Sinhala nationalist party faces further crises
[TamilNet, Saturday, 09 October 2004, 01:34 GMT]
The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), a key Sinhala Buddhist nationalist group in Sri Lanka’s Parliament, said Friday that it had removed the party’s lay general secretary, Mr. Champika Ranawaka. The JHU was plunged in crisis following the resignation of its national organizer earlier in the day. Meanwhile, Mr. Ranawaka said that he was not going to accept the decision by the monks to remove him from the party. The JHU crisis has been further exacerbated by reports that it’s general secretary (clergy), Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka Thero, is supporting the ruling party.
In an indication that the party is fragmenting, Mr. Udyaya Gammanpilla, the assistant lay secretary of the party Friday declined to deny reports that he is joining the United National Party. Mr. Ranawaka and Mr. Gamanpilla are closely associated with EPDP and the paramilitary led by renegade LTTE commander ‘Karuna’ (Mr. Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan)
Monks led by Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka Thero say that the JHU was being misled by it’s lay leaders.