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“Will implement law to the letter”
“A weakling cannot do the job”
“All wrongdoers will be punished”

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is contesting the upcoming General Election as a United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) candidate from the Kurunegala District, pledged to punish even his sons and brothers if they are found to have violated the law. Rajapaksa made this statement during an interview with The Nation conducted at his residence in Tangalle.

When queried whether he believed the law and order situation in the country had deteriorated during his presidency, and whether this was one of the reasons he had lost his reelection bid, Rajapaksa pointed out he had a war to fight during his Presidency and that he was more focused on the war and development.

“If I tried to take on all these things together I would have achieved nothing.  Maybe that’s what happened to my predecessors.  Maybe people didn’t understand that it is impossible to do everything at once,” he said.

While acknowledging the failure to implement the law against certain persons had cost him in the end, Rajapaksa maintained that during the past six months, the United National Party (UNP) had showed that it could not deliver on law and order.

“What we need now is a strong leader with a clear vision.  I will put all efforts to ensure that the law is upheld.  I will not allow anyone to play with the law, whether it is a minister, an MP, a friend, a relative or anyone else.  Even if one of my brothers or any of my sons violates the law they will be punished according to the law,” he insisted.

He also said the younger generation had not experienced UNP administrations. “When they heard the word “Good Governance,” they took it seriously. If they have received a bit of experience of how the UNP have treated the youth, they would never have made that decision.  Now they have that experience.  They know now.  So they will take this into account on August 17,” Rajapaksa said.