Political Maneuvering takes centre stage in current landscape
Dammika’s DP computer classes turned election gimmick
Ranil’s alliance bid ends in failure
Shifts in political landscape
SJB internal strife reveals factional zombies
Breakaway movement emerges: Dissent grows within the ruling party
The zombies are defeated
The commencement of the year 2024 ushered in early indications of imminent political upheavals. With the presidential election slated for this year, numerous political parties are actively engaged in meetings and conferences geared towards preparation. However, strategic readiness remains a challenge. In a noteworthy move, Mr. Sajith Premadasa, the leader of Samagi Jana Balavegaya, unveiled a significant plan for the country on January 1st.
This unveiling took the form of appointing Mr. Shan Wijayalal de Silva, formerly the senior vice-president of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party—a recognized figure for integrity—as a politician. Mr. de Silva assumed the role of the Ambalangoda Constituency Organizer. Notably, Sajith executed this operation with utmost secrecy. The motivation behind this discreet approach was the potential threat posed by internal and external forces seeking to undermine the emerging alliance between the Sajith and G.L.Peiris factions.
In recent weeks, our reporting has shed light on how these disruptive elements, often referred to as political “zombies,” have actively worked to dismantle the SJB alliance. These individuals have made various disruptive statements aligned with the government’s agenda. We possess a comprehensive list of the names of these political disruptors and are prepared to disclose this information to the public, unveiling their identities at a critical juncture when they are brought before the people.
How Shan’s advent took place
When various forces were plotting to derail the formation of the alliance between Sajith and G.L., Sajith carried out the operation of enrolling the senior vice president of the SLFP in a very covert manner. Only a few people who work closely with Sajith were aware of this operation.
Shan is a respectable, educated, and well-liked political figure in Galle, with high integrity who works closely with the grassroots. Shan’s dissatisfaction with SLFP policies and willingness to work with SJB was known to Sajith a few months ago. This information was given to Sajith by a well-known individual who is not involved in politics. The ‘Inside Politics’ column knows where this person is and who he is, but we are keeping that information private for the time being. Nonetheless, as noted by this columnist, the operation was slowed by some political and climatic waves.
But again, a key plantation politician who is in alliance with Sajith took the initiative to bring out Shan’s topic. It was none other than Palani Digambaram. Digambaram intervened in the operation and took over its affairs, and it was seen that the operation was progressing rapidly. But the main issue that arose in the extremely secret discussions held in certain places was regarding the seat that would be given to Shan if he joined the party. Shan’s political seat is Ambalangoda. But at this time, Bandulal Bandarigoda, who is known as a main speaker and an organizer who pulls more weight, was working as the organizer of Ambalangoda for SJB.
But in the last general election, Bandulal was defeated because he could not arrange the necessary money to spend on the election campaign. Saying that Sajith never left Bandulal alone. Accordingly, when Bandulal’s problem arose regarding the Ambalangoda constituency, while Sajith was thinking about how to solve it, Sujeewa Senasinghe, who is currently playing a huge role in SJB, took the responsibility of solving it. These days, Sujeewa is meeting all the former Urbarn councils, municipal councils and local government councillors in SJB and engaging in a huge program to strengthen them again at the village level. Accordingly, when Sajith handed over the issue related to Bandarigoda to Sujeeva, he decided to meet Bandarigoda and discuss the matter at length. Bandulal explained to Sujeeva how the money issue would seriously affect him in the upcoming elections. Accordingly, Bandulal told Sujeeva that he was not unwilling to give the Ambalangoda seat to Shan and told Sujeeva that he would not abandon SJB or Sajith.
I’ve known Sajith for a long time. My problem the last time was that I needed more money for the election. This time, too, I don’t have any money to spend on elections. If I compete, I might lose. So, no problem, I’ll give Shan my seat and step aside. But I’ll never abandon SJB or Sajit. Bandulal informed Sujeva that he would always stand by Sajith to strengthen the party. As a result, Sujeeva immediately informed Sajith of Bandulal’s situation.
At the same time, an event that Bandulal had never imagined happened. Sajith spoke to Bandulal through Sujeeva and took steps to give a special promise. That is to inform Bandulal that he will take steps to place Bandulal at the top of the national list of the next government that will formed.
