Politicking the Sri Lankan way

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapake’s campaign manager on Wednesday denied there were rifts between the ruling Bandaranaike family and their presidential candidate despite a bruising row that is already splashed in the national press. Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapake’s campaign manager on Wednesday denied there were rifts between the ruling Bandaranaike family and their presidential candidate despite a bruising row that is already splashed in the national press. Ports and Aviation Minister Mangala Samaraweera, who is Rajapakse’s main campaign manager, rejected reports that President Chandrika Kumaratunga had criticized the deal Rajapakse signed with the government’s former coalition partner, the JVP.

“She was only expressing an opinion,” Samaraweera said, refereeing to a letter written by the President to Rajapakse calling for his explanation on the pre-election agreement with the JVP.

The President had said she would be compelled to take disciplinary action against Rajapakse for forging ties with the former coalition partner.

She also accused Rajapakse of keeping her in the dark about negotiations with the JVP, saying he only informed her an hour before a deal was signed.

The Marxists pledged to back the prime min