The UNP says the JVP cannot justify its call for appointing Gen (retd) Sarath Fonseka as the Opposition Leader.
The main Opposition party alleges that the JVP is trying to flex its muscles, though being reduced to just five members in parliament.
UNP spokesman Gayantha Karunatilake said yesterday that the JVP was no longer in a position to dictate terms to anyone.
Karunatilake said former Kurunegala District MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake s demand that Fonseka should succeed UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe was nothing but a joke.
He said the UNP leader would remain the Opposition Leader.
Responding to a query by The Island, the Galle District MP said the JVP could appoint Fonseka as the leader of Democratic National alliance (DNA) parliamentary group or even accommodate him on its politburo.
He said that if the JVP believed Fonseka was good enough to lead the Opposition, there could not be any reason to deny him the leadership of its five-man parliamentary group.
He emphasised that a newcomer could not be expected to function as the Opposition Leader.
Karunatilake said the move to take over the Office of the Opposition was not realistic.
He said the UNF s final tally would be about 60 seats, including those appointed through the National List whereas the JVP could not expect more than six seats. Their six seats would include one National List seat, he said. The TNA would increase its final tally to about 15 or 16, including National List slots, he said.
A JVP spokesman said yesterday that they had not decided on the parliamentary group leader s post. He said an announcement would be made shortly.
Former JVP parliamentary group leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake is widely expected to enter parliament through the National List.
Karunatilake said that the JVP had conveniently forgotten that Fonseka was not even a member of the JVP. He urged the JVP to be sensible in its approach in post-LTTE period and work together with other parties in the Opposition.