Nava Sama Samaja Party (NSSP) removed from the Fourth International (FI)

The Nava Sama Samaja Party’s suspension from the Fourth International (FI) has been overwhelmingly supported by the FI’s leadership body, the International Committee, in its annual meeting which ended on 25 February 2021. 

The NSSP’s membership was initially suspended by the Bureau of the Fourth International on 02 October 2020. This decision was subject to confirmation by the International Committee, which leads the FI between its Conferences (World Congress). Under the Statutes of the Fourth International, only the World Congress can take a decision on disaffiliation of the NSSP.

The suspension of the former section of the FI in Sri Lanka, follows the NSSP’s support for the United National Party (UNP) election campaign, including the participation of Vickramabahu Karunarathne as one of its parliamentary candidates. 

The Fourth International is a grouping of revolutionary socialists in more than 40 countries worldwide. Political independence of the working class is central to the revolutionary project of the Fourth International. In 1964 the FI expelled the Lanka Sama Samaja Party (LSSP) from its membership, after the LSSP entered a coalition government with the bourgeois populist Sri Lanka Freedom Party. 

The NSSP which was formed in opposition to coalition politics in 1978 became the Sri Lankan section of the FI in 1990. However, in the recent past the NSSP’s General Secretary led it into an alliance with the United National Party leader Ranil Wickremesinghe. This was opposed by some members who were excluded from the NSSP in 2014 after they began publishing the Wame Handa (Lfft Voice) newspaper to promote their views.

In 2018 the “Wame Handa” was recognized as one part of the section of the FI in Sri Lanka. Following the decision of the International Committee on 25 February, “Wame Handa” is now the only affiliated organisation of the Fourth International in Sri Lanka.