The Sunday Leader

“Public Want Mahinda Back” — Dinesh Gunawardena

Since the recent Regime Change on 9th January 2015, the general opinion was in favour of President Maithripala Sirisena and his policy of cleansing the country of bribery and corruption. However there now is a certain level of uncertainty among the people as to whether the present government can in fact keep to their promises?  In an interview with The Sunday Leader, leader of the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna Dinesh Gunawardena said that the UNP led alliance has lost its credibility. He said that the public sentiments were amply manifested during last Wednesday’s rally at Nugegoda held in support of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, where the people gathered in large numbers to express their support to the former president and the UPFA alliance. Gunawardena also dismissed the opinion that the people who were seen at the rally were transported to the venue in buses from several locations. – Excerpts of the interview:


By Camelia Nathaniel


Q: On what basis are you calling for former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to be the Prime Ministerial candidate, especially when he lost the last elections?

A:  Mahinda Rajapaksa has to consent to be a candidate for any post in the future but it is the peoples wish that he returns to politics and lead the people who gave him over 5.7 million votes. He is the only leader who is capable of leading the UPFA alliance to victory and forming a government.


Q: Can Mahinda Rajapaksa obtain the support of the minorities who had voted against him in the last election?

A. Of course.  There is a great percentage of minorities who have been voting for Rajapaksa and it will increase because the public are already fed up with all the false promises given by the UNP and the alliance. Day by day their lies are being exposed. So whether it is Sinhala, Tamil or Muslim all are affected by the falsehood of the current UNP led alliance and all their false promises.


Q: Do you see a split in the UPFA as a result of your decision to gather support for a candidate who has not been formally endorsed by the SLFP?

A:  Candidates are not formally announced until elections are at hand and that’s how our country’s politics has always been. Hence the SLFP is very clearly in line with President Mahinda Rajapaksa who is clearly the most popular political leader in existence today.


Q:  Does your group (those calling for Rajapaksa to be the Prime Ministerial candidate) support calls for a national unity government after the next general elections?

A: The UPFA is our alliance and we are constituent members of the UPFA. Our mandate is very clear to form a government of its own, and we certainly will be able to achieve that. Any broad alliance of anyone wanting to join the UPFA program has always been welcome as we have done before and in the future too. Hence the question of a national unity government or a UNP / SLFP government does not arise.


Q: Considering that you had a huge turnout at the Nugegoda rally last Wednesday, what is your next move?

A:  As we announced our first move is to give the UPFA an active people’s movement so that we can move forward than being misled by some members who are aligning themselves with the UNP for which the UPFA voters never voted them to parliament to act in this manner. So our movement has drawn overwhelming and unprecedented support  not only from  the constituent members but a bulk of the SLFPers  joined the rally by very clearly declaring that the only path is for the UPFA to stand on its own for which we will work towards as a people’s movement.

9 Comments for ““Public Want Mahinda Back” — Dinesh Gunawardena”

  1. Namal Perera

    From what we see, the corrupt lawless Banana Republic, slowly but surely returning to former Democratic Sri Lanka. Only CROOKS and CRIMINALS would welcome the return of the former. Any one with a pea nut of a brain would want the former self appointed KING CORRUPT to return to power. Citizens can very clearly see how he robbed the Country and served himself, immediate and extended families and the criminals associated with them. If any one want him even near the Legislature, must be insane.

  2. saman hewawasam

    NO, NO and NOOOOOOO………..

  3. Percy

    More than the Public it is the corrupt politician who need Mahinda back because they cannot thrive without a Head of State who shield the corrupt by having their files locke in a Drawer. Misery brought on the people by large scale corruption is not a concern for them andb they never educate public about same. Percy

  4. Frank


    1)In True Democracy, looser still hold chunk of voter base. However, a lost is a lost. He has been rejected by majority of the Srilankans who are eligible to vote. If you split that majority of Sinhalese voted for him, then there is a valid reason why Tamils and Muslims need a separate country. Mahinda is not a leader for United Srilanka but a divided fractured Sinhalanka.

    2) Mahinda can only obtain support from selected minorities who will benefit from or benefited from his corrupted government. No self respecting minorities have any trust on Mahinda’s governance.

    3) The writing is on the wall. Mahinda is not a welcomed candidate by many senior ministers. Nimal Sripala is already chosen to be the candidate by SLFP in the rank and file, except some die hard fans of Mahinda who benefited from his corrupt deals. For UPFA ( sans SLFP’s majority) Mahinda is the candidate. It seems UPFA will form a separate entity from SLFP and there will be a voter split among the SLFP base.

    4) Nugegoda rally is not a historic event. It is just another herds of people from out of town buried in private buses.


    You are very correct sir, but unfortunately not the majority of them. May be majority of Sinhalese, but not the majority of Sri Lankan citizens. Every vote , weather it is Tamil or Sinhalese, count as one.

  6. L. Perera

    You want Mahinda back for your survival. Not public want him. You are the worst character who gold plated all wrong doings by the previous man though you declare you as a ‘Samajawadi’

  7. Priyal Dr Silva

    Rubbish !

  8. mrgunawardena you are most communal politician enough is enough .please go home you are a bribe master

  9. senaka de alvis

    Son of boralugoda lion is a donkey, (boralugoda buruwa)

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