Green light for DNF

By Our Political Editor

The United National Front (UNF) leaders have decided to form the proposed political alliance – the Democratic National Front (DNF) – before the end of this month, The Sunday Morning reliably learnt.

The meeting of the UNF leaders that was held yesterday (17) ended with the political party leaders reaching a consensus on the proposed amendments to the draft constitution of the DNF.

All members who attended the meeting had reached a consensus on the proposed amendments, a senior UNF Minister told The Sunday Morning.

The Minister said the leaders agreed on five key amendments to the DNF Constitution.

They are as follows: The alliance office will be located at an independent venue (not the UNP headquarters Sirikotha or the proposed location at Havelock Road); the alliance secretary would be nominated by the UNP; founder members of the alliance are to be included in the Leadership Council; a political party with even one parliamentarian could join the alliance and be represented in the Leadership Council; and there will be no impact on UNP organisers since there will be separate alliance organisers appointed to each electorate.

It was further decided that the United National Party (UNP) would decide the presidential candidate and then present the name for ratification of the DNF.

UNF leaders Ministers Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, Champika Ranawaka, Rauff Hakeem, Mano Ganesan, Arjuna Ranatunga, Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, Mangala Samaraweera, Kabir Hashim, and Ravi Karunanayake were among those who participated at yesterday’s meeting.

Meanwhile, a group of UNP parliamentarians signed a letter to be handed over to Party Leader Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, requesting him to immediately convene a joint meeting of the UNP Working Committee and the parliamentary group to finalise the party’s presidential candidate. UNP Minister Sujeewa Senasinghe said the letter had been handed over to Party Chairman Minister Kabir Hashim to be handed over to the party leadership.

However, Hashim since last Friday (16), had made several attempts to meet with Wickremesinghe, who has in turn informed the Chairman that he was busy with prior engagements.