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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2863

We will win’-ACMC

Colombo, 02 June, (

The top rung of All Ceylon Makkal Congress (ACMC), stepping in to the fray vowed that the No Confidence Motion (NCM) against their leader Rishad Bathiudeen will be defeated -and Minister Bathiudeen will emerge victorious.

Clearing the air on the alleged association and ‘membership’ of recently arrested Dr. Seigu Saafi (of the Kurunegala hospital) with their Party, they said that he was already removed from ACMC some time ago. They also insist that the political opposition is making false allegations in the NCM against Minister Bathiudeen on “an anti-ACMC agenda.”

• ACMC’s top rung steps into the fray, goes all out defending Rishad
• ‘NCM is baseless, anti-ACMC campaign by Opposition’-ACMC’s Jayathileke
• Cautions Mahinda Rajapaksa on ‘racist elements’ misleading him

“Dr Shafi is not a member of ACMC. ACMC has only five MPs in the Parliament. Dr Shafi had left our party after we too let him go” said the ACMC Lawyer Rushdy Habib, addressing a special press briefing at SLFI, Colombo 7.

The press briefing held on 30 May also focused on clarifying some issues raised by the No Confidence Motion brought against ACMC Leader and the Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen. “ACMC has only five MPs in the Parliament.

Dr Shafi had left our party after we too let him go. He received high number of votes in Kurunegala but since ACMC list had only five MPs in Parliament and he was the sixth, and he was removed from ACMC membership and fixed to the UNP list.

Therefore we have no associations with him now” said Lawyer Habib. He added: “Also with regard to arrest of former Provincial Council MP Rifkan Bathiurdeen, the issue has been raised whether he, after being arrested, having obtained a statement was then released without being produced to the Courts. During a round-up operation he too was questioned just as any other individual coming under their search. He was questioned about his vehicle as well. But he was not arrested since there was nothing suspicious with him or about the vehicle."

" Rifkhan was only questioned during the search since in any roundup, everyone is questioned-even if they round up a judicial official, he too will be questioned-that is the routine of a roundup. But some media reported that Rifkhan was “arrested and then released”, which was false and wrong.” Former ACMC MP (PC) P Jayathilleke, addressing the briefing said:

“The two villages in Welioya in Northern province was under LTTE control from 1983 right up to 2009. The Chief Buddhist monks of the two temples in these villages already testified about Minister Bathudeen’s support to their temples. Their Buddhist temples were constructed with the help of Minister Bathiudeen. Some other Buddhist temples in the area did not even have toilet facilities for the use of venerable monks and it was Minister Bathiudeen who provided such facilities to them, as testified by the two Chief monks (Nayaka Swaminwahanse’s).

Also the allegations made against Minister Bathiudeen in the NCM are baseless. To-date no single person has filed a complaint with the Police or gone to Courts against Minister Bathiudeen on the basis of any one of these ten accusations in the NCM, which proves the NCM accusations themselves are baseless, and politically motivated.

They are exacting political revenge since Minister Bathiudeen did not extend his support to them during the 52-day coup in 2018. Even we ourselves insist that if Minister Bathiudeen is guilty on any of these allegations, that he should be punished. But we are against making mere allegations against Minister Bathiudeen just for political gains and on an ‘anti-ACMC agenda.’ Especially as a former supporter of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, and as a representative of Northern people, I observe some racist groups in former President Rajapaksa party -specifically two individuals –are spreading racist hatred within his Party. We urge former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to exercise caution against these racist characters around him.”

At the 30 May meeting, the ACMC members also vowed that the Parliamentary NCM against their leader, Minister Bathiudeen, will be defeated and in the end, and it will be a win for Minister Bathiudeen.

- Asian Tribune -

Former ACMC Northern PC Member P Jayathilleke (fourth from left), addresses the party’s press briefing on 30 May joined by ACMC Lawyer Rushdy Habib (far left), ACMC Kurunegala organiser Nazeer (second from left), Mohemed Faiz (ACMC Western PC Member & Chief organiser-Western Prov-third from left), ACMC Secretary General M Subaitheen (fifth from left), Deputy Minister of Ports & Shipping Abdullah Mahrooff  (second from right) and Dr Yusuf Marikkar (far right) at SLFI, Colombo 7.
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