‘Bandulal, you made a great sacrifice for the party and me. I will never forget it. I will tell you one today. Next, I will give you all the resources to work for Galle under the government we will form. And I promise you one more. That is the top of the national list that will be appointed under our government and I will bring you to the parliament.”When Sajith said, Bandulal it was an unbelievable surprise for him.
Accordingly, Sajith was able to succeed in the mission of bringing Shan Wijayalal to the party. But Sajith never told anyone about that.
In this way, with the decision of Shan’s arrival in SJB, a face-to-face discussion was held between Sajith and Shan on two occasions very secretly. Sajith planned to release the news of Shan’s joining SJB on the first day of 2024 since the government had already started attacking the SJB-led alliance. Accordingly, Sajith had informed Shan to arrange even the necessary auspicious times for that.
However, the government had received information that Shan was preparing for this kind of political upheaval within 02 to 03 days of the New Year, even though the SJB was working to keep Shan’s case extremely secret. But there many people said that someone like Shan would never join SJB. The heads of the government thought that even if they joined SJB, a person like Shan would not join SJB at all, as the names of several people in Pohottuwa and the Sri Lankan Freedom Party were already being mentioned.
In this way, when Sajith was planning to make a big political revolution on January 1st, around December 30th, Sajith received a special message from another special place. In that message, it was said that former minister Dayashrita Thisera, a son of another powerful political family of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party, has expressed his desire to join Sajith. Accordingly, several people close to Sajith immediately discussed how to manage Dayashrita’s arrival. There, it was the position of everyone that Shan’s turnaround should be planned first, putting Dayashrita’s issue second. Accordingly, Sajith decided to shake up the whole politics by releasing Shan’s twist on Monday, January 1st.
Arrived at Marikkar’s office
By this time S.M. Marikkar had invited Sajith to join him for a New Year morning feast on January 1st, at his Kolonnawa party office. Sajith accepted the invitation, surprised everyone and came to Marikkar’s office with Shan Wijayalal in his vehicle. Seeing Shan too getting out of the car with Sajith, Marikkar could not believe his eyes as Marikkar didn’t know that Shan was joining SJB until that moment. Accordingly, before a moment, the photos of Shan – Sajith – Marikkar together at the New Year’s meal table at the Kollonnawa SJB Party office started to be published on social media networks and websites. At the same time, it was seen how the political bomb of Shan joining the Sajb was ignited.
Sajith also took steps to publicise the news that Shan would be joining SJB in his speech after setting the table for the New Year’s meal. Although no one was aware of this news, we confirmed that this type of political upheaval would occur, and on the night of December 31st, we published extraordinary news implying that a political upheaval will occur on the 1st’.
Meanwhile, the officials of the Opposition Leader’s Office also learned that Sajith had gone with Shan Wijayalal to attend Marikkar’s New Year’s meal before attending the New Year’s meal at the Office of the Leader of the Opposition. Accordingly, they were also very surprised when they heard Shan’s news. Accompanied by Sajith, Shan, arrived at the opposition leader’s office and officially offered the SJB seat of Ambalangoda to Shan after that. At the same time, it was seen that this news was published as ’breaking news’ in all major online media. With this incident of Shan, not only the SLFP, UNP and Pohottuwa but also the SJB zombies who played various games to disrupt the SJB alliance, became very upset and disturbed.
Proposal to Hakeems
Apart from this, this time ‘ inside politics’ column makes another new revelation about these zombies who are waiting to break the SJB alliance. It is about an operation launched by these zombies to remove Rauf Hakeem, Rishad Badiuddin, Mano Ganesan and Palani Digambaram from the SJB Alliance and for them to align with the President. A few of them had launched this operation a few days before New Year’s Eve. There these zombies had told Hakeem, Rishad, Mano and Digambaram that the President is ready to make Sajith the Prime Minister in the future.
Through that, they planned to weaken Sajith and disrupt the currently forming SJB alliance. There, one of the main zombies had directly informed some MPs why Sajith could not go into an alliance with Ranil before forming alliances outside. Accordingly, these zombies had held several rounds of negotiations with President Hakeem and other minor party leaders and organized a meeting between them. All the information in this regard is in the possession of the ‘inside politics’ column, and we are ready to reveal that information to the country at the appropriate time.
