SF demands removal of Daya Ratnayake from SJB

Thursday, 1 February 2024 00:02 –      – 226

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Sarath Fonseka

Daya Ratnayake


  • Says many former Army officers supporting SJB have expressed concerns about Ratnayake being welcomed by party 
  • Claims Ratnayake is either irrational or shameless to join SJB after filing evidence against SF for 2010 trial which led to his imprisonment 
  • Expresses deep disgust at prospect of engaging in politics alongside someone with such a history
  • Assures he will not leave SJB due to this incident and remains committed to party

Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) MP and former Army Commander Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka yesterday demanded the removal of General Daya Ratnayake from the party.

Ratnayake joined the SJB on Monday during a meeting with SJB leader Sajith Premadasa and was promptly appointed as the party’s Senior Advisor on State Affairs.

During a press conference, Fonseka revealed that he has been receiving calls and visits from numerous senior Army Officers expressing their concerns about the party’s decision to welcome Ratnayake into its ranks.

“The SJB is a party that we built through significant sacrifices. It doesn’t belong to a select few but stands as a collective effort. We worked hard to secure the party’s electoral success. We cannot allow any harm to befall the party and its values. A person like Daya Ratnayake has no place in our party,” he said.

The former Army Commander said he expressed his serious concerns and objections to party leader Sajith Premadasa and General Secretary Ranjith Madduma Bandara as well.

Fonseka expressed his disbelief at the prospect of Daya Ratnayake wanting to join the same party as him to engage in politics. He suggested that based on Ratnayake’s behaviour during their time in the Army, he could be perceived as either irrational or shameless.

Fonseka recalled an incident in 2010, following the Presidential election, where he was arrested. According to Fonseka, Ratnayake played a role in supporting what he referred to as a “kangaroo court” by submitting false evidence against him.

Fonseka pointed out that during the mentioned period, Daya Ratnayake held the 25th position in the Army’s seniority list. Despite this, Fonseka alleged that Ratnayake’s involvement in these actions propelled him to prominence, ultimately allowing him to secure the position of Army Commander, and bypassing other senior officers within the force.

The SJB MP stated that a considerable number of former Army officers supporting the SJB had experienced various forms of harassment at the hands of Ratnayake during their service in the Army. Expressing his strong disapproval, he conveyed a sense of deep disgust at the prospect of engaging in politics alongside someone with such a history.

Fonseka mentioned that SJB General Secretary Ranjith Madduma Bandara has expressed his disagreement with the decision to accept Ratnayake into the party. Despite this disagreement, Fonseka assured that he would not leave the party due to this incident and remained committed to staying with the SJB.

Fonseka further commented that the inclusion of Ratnayake in the SJB might be part of a conspiracy, emphasising the importance for the party leadership to be cautious and not succumb to such schemes.


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