July 15, Colombo: Sri Lanka's major Muslim political party, Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) today denied that there is a split in the party as some media reports have claimed.
A spokesman for the party has said that the media reports which claim that the party is likely to split following the decision to contest under the ruling party, United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) is completely false.
Local media reports citing SLMC sources have said that several leading figures of the party have walked out of the Supreme Council meeting last Friday when the party leader Rauf Hakeem has announced the need to contest under the ruling coalition.
The National Organizer of the SLMC Youth Wing, A. M. Jameel has told local media that following the party's decision to contest the Eastern PC polls under the UPFA, opposition in an attempt to ruin party's chances at the polls are spreading rumors.
"These rumors are completely false and it is a conspiracy by the opposition," he has said.
Jameel has claimed that National Congress led by A.L.M. Athaulla and the All Ceylon People's Congress led by Rishad Bathiyutheen are not happy with Hakeem's decision over the allocation of electoral seats and therefore spreading rumors.
The spokesman however, admitted that some members of the party were not in favor of the decision to contest with the ruling party but the party is not affected adversely by the decision.
The SLMC held a series of discussions with other parties before it decided to remain in the UPFA. The SLMC was demanding the Chief Minister candidature of the Easter Province to the party.
The ruling party has however decided to keep the incumbent Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan for the position.