SLFP: 62 Not Out
By Janaka Alahapperuma
Sep 4, 2013
The 62nd anniversary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) was held under the patronage of President Mahinda Rajapaksa in Kurunegala on 02 September. The 62nd Anniversary commemoration rally has been organized in parallel to support the North, Central and Wayamba provincial council elections at the Maligapitiya ground. It was also the commencement of the maiden election rallies of the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) for the upcoming Provincial Council polls.

Massive crowds descended on the Maligapitiya grounds in Kurunegala from all four corners of the country and the entire Kurunegala transformed into blue as the crowds began approaching the ground in processions led by ministers, parliamentarians and Provincial Council election candidates.

The General Secretary of the SLFP Minister Maithripala Sirisena said the SLFP has passed 62 years of excellence by protecting integrity and independency constantly. The party has rendered several revolutionary services such as strengthening local economy and production process, developing free health service and welfare of the working community. After 1956 election victory, the Golden Era of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party is the current period under the leadership of President Rajapaksa. He further added that under the leadership of the President the country was able to eliminate the brutal terrorism, ending the three decades of war and since then there is no person in the country capable of challenging his leadership. The minister further noted that the present government has carried out huge development activities for the benefit of not only the current generation but also for the benefit of children who are to be born in the future.

Addressing the 62nd anniversary, President Rajapaksa said that the government will not bow down to any foreign forces or to local conspirators. The President also requested every citizen of the country to join with the government to safeguard the democracy in the country. He further said the Kurunegala district has a special significance to the SLFP as it was in this district that the first conference of the party was conducted. The President has also pointed out that the SLFP has been able to walk along with the leftist forces of the country and to appreciate such parties. He also explained how the SLFP was committed to build a local economy by nationalising the harbour, lands and transportation services.

The President said, a dictator is a ruler who does not conduct polls and works according to his own agendas but this government has restored democracy and taken steps to hold elections. Therefore, no one can accuse this government of being a dictatorship. He said it is not his problem of having a weaker Opposition and a poor leadership against the government. It is also no secret that therefore certain powerful foreign and local elements are trying to create divisions between the communities and religions to bring anti government groups to power and bring this country under their heel. They should realise that this government has the blessings of the masses who love this country and its culture and values who therefore would never allow them to succeed, said President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Addressing the 62nd annual convention the President further emphasised that the government treated all religions alike but that Buddhism had been provided with Constitutional safeguards and the government could not do anything about that.

Senior Minister S.B. Navinna delivered the welcome speech and Senior Minister A.H.M. Fowzie, Ministers Patali Champika Ranawaka, Dinesh Gunawardena and Vasudeva Nanayakkara also addressed the gathering. SLFP General Secretary and Minister Maithripala Sirisena and many Party representatives also joined in the anniversary commemoration.

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