Mahinda Vs Maithripala ( Head to Head )

By  J.Yogaraj ,   Senior Journalist , Announcer ( S L B C )

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In what could be described as one of the most decisive ‘Political coups’ the country has witnessed, Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) General Secretary and Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena said he would contest President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the upcoming presidential election.

This is considered as the major turnaround in Sri Lankan politics. I would say,

It is big as tsunami in political terms.

It is high time , we should know these 2 characters as the president election is fixed on 8th January 2015. So the common candidate is announced. But we need to wait and see whether there will any other common candidates, the nominations will be closed on 8th December 2014.

If we look at these 2 characters ( Mahinda Vs Maithripala ) ,

MR- image 1Maithripala - image 1

Both names start with ‘M’. Both names are well related to Buddhism. Both are from villages ( MR from Ambanthota and Maithripala from polannaruwa).Both are in their sixties. They are married and have children. Both are from SLFP , big stalwarts from Sri Lanka Freedom Party. Both did not bother about west and English language, but MR has gained some good knowledge in English as well as in Tamil.

MR became the Member of Parliament in 1970 and Maithripala became a member in 1989.

MR was a minister of labour, then minister of Fisheries development , became the opposition leader , then the prime minister and finally the president of this country.

But Maithripala had opportunities  to hold ministerial portfolios only.

MR increased the SLFP MPs from 57 to 128 in parliament. Also he brought the UPFA toll to 162 ( more than 2/3 majority – historical event )

MR eliminated the 3 decade long war and brought honorable peace.

MR pushed a rapid development just after the end of hostilities. The development includes Road network, highways, Air Port (Mattala ),Port ( Magampura ) , urban development and many more. The economic growth for the lats 2 years remained in 7.2% which the highest in the south Asian countries.The inflation rate remained in one digit which is around 5.1 – 7.1 during the last 2 years.

MR had enough experience in facing many powerful personalities in the world.He  faced the most powerful vociferous person , the leader of LTTE V.Prabaharan in the battle field. MR defeated him in all means. Maithripala will look like a pawn when compared to prabaharan. Praba has a good face outlook compared to Maithripala, well-built and strong determined person. Still praba lost the battle to MR.

Prabaharan - image 1

On the other side, maithripala promised that he will hand over the PM post to UNP leader Ranil Wickramasinghe. That will be a executive PM post. But we wander how can it be done without 2/3 majority and referendum. Does Maithripla has 2/3 majority in parliament? Maithri said he will abolish executive presidency in 100 days. But can he do it without 2/3 majority? Similarly Can he abolish 18th Amendment?Even , CBK came to power saying that she will abolish executive presidency in 150 days.The difference between CBK and Maithripala is the number of days. The underlying fact is that once you come to power, you do not like to give it up. I personally do not think that Maithripala will do away with executive presidency neither he will hand over the EP to Ranil Wickramasinghe neither he will make Ranil as PM.

The real beneficiary from this mischap is Ranil, because he is going to get the prime minister post without facing the is not a simple PM post , but it will be executive PM post. We need wait and see whether people in this country allow this to happen or not.

If he is against executive presidency , then he should have done it long time before when chandrika was the president , why he did not do so ? Do you mean to say Executive presidency is for Chandrika and not for MR ?  When Chandrika was the president she dragged appointing MR as prime minister due to her personal reasons. Similarly she delayed giving the opposition leader’s post and naming MR as presidential candidate in 2005 presidential election. At that time due to frustration and disappointment, MR never tried crossing over or making himself the common candidate.

CBK- image 1

Maithripala spoke about religions but never spoke about its protection. In this country people have realized that MR is the one and only person who can save Buddhists.

Already SF ( Sarath Fonseka ) has revealed that he was provoked by Parliamentatrian Wijeyadasa Rajpapksa that he can win the 2010 election although the real statistics showed MR win. Similarly this maithripala got a wijeyadasa rajpakasa in the name of Sarath Fonseka now. SF recently commended the Maithripala sirisena for defecting from the government.

Maithripala did a judas act

Maithripala Sirisena had a nice dinner with President, the previous night and then turned his back next day to show his treacherous work.Actually he had  egg hoppers during the dinner. Now we have to raise our doubts that whoever has egg hoppers the previous night might show his back the next day. But Disciple Judas did a different act against Jesus Christ. Judas did the betrayal for 30 silver coins. Maithripala did a worse thing than Judas.Because we understand when Judas realized that he did a sin, immediately he suicide himself by hanging.But here Maithripala did not do that. Famous Scholar and writer of “ Political Grammar” Ivo Jennins mentioned about the 7 characteristics about a good political leader. Outlook, speech, conflict handling, management, use of words and many other features are there. When you compare these features , you may find MR has more points than Maithripala.

