By Easwaran Rutnam
Attempts made today by former Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to unite the Ranil Wickremesinghe and Sajith Premadasa factions of the United National Party (UNP) ended in failure.
Talks between both sides mediated by Jayasuriya and former Parliamentarian Arjuna Ranatunga took place today.
UNP sources said that the meeting took place at Jayasuriya’s residence and involved mostly legal representatives from both camps.
At the meeting both sides failed to reach an agreement on the constitution of the Samagi Jana Balawegaya.
Wickremesinghe has already urged the Samagi Jana Balawegaya to make amendments to the party constitution as proposed by the UNP and submit the document with amendments.
Sources said that at the meeting at Jayasuriya’s residence, Ranil Wickremesinghe’s camp had sought a copy of the amended constitution of the Samagi Jana Balawegaya.
However, on the advise of Premadasa, the representatives of the Samagi Jana Balawegaya refused to hand over a copy of the amended constitution.
Wickremesinghe’s representatives had also reiterated the position taken by the UNP that the Samagi Jana Balawegaya contest the Parliamentary election under the elephant symbol.
However Premadasa’s camp refused to agree and eventually the talks held this morning ended in failure.
Meanwhile, in a statement issue later, former Speaker Karu Jayasuriya said that he mediated in two days of talks involving the two factions in the UNP.
He said that while a final agreement had not been reached he will continue to mediate if the need arises. (Colombo Gazette)