence

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    UNP is clearly morally, ethically and intellectually BANKRUPT! It had imploded, has no leaders capable of taking a stand and getting RID of Ranil the shameless Dictator. UNP needs to be buried. This is Ranil’s achivement..

    The UNP has decided to boycott the CHOGM circus for the WRONG REASONS: because Mangala was caught leading attackers of the Anti-Ranil March (as he should be for inciting public disorder), rather than on PRINCIPLES – that the Rajapassa govt has violated all principles of GOOD GOVERNANCE, Illegally impeached the CJ etc. and has turned Lanka into a Military Dictatorship which should NOT be patronized by foreign heads of state going the the Commonwealth of Nation CHOGM show. Also the Commonwealth organization is a British Colonial relic that is highly irrelevant and obsolete organization turned into a platform for Third world dictators. This is why the DODO Prince Charles is Chief guest!

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    UNP needs a CLEAN BREAK from Ranil Wickramasinghe who has RUINED the party. The spectacle of the protests, fighting and arrests of UNPers in Matara and elsewhere, is too damaging and distressing to the party which is BROKEN. This is all because of Ranil Wickramasinghe refusing to STEP DOWN, groom a second tier of intelligent leaders and hand over to the next generation as he should have years ago..
    Ranil should be forced to go on a six months holiday with a THERAPIST to help him LET GO and STOP CLINGING to the UNP party that he has destroyed – all expenses paid. The UNP needs to go through a catharsis, a purge of Ranil and his cronies, and have an ENTIRELY NEW LEADSERSHIP..
    Civil society MUST also ask Ranil to get out and stop destroying the party which is NOT his private property. Unfortunately it now seems that Sajith the liar will now inherit leadership by DEFAULT because Ranil got rid of most of the better people.. What a tragedy..

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    The Anti-Ranil demonstrators did not carry poles to ONLY attack Mangala’s mob.

    Guess again !

    Mangala is a government plant with a mission to A]Ensure that Ranil remains the leader of the UNP. B]Simultaneously ensure that any leadership bid made by Sajith is brought down.That’s why Sajith was checkmated in the elections’ campaign organisational run-up for the recent PC elections.

    Sajith could have turned the electorate around and reduced the government into a less commanding position in the PC’s. That could not be allowed.Had that been allowed, Sajith’s leadership stakes would have risen appreciably.

    That would have BEEN THE POWERFUL CATALYST NEEDED TO create a post-election leadership challenge that Ranil would have caved under.

    Enough is enough and Sajith has obviously decided to turn the screwS FOR CHANGE just that little bit and infuse some aggression into his bid for party leadership.

    He is least likely to forget how government goons wadeD into the pro-Sarath Fonseka demonstrations, the brutal quelling of the Welikada Prison riots etc.,

    MR and Ranil/Mangala would have received a rude shock at the preparedness of the Anti-Ranil demonstrators and so held back police/army intervention with orders for Mangala’s men to fall back and not precipitate a major WELIVERIYA STYLE crisis on the eve of CHOGM.

    Only the naive will believe otherwise. Ranil had his lines ready about MangaLa being made a political prisoner.Bulldust.It was all about crisis prevention and containment. Too much at stake BEFORE CHOGM.

    THE GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN SHAKEN WITH REPORTS OF THE PRESENCE OF CHANEL 4 REPORTERS IN THE COUNTRY UNDER THE GUISE OF TOURISTS. EXPOSURE ON CHANEL 4 OF UNIFORMED SOLDIERS OR COPS IN A WELIVERIYA STYLE SHOOTING SPREE JUST WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN NICE FOR THE GOVERNMENT ON THE EVE OF CHOGM.

    SO, CALL OFF MANGALA’S GOONS[READ GOVERNMENT GOONS]PREEMPT VIOLENCE AT LEAST UNTIL CHOGM IS BEHIND US.

    BUT AT THE SLIGHTEST PROVOCATION THE GOVERNMENT IS VERY LIKELY TO OVER-REACT WITH THE TERRIFYING WORD “SPRING” IN THE WIND, MENTIONED I THINK IN PARLIAMENT ITSELF FOR THE FIRST TIME BY A GOVERNMENT MP.

    FEARS CAN MAKE ANYONE SEE PHANTOMS NOT ONLY IN THE NIGHT BUT AT MID-DAY AS WELL !

    MY GUESS IS THAT SAJITH PREMADASA IS PREPARING FOR A BAPTISM IN FIRE.
    GOD ALONE KNOWS WHAT FORCES SUCH A SCENARIO CAN UNLEASH ISLANDWIDE.

    RANIL’S STUPIDITY BLINDS HIM TO THE VOLCANIC FORCES HE HAS BEEN CREATING BY HIS EGOISTICALLY REPRESSIVE MANIPULATIONS TO MAINTAIN HIS IDIOTIC AND PUERILE HOLD ON PARTY LEADERSHIP AND THEREBY HELP BUTTRESS THE FORTUNES OF THE GOVERNMENT.

    IT IS A TRUISM THAT WHAT YOU RESIST PERSISTS. WHAT CONTINUES TO BE RESISTED BUILDS UP IN FORCE. WHEN THAT REACHES SATURATION POINT, YOU HEAR THE KETTLE WHISTLE.

    WE’RE SITTING ON A POWDER KEG THANKS TO RANIL WICKREMESINGHE.

    sRI LANKA’S STUPID VOTERS LOOK ON LIKE SOME IMBECILES SWEPT AWAY IN A FLOOD THAT’S TAKING THEM ALONG WITH IT.

    tHE NATION TEETERS ON THE BRINK OF DISASTER THAT’S BEEN PRECIPITATED BY ONE MAN’S EGOCENTRIC STUPIDITY. HE WILL BE AMONG THE FIRST TO BE CAUGHT UP IN THE DESTRUCTION THAT THE MACHIAVELLIAN ELEMENTS ARE ENGINEERING TO ENSURE THEIR HOLD ON POWER.

    SIRI KOTHA TODAY IS AS SQUALID AND IMPOTENT AS THE GOVERNMENT WANTS IT TO BE.

    SOMETHING’S GOTTA GIVE. ONE CAN SMELL IT IN THE AIR.

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      How Imagination runs riot in small minds. How Pathetic?

      No wonder that there is no medicine for naivete. Incurable sadly.

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      You certainly seem to give a lot of credit to a class A moron. Those who know the real story will laugh their backsides off at you. But then again a very good attempt at turning things upside down. A well known trait of deception practiced by U No who.

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    From the comments you can judge mentality of the readers who read this paper

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