Lay leaders of JHU move to contain damage

[TamilNet, Saturday, 09 October 2004, 14:52 GMT]
Lay leaders of Jathika Hela Urumaya(JHU), a key Sinhala Buddhist nationalist party in the Sri Lankan Parliament, agreed Saturday to discuss next week a proposal to completely restructure the organisation. Sources close to the JHU dismissed speculation that Mr.Udaya Gamanpilla, the assistant lay general secretary of the party intended to join the United National Party. "It part of a UNP conspiracy to undermine JHU", the sources said.

The Supreme Sangha Council of the JHU, the apex clerical body of the party of the party Friday dismissed the lay central committe. With the dismissal, all lay office bearers of the JHU lost their positions. "Basically the monks tried to shut out the lay political leadership of the party by sacking the central committee", a source close to JHU said.

Under the provisions of the JHU constitution the Supreme Sangha Council has no authority to unilaterally dismiss the lay central committee.

The lay leadership of the party led by Mr. Champika Ranawaka Saturday initiated negotiated negotiations with the clergy to resolve the matter without going to courts challenging the supreme sangha council's action.

A compromise was reached Saturday that the lay leadership of the JHU would discuss a proposal by the clergy to completely restructure the organisation.

 

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