Commenting on President Maithripala Sirisena’s request for Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka to take up the post of Army Commander or Overall Commander for two years, Labour Minister W.D.J. Seneviratne said â€œPresident Maithripala Sirisena has never dreamt of offering Minister Sarath Fonseka the post of army commander or the responsibility of heading a committee on essential services in case of being disrupted because of TU action,â€. He told a news conference held at Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Headquarters that what the President said as a joke had been given various interpretations. â€œWhen speaking about the non-ending strikes, the President has jokingly asked whether Minister Fonseka could control such situations,â€ he said.
Similarly, Social Empowerment and Welfare Minister S. B. Dissanayake said the President was not speaking seriously and was only joking about it. Addressing the weekly Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) media briefing today Minister Dissanayaka said the request for the appointment of Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka for the post of Army Commander was not needed and it was not a serious appointment by the President. â€œI personally admire appointing Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka for the post. After we finished the 30-year civil war, there will be no serious situations except for protests. â€œIf there is anything serious we will also get involved without doubt. There is no need of having special units. The appointment is fine to streamline the services of the Army,â€ Minister Dissanayaka said.
However, addressing the media, Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources Management Wijith Wijayamuni Zoysa said the request should be treated as a serious matter. â€œSeveral underhand forces are operational to hinder the development of the country. For that there should be special forces to suppress them,â€ Minister Zoysa said.