Need people of Kabir’s caliber to lead country into future – Sajith
June 16, 2019 02:52 pm
Issuing a statement on United National Party (UNP) Chairman MP Kabir Hashim, UNP Deputy Leader Minister Sajith Premadasa stated that MP Hashim set an example to leaders across the political spectrum when he sacrificed his cabinet ministry in solidarity with the Muslim community.
Premadasa says that Hashim stood up against xenophobia and stood firmly between his colleagues and those who preach hatred and division along ethnic and religious lines.
According to the Deputy Leader, Sri Lanka needs experienced and educated professionals like Hashim to develop the country and unite the people across artificial cultural boundaries.
The UNP, too, needs people of Kabir Hashim’s caliber at the frontlines of our mission to lead Sri Lanka into the future, further said Premadasa.
In his statement, Minister Sajith Premadasa formally called upon MP Kabir Hashim to rejoin the cabinet and take his place in the ‘journey to chart a new political future for all Sri Lankans’.
Complete statement of Sajith Premadasa:
“At a time when the people of Sri Lanka see politicians as self-serving and power hungry, UNP Chairman Kabir Hashim set an example to leaders across the political spectrum when he sacrificed his cabinet ministry in solidarity with the Muslim community. I believe this act of courage by a senior cabinet minister who has not been accused of extremism or any wrongdoing has set a high bar for integrity and solidarity.
I understand why Hon. Kabir Hashim took this course of action. Seeing his cabinet colleagues falling victim to hate speech and a mob mentality, it was natural for a moral man, a decent man and a principled man like Kabir Hashim, to stand up to xenophobia and stand firmly between his colleagues and those who preach hatred and division along ethnic and religious lines.
Mr. Hashim is a leader who has been elected several times by voters of all communities, whether Sinhalese or Tamil, and of all religions, Buddhists, Hindus and Christians, in the Kegalle District. Even in 2010, when only 60 UNP MPs were elected to Parliament, Kabir Hashim was one of those who held the confidence of his electorate and did the party proud.
Yesterday’s protests in the Kegalle District calling upon Kabir Hashim to reenter the Cabinet of Ministers and reclaim his portfolio demonstrate that the people still have confidence in Kabir Hashim. Now, more than ever, this country needs experienced, educated professionals like Kabir Hashim to develop this country and unite our people across artificial cultural boundaries. As the Deputy Leader of the UNP, I believe the party too needs people of Kabir Hashim’s caliber at the frontlines of our mission to lead Sri Lanka into the future.
Now is not the time for people of his caliber to remain in the shadows. Now is the time for leaders to come forward, step up and play their part in charting the future of the UNP and the future of the country. I formally call upon Hon. Kabir Hashim to rejoin the cabinet as soon as possible and take his place in our journey to chart a new political future for all Sri Lankans.”