Rebel UNPers violated party rules - lawyer

[TamilNet, Thursday, 27 January 2000, 11:52 GMT]
Petitioners including Dr Sarath Amunugama violated Party discipline when they met President Chandrika, who was a rival Presidential Candidate, at temple trees without the authority of the party and pledged her their support during the election campaign.

In such a context, what option other than expulsion does a democratic party have, President's Counsel Tilak Marapona posed addressing the Supreme Court supporting the expulsion of UNP MPS from the Party.

The Bench comprised Acting Chief Justice Dr.Amersinghe, Justice Ameer Ismail and Justice Shiranie Bandaranayaka.

Mr.Marapona continued that at their meeting with President Chandrika at Temple Trees, the petitioners pledged their support for her. They expressed the view that it was only she who could lead the country and resolve burning issues.

This was given wide publicity in the state controlled media and the private media. This affected the party image very strongly particularly at election time.

The working Committee thereafter expelled the petitioners from the party. The petitioners complain that there was no inquiry held prior to their expulsion and that they were not afforded an opportunity to explain.

Mr Marapona argued that what explanation could they have offered even if an inquiry had been held. Could they deny the meeting at temple trees. Could they deny their pledge to support the President. There is no explanation that could have been offered.

 

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