After this discussion, the President summoned Rishad, Mano, Digambaram and Hakeem for a highly confidential discussion a few days ago. Although the President organised this discussion very secretly, before going to the relevant discussion, all four of them met Sajith and informed him about this. This group informed Sajith of all the information about how the basis for this discussion was laid, who discussed it with them, who coordinated the relevant discussion, etc. There, Sajith also said that he has no problem with them going to discuss with the President and to listen to what the President has to say.
Discussion with Ranil
Accordingly, it was seen that all four minor party leaders in the SJB Alliance participated in the discussion held with the President. First, the president targeted Hakeem and Rishad and informed them that a large amount of money had been allocated for the development of the east in this year’s budget. The President pointed out that through that, Hakeem and Rishad can do a lot of work in the East. After that, the President talked about plantation issues targeting Digambaram. Digambaram pointed out that so far the government has not fulfilled any of the promises made to the plantation people. Digambaram pointed out to the President that even though the government had promised to give the ownership of a 10-perch piece of land to the plantation people, they had not yet fulfilled that promise. But the President’s side said that there is no vacant land in the plantations to do so and that the plantation owners were unwilling to release those lands. Accordingly, that topic was also seen to be finished without a final decision.
However, after that, entering the topic, the President said that he was ready to work together with the opposition leader Mr. Sajith Premadasa. When the MPs asked how it would happen, the President hinted unofficially that he was ready to ally with Sajith, through which he was ready to give the post of Prime Minister to Sajith.
Accordingly, immediately after the discussion, all these minor party leaders met Sajith and took steps to inform him of all that happened in the discussion. These party leaders informed Sajith of the President’s willingness to form an alliance and the President’s willingness to give the post of Prime Minister to Sajith. Sajith ‘s reply to this was the same as before. It means that he is not ready to join with Ranil to form a government or to get the post of Prime Minister.
Neither I nor SJB will join Ranil at all. That’s for sure because now Ranil has officially joined the Rajapaksa family. We can never unite or govern with those people. But if there is someone who wants to go there, I will not stop any of them. Will there be 10 people left with me, and with those 10 people I will run for the presidential election and the general election as well?’ was the direct response of Sajith.
Along with Sajith’s affirmative answer, Hakeem, Rishad, Mano and Digambaram also clearly said that if Sajith’s position is the same, they will not leave Sajaba at all. These four party leaders also gave a promise to Sajith that their parties will work jointly with the SJB alliance that will be formed under the leadership of Sajith.
Also, there was some discussion among the group regarding the positions in the alliance to be formed in the future. There, Sajith said that there are no individual leaders in this alliance formed under his leadership, and a leadership board will be formed with the participation of all party leaders. Sajith informed everyone that in the future all decisions will be made through the leadership board.
After this incident, Sajith took steps to give a special dinner to all the party leaders who have joined hands with the Samagi Jana Balawega so far. During this dinner, Sajith also exchanged ideas with the party leaders at length regarding the formation of the new alliance. The same game played by the zombies within SJB to sabotage the formation of the new alliance and fish out leaders of the minor parties to the alliance of the President foiled.
In addition to this, these zombies made several statements unsuccessfully to disrupt the alliance Sajith and GL were to form. But Sajith successfully brought those negotiations to an end last week by getting members of the Free Janata Sabha including GL, Dilan, Nalaka Godaheva, and Channa Jayasumana to agree to join this new alliance.
Accordingly, for the first time last week, G.L. and Dylan arrived at the SJB Party office to join a press conference. For the first time the announcement of Sajith as the general candidate of the alliance was made by Dylan. Dilan also emphasized that the alliance will be formed under the leadership of Sajith. This statement made by Dylan for the first time was broadcast as breaking news by the electronic media at that moment because of its uniqueness. Accordingly, it was seen that the game played by the few SJB zombies to disrupt the joining of the MPs GL, Dilan and Godaheva to the SJB Alliance was also a failed attempt.
Aside from that, we’re getting ready to make another special revelation through the ‘inside politics’ column this time. That is, many more special and powerful characters of this type are ready to join the new alliance led by Sajith in the coming days and weeks. According to one of the revelations we made last week, three of the government’s most powerful ministers engaged in a round of highly confidential discussions with Sajith at two locations. This time, we’re saying that talks have already begun about them joining the new alliance, which includes many other strong and clean political figures as well as a large group of professionals. Some of the people on this list are unfathomably powerful. Some characters are stalwarts representing left-wing politics. As a result, within the next few days and weeks, even these strong, unbelievable characters will join Sajith’s new political alliance.
