Political parties in our country will have to face a severe leadership crisis in the future. For an example, who will be the UNP’s leader after Ranil? Who will it be for SLFP after Maithri? In the JVP, no leader is apparent after Anura. SJB too, is the same. Sajith is the one and only leader.

Only the SLPP is without a leadership issue. It has Mahinda. Then come Basil, Namal, Shasheendra. If needed, there are standbys like Yoshitha, Chichi in readiness. The SLPP is without a leadership issue because it is a party formed for a single family. Someone from the family is there to be the leader. At worst, grandma Daisy will fill it.

Why do parties actually have such leadership crises? The main reason is the incumbent party leadership has not formed a second generation of leaders. Even in leftist parties, there are no leadership personalities after Tissa, Dew and Vasu. Those parties have become insipid along with their leftist ideology.




J.R. is in the lead of leadership who formed second level leaderships. Ratey Raala disagrees with J.R.’s politics, but the truth should be said. J.R.’s UNP had a second level leadership recognized by the country, such as Lalith Athulathmudali, Gamini Dissanayake, R. Premadasa, Ranil Wickremesinghe, Gamini Jayasuriya, Ronnie de Mel…… and the list goes on. All were real talents.

Then comes Rohana Wijeweera, who built a second generation of leaders in leftist politics. He played that role even when his party was banned. Upatissa Gamanayake, Saman Piyasiri Fernando, Shantha Bandara, Sumith Athukorale, Somawansa Amarasinghe, Nishmi…… there were hundreds more. They too, were talented.

Both J.R. and Wijeweera did not get alarmed by individual figures. Despite being in different political camps, they were selfless enough to build a next generation of leaders who were capable of even outperforming them. To do that, J.R. had a position of privilege. But, Wijeweera did that by sacrificing everything and with undaunted courage.

There was a generation nurtured by the Bandaranaikes, but the SLFP leaders later on did not bring them forward. Chandrika did not create a new generation of politicians, but did not destroy the aspiring leaders either. Under her, there were Mahinda Rajapaksa, Mangala Samaraweera, Maithripala Sirisena, Lakshman Kadirgamar and the like.

After J.R., Premadasa became the UNP leader and destroyed the aspiring leaders in the party. He went after Lalith and Gamini. Only a few including Ranil escaped him. Premadasa waged an internal battle to be the leader after J.R.  Unfortunately for the UNP, he was given the leadership. His son Sajith did the same later on. He waged a struggle against Ranil’s leadership. J.R. and Premadasa were able to bring about their transfers of power without dividing the party. But, Sajith and Ranil couldn’t. That was because Ranil was adamant that Sajith would not be the leader even if the UNP became divided.

In the end, Sajith broke away from the UNP to form the SJB. That confirmed the saying ‘like father like son.’ Sajith attacked the party he had left and all its figures. Everybody knows Patali intended to join the SJB before he formed the 43 Brigade. But, Sajith became afraid of Patali. He even became afraid of Welgama. Today, he has sidelined Fonseka. He will lay his hands on Harsha next – mark Ratey Raala’s words. Sajith did two things wrong here. He created a leadership vacuum in the UNP by flushing out its leaders created by Ranil.  Then, he ventured into politics of creating a ring of servants by nullifying their political personalities. That led both the UNP and the SJB to a serious leadership crisis.

If Sajith gains power, he and his lady Jalani will rule this country. Ranil will lead the UNP for the next five or six years at least. That cannot be shaken. Now, Ranil has a trouble-free UNP. Sajith has a SJB full of trouble.  Ranil cannot confine himself to the UNP in this situation. That is so because he will contest the next presidential election not as the candidate of the UNP, but as the common candidate. But, a strong UNP is important for Ranil.

Then comes the leadership issue for the UNP.

The video in Politi Call social media channel below gives part two of ‘Ratey Raala’ political analysis posted by political analyst and social activist Priyanjith Vitharana in his facebook page.


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