UPFA opposes Tamil party as main opposition

Colombo, Sep 2 (IANS) United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) MPs on Wednesday voiced concerns over the Tamil political party’s bid to become the main opposition in the Sri Lankan parliament.

The UPFA, defeated by the United National Party (UNP) in parliamentary elections last month, won 95 seats but later split up after its largest coalition partner, the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), decided to join the UNP to form a united government, Xinhua reported.

Fourteen UPFA members, including former president Mahinda Rajapakse, now sit in the opposition benches but remain beaten by the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) that won 16 seats.

The TNA last week said its parliamentary group leader must be recognised the leader of the opposition in accordance with parliamentary practice and convention as they are the largest political party in the opposition.

But UPFA member Udaya Gammanpila said its members who had decided to sit as opposition MPs had submitted a name for the opposition leader’s post to President Maithripala Sirisena.

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