President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday called upon all patriotic forces to unite under one umbrella to find a lasting solution to the current national problem by setting aside all other agendas.
Addressing the SLFP`s 17th national convention at Maharagama the President said, `The most expensive thing in this world is democracy and the rarest thing is peace. Today, we are in search of these two, and I invite all patriots to join us in order to ensure the accomplishment of this task. Patriots can have only one agenda, and that is protecting the country. All should unite for the sake of the motherland.`
He also noted that political decisions should not be taken out of jealousy or hatred.
`Every time the party faced betrayals, it survived and continued with more strength. We tried to work together with the UNP by signing an agreement. But since we cannot have faith on the UNP leadership we accepted those who came to us. It was done after seeking the party`s majority consent. We had to do it to ensure stability in Parliament,` the President said.
Referring to the past `betrayals` the SLFP had faced, President Rajapaksa said it was the same forces that have been reactivated at present to betray the party and that only the time had changed.
Newly appointed SLFP Treasurer Minister Jeyaraj Fernandopulle, said no one would have a future in politics by breaking away from the party.
`Those who broke away from the party in the past ended up by re-joining either the UNP or the SLFP.`
While noting that the JVP had played a major role during the 2005 Presidential campaign, Minister Fernandopulle said, `We have not forgotten that past and I again invite the JVP to join President Mahinda Rajapaksa`s leadership.`He also noted that some tended to take the baseless criticism against the President lightly because it did not matter to them.
`They think that it does not matter as long as they are safe. But I must insist that if some thing adverse happens to the President, no one in the party or the government would be able to survive,` he said.