Revealing the zombies
However, we are ready to remind the SJB Party members of one thing. That is to keep an eye on SJB Zombies who are working to disrupt this winning alliance. In the press conferences held by these zombies, be careful about the statements made to disrupt the SJB alliance and discourage the people who are going to gather around it. There is no doubt that they are planning to play some games in the future by issuing statements saying various things such as policies, conditions etc. in the news conferences they conduct. We are also ready to give some warning to the SJB Party to identify them and be careful about them.
As the new alliance led by Sajith continues in this way, the cold war between the president and the millionaire businessman Mr Dhammika Perera regarding the candidacy for the presidential election is seen to be moving forward. Pohottuwa officially announced last week that Dhammika is ready to run for the presidential election, and said that he if is ready to answer the 10 conditions sent by Pohottuwa. At the same time, news was published in the media saying that the president has planned to start the campaign for the presidential election in January and has planned to appoint several committees for that purpose.
As a result of this, we also took steps to find out the truth or falsity of this news. We saw that Mr. Ranil Wickramasinghe, as the President, has not officially held any discussions or appointed any committees regarding the presidential election campaign. According to the information reported to us, the President is ready to decide on whether to contest the presidential election or not, by next March or April. However, it has been seen that some people around the president have already started a series of attacks targeting Dhammika, seeing that the revelation of Dhammika can be a challenge to the President. Last week there were several such attacks on Dhammika, and it was also seen how it was given a lot of publicity through the media. Also, a way of ‘sprouting’ news aimed at Dhammika was seen last week.
Fight commences from Hambanthota
Amidst all this, Dhammika has made plans to unofficially start his presidential campaign on the 10th. It is from Hambantota Tissamaharama, the stronghold of the Rajapaksa in Pohottuwa. Accordingly, there is news that it is planned to get an unofficial start for Dhammika’s presidential campaign by opening a computer school in Tissamaharama on the 10th. It is also said that Dhammika has prepared all arrangements to hold this festival with a larger crowd than the usual festivals.
At the same time, there is news that the people who were in doubt about Dhammika within Pohottuwa made a final decision last week. It has been learned that many Pohottuwa seniors who were on the fence about whether to support Ranil or Dhammika when the presidential election heats up have held discussions with Dhammika and agreed to support him as of last week. It is reported that many seniors from Pohottuwa have been waiting to be appointed as government ministers but have not received have pledge to Dhammika during the discussions that took place.
Basil too at work
Among all this, Basil, who left for America after holding the party conference, is also getting information about the political upheavals happening in Sri Lanka daily and Joining Zoom and WhatsApp discussions with Pohottuwa authorities almost every day. It has also been learned that Basil has taken several other special decisions during the Zoom discussions held last week. One of the decisions is not to accept any ministerial post given by the President from now on. The first task done by Pohottuwa after Ranil was appointed as the President by majority vote in Parliament was to submit a list of names of Pohottuwa’s seniors for ministerial positions to the President. But even though more than a year has passed, the President has not yet acted to fulfil that request. Accordingly, Basil had decided last week not to accept any ministerial position offered to Pohottuwa from now on. Also, it was decided that some ministerial positions could be given to Pohottuwa MPs, but they should be rejected.
Basil has also given some hints to the Pohottu MPs in these Zoom and WhatsApp discussions. It is said that the government will have to face an extremely critical situation by next April and May. Basil estimates that due to some decisions that the government has implemented, many problems will have to be faced by next April and May. Basil has also given a strong hint in these discussions that the party should be ready to take a tough decision if such an opportunity arises. Basil, who has informed me that he will prepare the necessary background for that after he arrives in Sri Lanka, has also learned that many responsibilities have been assigned to the seniors of the party in this regard. Inside Politics column also has news that after Basil arrived in Sri Lanka, he is planning to officially start the presidential or general election campaign.
Aliraja to contest for presidency?
Aliraja Subhaskaran is a figure who has been frequently discussed in politics as well as in the business sector of this country in the past. Many groups including Mr. Wimal Weerawansa accused Aliraja, who is considered to be a strong figure in the Tamil Diaspora, saying that Aliraja was a friend of the LTTE and that he was handling the money of the LTTE. But in the past, Aliraja visited Sri Lanka on several occasions, and Aliraja also owned the Jaffna team in the Sri Lanka Premier League.