Unpredictable election manifesto – abolish presidency in 100 days – says Maithripala Sirisena

I will abolish the executive presidency within 100 days; Ranil Wickremasinghe would be the prime minister” , Maithripala Sirisena stated.

Health Minister and SLFP General Secretary Maithripala Sirisena recently declared that he would be the common candidate of the Opposition at the next presidential election to be held on January 8 next year.

Addressing the media at the New Town Hall, Colombo Minister Sirisena said that he had sacrificed all positions and privileges for the sake of the country and its people. He was flanked by former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, Education Services Minister Duminda Dissanayake, Deputy Minister of Buddasasana M. K. A. D. S. Gunawardena, UPFA National List MP Prof. Rajiva Wijesinghe. UPFA MP who joined the UNP on Thursday Wasantha Senanayake also joined with Minister Sirisena and Democratic National Alliance MP Arjuna Ranatunga.

Ms Kumaratunga said, wiping tears, that the she had been forced out of the SLFP before she could hand the party to President Rajapaksa properly. She said she would not hold any positions in the alliance being forged to defeat President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Minister Sirisena commenced his speech quoting from the Dhammapada to stress the need for prompt action to avoid regret.

He promised that the executive presidency would be abolished within 100 days of his election as President and UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe appointed Prime Minister of the next government. The 17th amendment to the Constitution would be reintroduced and the 18th Amendment which enabled the President to seek more than two terms besides having other draconian features abolished, he said.

But the main question remains as Can Maithripala do this ? it is possible according to present constitution system ? If maithripala is against executive presidency & 18th Amendment , why did he vote in favor 18th amendment in parliament ? if he is against executive presidency , then he should have gone against CBK when she was holding this post ? this clearly shows maithripala is acting on imotions and personal grudges. If he has a conflict with MR , he has to sort it out peacefully. Instead he he should not have selected this method to expose an impossible election manifesto where the people have understood this situation very clearly.

Head to Head – History count

President Rajapaksa


Assumed office
19 November 2005
Ratnasiri Wickremanayake
D. M. Jayaratne



Assumed office
19 November 2005
Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayake
D. M. Jayaratne
Preceded by Chandrika Kumaratunga
13th Prime Minister of Sri Lanka
In office
6 April 2004 – 19 November 2005
President Chandrika Kumaratunga
Preceded by Ranil Wickremasinghe
Succeeded by Ratnasiri Wickremanayake
Leader of the Opposition
In office
6 February 2002 – 2 April 2004
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe
Preceded by Ratnasiri Wickremanayake
Succeeded by Ranil Wickremasinghe
Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources
In office
Minister of Labour
In office
Member of the Sri Lankan Parliament
for Hambantota
In office
15 February 1989 – 19 November 2005
Member of the Sri Lankan Parliament
for Beliatta
In office
27 May 1970 – 21 July 1977
Preceded by D.P. Atapattu
Succeeded by Ranjit Atapattu
11th Chairperson-in-office of the Commonwealth of Nations
Assumed office
15 November 2013
Head Elizabeth II
Preceded by Tony Abbott
Personal details
Born Percy Mahendra Rajapaksa
18 November 1945 (age 69)
Weerakatiya, Southern ProvinceBritish Ceylon
(now Sri Lanka)
Nationality Sri Lankan
Political party Sri Lanka Freedom Party
Other political
United People’s Freedom Alliance
Spouse(s) Shiranthi Rajapaksa
(nee Wickremesinghe)
Children Namal
Alma mater Richmond College
Nalanda College Colombo
Thurstan College
Sri Lanka Law College
Profession Politician, Lawyer
Religion Theravada Buddhism[1]


Maithripala Sirisena

Maithripala Sirisena
Minister of Mahaweli Development
In office
Minister of River Basin &
Rajarata Development
Minister of Agricultural Development
& Agrarian Services
Minister of Health
In office
Member of the Sri Lanka Parliament
for Polonnaruwa District
Assumed office
Personal details
Born 3 September 1951 (age 63)
Political party Sri Lanka Freedom Party
Spouse(s) Jayanthi Pushpa Kumari
Residence 417 Ambaraluwa South,
Weliweriya, Sri Lanka.
Occupation Politician
Religion Buddhist


Source : Wikipedia

 When you get angry with a person, you should always think twice on how to throw words. When you throw words in public media , you cannot get it back. Therefore, it is important to control our feelings even in difficult times. We should keep the head and heart separately and work. If we give more value to heart, head will not work. This is a golden advice where each and every politician should keep in mind.





Senior Journalist

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