The Sirasa game is now come right out into the open, where in the pretext of ousting the UNP leader, both Ranil and Sajith have been laid waste by the Rs 500M worth of free publicity given to publicize the name of Maithri Guneratne who gratuitously gets airtime to further the true agenda which is to promote the Democratic Party as the only alternative to the recklessly ruinous government and the disjointed and fractious opposition.
Fortunately for the Guneratnes, the latest turn of events where a hardly noticeable walk from Devundera on Saturday last was given undue prominence, by the UNP decision to counter strike from the same place for a pooja at the Devale, and ultimately turned into made for media event of a brawl in Matara town for all to see on their TV screens that night, a publicity worth billions that only benefitted the ulterior motives of the protagonists.
So as if Maithri Guneratne’s political future in the Democratic Party was ever in doubt due to the name recognition and publicity he receives thanks to Sirasa, the added bonus was the on TV James Bond antics of his father brandishing a pistol and shooting, whilst Maithri’s son was also seen blood splattered. The trio campaigning together is definitely a dream ticket for the Democratic Party to secure 3 slots in the SPC. The question is whether they wish to be in the Matara District to show Mangala that they can do it there, or in Galle which is where the family property is and Maithri is a provincial councilor.
With regard to any question as to why they forsook the UNP ticket it is simply because they have been expelled from the party and therefore not been given a ticket even if they wanted it!!
The Challenge for the UNP then is to try and pull in the troops for a bigger fight knowing full well that if not there will be a leakage to Fonseka due to name recognition, and not due to any special policy or alternative program being offered.
This is further evidence of the isolation of Sajith Premadasa who had asked the anti Ranil campaign not to drag him into it, so that he is not seen as directly challenging authority and leadership, through those who have been expelled from the party. He was playing safe, but in reality, distancing himself from the anti-Ranil faction and thereby losing some of his strong support base.
Let us watch this space and see what transpires in the ensuing 6 months.