President Maithripala Sirisena has ordered Governor of the Central Province, President's Counsel Maithri Gunaratne and Governor of the Southern Province Keerthi Tennekoon to resign from their posts last night (02).
Sources further said that the President, who is scheduled to travel to Cambodia on an official tour on Tuesday (06), has asked Gunaratne and Tennekoon to meet him on Monday (05) morning.
It is learnt that the President's decision to call for their resignations was due to the complaints he had received about their actions from several seniors of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP).
The actions of both Gunaratne and Tennekoon were criticised by several SLFP seniors at the party's Central Committee (CC) meeting held recently. At the meeting, the President's attention was drawn to the fact that these two provincial Governors were working only to uplift their personal images and were sidelining SLFP members as well as party organisers in these two provinces.
Maithri's kithul toddy project
A senior SLFPer in the Matale district had pushed for Gunaratne's removal as the Central Province Governor.
However, it is learnt that the respective SLFP senior was angered by Gunaratne's move to issue licenses to manufacture kithul toddy in the area since it had an adverse impact on the SLFP senior's arrack business being carried out in the same area.
Also, MP S.B. Dissanayake and SLFP Nuwara Eliya organiser, Roshan Gunewardena have complained against Gunaratne to the President.
Amaraweera opposes Keerthi
Meanwhile, General Secretary of the UNited People's Freedom Allaince 9UPFA), MP Mahinda Amaraweera and several SLFP oraganisers in te Southern Provice have complained to the President against Tennakoon. They have claimed that Tennekoon was working in a manner that was beneficial to Southern organisers of the "flower bud" party (Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna - SLPP).
Meanwhile, the growing dissentions amongst SLFP membership against MP Dilan Perera's actions and his role as a spokesperson of the SLFP resulted in his father, Uva Province Governor Marshal Perera resigning from his post last week.
Only a transfer
Nevertheless, whenÂ The LeaderÂ inquired from Southern Province Governor Tennekoon if he had been asked by the President to resign from his post, he said that he had not being informed of such a presidential directive.
However, he further noted that he had heard rumors to the effect that he was to be re-appointed as the Central Province Governor while Gunaratne is to be re-appointed as the Southern Province Governor.
Gunaratne meanwhile has informed a Presidential Advisor that he would not accept any positions in future if he is asked to resign from his current post.