Also, once when the President went to London, the President met Aliraja. At that time, the media had reported that Mr Ruwan Wijewardena was also present at the meeting. There, many parties said that Aliraja started negotiations regarding the purchase of Telecom and Lanka Hospital, which the government has prepared for sale.
However, some media took steps to report special news about Aliraja last week. It means that Aliraja is ready to run as a Dravidian candidate for the presidential election. It was also said that Aliraja had met the former president Mrs. Chandrika Kumaratunga in this regard.
Accordingly, during our investigation in this regard, we found out that the story of Aliraja running for the presidential election is completely false. But it was also reported that the information that there was a meeting between Chandrika and Aliraja is true. Although there is no information regarding whether this meeting was held in London or Sri Lanka, it was confirmed that a meeting took place between the two. There is still no information about whether they talked about a business deal in this meeting, or whether they talked about supporting the candidate running for the next presidential election.
No talks about the presidency
The President spent last weekend relaxing in cold Nuwara Eliya. At the same time, a circular issued by the government said that the public servants should give a pledge when starting their duties in the New Year, and all the institutions should contact the Presidential Secretariat through Zoom technology, and after that, the President will be instructed to address the public servants through Zoom technology. Due to this circular issued before the New Year, all the government institutions were ready for it, and it was also seen how the necessary arrangements to connect with the President’s Secretariat through Zoom technology were made in the ministerial conference rooms.
Accordingly, last Monday, all civil servants were contacted by Zoom technology to give the pledge live, just as it was announced by the circular. After that, everyone was ready to hear the President’s live speech as it was in the circular.
But the most special event to be seen here was the action taken by the Presidential Secretariat to suspend the live Zoom connection immediately after the pledge. Accordingly, the President’s speech was not held, and no reason was given by the Presidential Secretariat. However, it was also seen that the President continued to stay at the President’s Office and participated in many official activities that day. For example, on that day, the president met the committee appointed to look into cricket, chaired by Ali Sabri, and accepted their report. But what happened to the President’s speech to public servants through Zoom technology is still a mystery to everyone.
Meanwhile, the President had arranged to leave for Jaffna last Friday. There, the President is planned to spend 4 days in the Northern Province, joining the political affairs of the North. However, the most special event to be seen here is the visit of Thalapathy Vijay, an extremely popular South Indian actor, to Jaffna these few days. Thalapathy Vijay is coming to the North to participate in some night shoots of his latest movie ‘Talapathy 68’. Because the people of the north are fans of Thalapathy Vijay, even now, almost everywhere in the north, celebrations are held to celebrate the arrival of Thalapathy Vijay. However, it is still too early to say whether a meeting between the President and Thalapathy Vijay will take place in the North.
Meeting on the 9th
From the beginning, we reported information about the new alliance started by Mr. Nimal Lanza, who works very closely with the President, through this column. There we said that the talks of this alliance were first started at the official residence of former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at Malalasekara Mawatha, and then a new office was opened at Lake Drive in Rajagiriya. Also, although it was mentioned that 60 to 70 MPs would join this alliance initially, we said there that several MPs would not join the alliance. We reported that a special discussion in this regard was organized a few months ago at Mr Anura Priyadarshana Yapa’s house in Kurunegala, and only ministers Nimal Lanza and Nalin Fernando were present.
However, a ceremony was held at Lanza’s Rajagiriya office to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Even though it was announced that many ministers would join, at the end only the faces of Mr Anura Priyadarshana and Mr. Priyankara Jayaratne could be seen. The other special happening was that Priyankara Jayaratne was present at this meeting when he was holding talks for an alliance with another party. Accordingly, when Priyankara and Lanza were asked about the other ministers, Lanza said that the first group meeting of the alliance was scheduled to be held on the 9th, and a large number of people were expected to participate in it.
After this meeting, many people called Priyankara Jayaratne and asked him about the details of the meeting. Priyankara said to all those who spoke that another meeting was planned on the 9th and that he would take a decision in the future after looking at the situation of that meeting. However, in this discussion, Lanza directly said that he has started the presidential election campaign for the president from today, targeting the next presidential election.