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Political Crisis : President Sirisena to swear in a new coalition Government

19 February 2018 - 614   - 0

Sri Lanka’s nine day old political stalemate will end Wednesday when President Maithripala Sirisena swears in a new coalition Government with Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister.

He told his party’s Parliamentary Group that the Attorney General has advised him that the President had no power to remove the Prime Minister under the 19th Amendment to the Constitution. Hence, he appealed to his party MPs to give him one month’s time to put things right.

Sirisena said those wishing to serve in a new Cabinet could continue to do so whilst others were free to decide what they wanted to do. At the meeting Minister Susl Premajayantha revealed that he was returning files to his Ministry and packing to leave. At least two other ministers are to follow suit.

The political crisis developed after the results of the local authorities’ elections on February 11 where both the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and the United National Party (UNP) suffered defeats.

President Sirisena, who is the leader of the SLFP told Premier Wickremesinghe that his ministers had identified him as the main cause for defeat. This was allegedly on the grounds that it was only the UNP policies that were being pursued.

Mr Wickremesinghe, however, declined to resign saying there was no requirement for him to do so. He declared that it was only the

Parliament which was empowered to remove him.

 

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