Blood is thicker in politics: UPFA nominations a family affair


Despite the governments’ assurance that no relatives of politicians would be allowed to contest the upcoming provincial elections, several of them have received the ruling party nominations. Health Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva had earlier said the decision to keep relatives out of the provincial elections was aimed at encouraging young politicians to enter active politics.

However, the UPFA nominations lists show several relatives of ruling party politicians have received nominations to contest the September 8 elections for the North Central, Sabaragamuwa and Eastern Provincial Councils:
Here are some candidates who are close family members of UPFA stalwarts.

Prabath Mahesh de Alwis – son-in-law of Minister John Seneviratne.
Kanchana Jayarathna – husband of Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi.
Parakrama Athauda – son-in-law of Senior Minister Athauda Senaviratna.
Tharaka Balasuriya – son of Minister Jagath Balasuriya.
Kalyani Karaliyadda – wife of Minister Tissa Karaliyadda.
H.M. Ranjith – brother of Minister H. M. Chandrasena.
Harsha Siyambalapitiya – cousin of Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya.
Rudrakumar Gnanabhaskaran – sister of deputy minister Vinayagamurti Muralitharan.
Ranjith Bandara – brother-in-law of Deputy Minister Premalal Jayasekara.
H.R. Sarani Dushmantha – son of Deputy Minister H. R. Mithrapala.
Chamila Dissanayake – son of Deputy Minister Lalith Dissanayake.
Jinadari Padmasiri – daughter of Parliamentarian Y. G. Padmasiri.
Indika Muthukumarana – daughter of Parliamentarian Sarath Chandrasiri Muthukumarana.
Explaining the shift in the Government’s policy, Minister John Seneviratne told the Sunday Times yesterday that although they made such an announcement earlier, they could not reject candidates who were relatives of the ruling party politicians point blank. “If they have some history of working for the people and have been in politics for some time, then they are eligible to be a candidate,” he said.

“But we will reject applications from relatives of politicians if they decide to contest suddenly without any political background,” the minister said.

In another controversial move, the UPFA’s Trincomalee politician Ariyawati Galapatti who has been remanded for contempt of court has also been given nominations to contest the Eastern Provincial Council elections.

Former public servants, woman refugee in the fray | Eastern Provincial Council election

From Sinniah Gurunathan, Trinco corr.

Among the candidates contesting the forthcoming election to the Eastern Provincial Council (EPC) from the Trincomalee district, two have served the Eastern Provincial Council in various capacities till their retirement, while another is a Tamil woman refugee from Sampur.
The three are Tamil National Alliance (TNA) chief candidate C.Thandayuthapani who retired from the post of Deputy Secretary to the Provincial Ministry of Education. Earlier he held the post of Provincial Director of Education in the Eastern Province. Later he was promoted to the post of Deputy Secretary of the Provincial Education Ministry.

The other candidate on the TNA list is Dr. Indurani Rajadhramarajah who retired from the post of Provincial Director of Indigenous Medicine. Before that she had served in several capacities in the Provincial Department of Indigenous Medicine.
The third is Ms. Pathmanathan Pathmalatha who had been an inmate in the Kaddaiparichchan welfare centre where displaced Sampur refugees are staying. Her party leader Dr.Vigneswaran had been holding the post of senior advisor in the EPC till its dissolution. He said five women including Ms. Padmalatha are contesting the EPC election from his party.

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