Ahead of the Northern Provincial Council election likely to be held in September, the rift within the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has widened, opening up avenues for a possible split in the party in the near future, Daily Mirror learns.
The TNA is an amalgam of five parties – Ilankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi (ITAK), Eelam People’s Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF), Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO), Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) and People’s Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE). Only the first three parties have Parliamentary representation.
These allies have held negotiations over a period of time on the registration of the TNA as a separate political party. However, there has been a conflict of opinion between the ITAK of R. Sampanthan and the other parties on the sharing of responsibilities when registering the party.
According to TNA sources, the rift has widened today, and the four parties are now considering a possible electoral pact for the northern election leaving aside the ITAK led by Mr. Sampanthan. Besides, the ITAK is represented by MPs Mavai Senathirajah and M. A. Sumanthiran.
The five parties were to meet last week. It is learnt that some senior members of the party have requested Mr. Sampanthan to take all possible measures to avoid a split in the party, ahead of the Northern Provincial Council election seen by many analysts as a stepping-stone to win over the political rights of the Tamil people.
The United States–sponsored Resolution, adopted by the United Nations Human Rights Council acknowledged the government’s announcement to conduct the election in September. Besides, India also called for elections in the north.(By Kelum Bandara)