President Maithripala Sirisena addressing UPFA supporters at a rally held in Hakmana last evening. Pictures courtesy President’s Media Division. No Sri Lankan will be sent to the electric chair during my tenure, assured President Maithripala Sirisena. The President was addressing UPFA supporters at a rally held in Hakmana last evening. The President gave this assurance in response to the fear allayed by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa while attending a television programme the previous day ‘that he still feared of being destined to the electric chair’.
“Matara is famous for its contribution to the country’s economy and its high percentage of intellectuals who have gained national and international fame. As a result in the past eight decades, Matara has been in the fore front of producing leftist as well as progressive political leadership,” President Sirisena said. “During the past three years, I have not permitted a single square inch of this country to be sold to any foreign country and only agreed to lease land,” the President said. “Accordingly, I had the Port City agreement be amended. I take this opportunity to assure you that it will be the Sri Lanka Freedom Party that will safeguard the nation’s sovereignty in the future,”the President said.
“There was an allegation that I retrenched over 400 staff attached to the Presidential Secretariat after I assumed duties. The truth is that of the over 1600 persons attached to the Presidential Secretariat, around 400 only visited the place to draw their salary. They were not laid off but assigned to other ministries as the Presidential Secretariat was over staffed. I also ensured that all casual workers were given permanent appointments” “It is a democratic right of the people to criticize government decisions. During the past three years, there have been no state sponsored murders or disappearances, no fear of white vans, no journalists having to leave the country, no newspapers editors murdered on the streets nor were any media institutions set ablaze,”the President said.
“I trust that you will vote for the SLFP, the UPFA and other parties in our alliance to help create new nation free of corruption and fraud. You have the opportunity to do so on February 10th”. Fisheries Minister and State Minister for Mahaweli Development Mahinda Amaraweera, State for Enterprise Development Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena and Provincial Minister for Eduction Chandima Rasaputhra were among those who addressed the rally.