Wrangling over ministerial portfolios between the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the United National Party (UNP) continued well into the end of last week. Both the SLFP and UNP confirmed that they have not finalized on the breakdown of the ministries for their respective parties.UNP sources confirmed that there are likely to be about 45 Ministers in the new Cabinet. The SLFP is likely to get between 10-15 positions with the rest going to the UNP.
General Secretary of Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Duminda Dissanayake speaking to The Nation mentioned that the party has not yet finalized as to the appointment of Cabinet Ministers in the new government.
“We have not yet made any final decisions regarding the matter,” he said.
However, Dissanayake confirmed that the swearing in ceremony of the ministers will be held on September 4. UNP Galle District parliamentarian Gayantha Karunathilaka also mentioned the swearing in ceremony will most likely take place on September 4.
Meanwhile, the SLFP’s Central Committee met on Friday evening to discuss the party’s decision to accept ministerial positions in the new government. A decision on the post of Opposition Leader was also due to be taken at this meeting. However, immediate details regarding the decisions taken were unavailable at the time this edition went to press.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the SLFP and the UNP was signed on August 21 to form a ‘National Government’. It was signed by the SLFP then Acting General Secretary Duminda Dissanayake and UNP General Secretary Kabir Hashim.