"UNP General Secretary Accuses Verite Research of Publishing False Reports for Personal Reasons

Palitha Range Bandara, General Secretary of the United National Party (UNP), made a strong statement yesterday, alleging that Verite Research Institute, led by Nishan de Mel, was disseminating inaccurate reports due to personal grievances. Bandara claimed that the motive behind these purportedly false reports was the denial of positions to de Mel within key committees, namely the Economic Stabilization Committee and the Constitutional Council advisory committee.

Speaking at a media briefing held at the UNP headquarters, Sirikotha, Bandara addressed Verite Research's claim that the public approval rating of the Government and the President had plummeted to 9 percent. He expressed skepticism over such a drastic decline within a week, emphasizing the potential influence of specific issues like the rise in electricity bills. Bandara laid blame for price hikes squarely on political authorities appointed since 1994.

Drawing attention to the disparity between the living conditions in March and the present, Bandara argued that the President's standing should be evaluated accordingly. He asserted that had Nishan de Mel been appointed to the Economic Stabilisation Committee, the institute would not have made adverse statements. Furthermore, Bandara accused de Mel of aligning with the opposition, specifically the SJB and the JVP, after failing to secure a position on the committee recommended by the International Monetary Fund.

Bandara also linked de Mel to recent speculation regarding potential reductions in the interest rates of the Employees' Provident Fund (EPF) and Employees' Trust Fund (ETF). In a stern warning, the UNP General Secretary urged de Mel to refrain from pursuing personal gains at the expense of the country's welfare."

"In conclusion, the allegations made by UNP General Secretary Palitha Range Bandara against Verite Research Institute raise questions about the motivations behind the institute's recent reports on the government's approval ratings. Bandara's assertion that Nishan de Mel's absence from key committees led to the publication of false information underscores the complex interplay between institutional dynamics and personal ambitions. The call for restraint and a focus on national interest, rather than personal advantage, serves as a reminder of the importance of responsible and unbiased reporting in the political landscape. As these claims and counterclaims unfold, it remains crucial to scrutinize information with a discerning eye, considering both the political context and the potential influence of individual aspirations on the narratives presented to the public."