JHU activist and Western Provincial Council member Udaya Gammanpila says Prime Minister D.M.Jayaratne should step down from his post as he is unable to conduct himself in a manner that upholds the dignity of the office he holds and is way beyond retirement age.
“While there is a retirement age for public and private sector employees, there is no such requirement for politicians and sportspersons. But most sportspersons themselves realize that it is time to go and step down. Politicians too should do the same and leave before they are forced out of office by the people,” Mr. Gammanpila said.
He maintained that while the JHU, which is a constituent party of the ruling United People Freedom Alliance (UPFA) has not officially requested the 75-year-old Prime Minister to step down, the Party has been critical of some of the comments made by the Premier.
One of these was the Prime Minister’s decision to include non-Buddhists in the committee appointed to organize the celebrations for the up coming Sambuddha Jayanthi.
“We welcome non-Buddhists celebrating the Sambuddha Jayanthi but it has to be done voluntarily. By appointing them to a committee, they are being forced to take part in a Buddhist activity and this could be perceived as a violation of their religious rights,” Mr.Gammanpila said.
Meanwhile a spokesman for the Prime Minister said that the Premier did not want to comment on a statement made by a provincial council member but hinted that the comment was personally motivated.