Ranil to be sworn-in as PM today | Sunday Observer

Ranil to be sworn-in as PM today

Leader of the United National Party (UNP), Ranil Wickremesinghe will be sworn in as the Prime Minister at the Presidential Secretariat at10.30 a.m., today, the General Secretary of UNP, MP Akila Viraj Kariyawasam told a press conference at Temple Trees yesterday.

After the August 2015 general election, the UNP which contested under a coalition of the United National Front (UNF) received the highest number of parliamentary seats, 106.

 The United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) led by the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), the main political rival of UNF obtained 95 seats. As no party received a clear parliamentary majority, a section of the UPFA supported the UNP to form a government and it was a national government.

The United National Front (UNF) is now expected to form a government on its own without going in for a coalition such as a unity or a national government, the sources said.

President Maithripala Sirisena-led UPFA withdrew from the unity government on October 26 and UPFA Kurunegala district MP and former President Mahinda Rajapaksa was sworn-in as Prime Minister before President Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat on the same day.

President Sirisena asserted that his political culture was in complete contrast with that of Ranil Wickremesinghe and added that Ranil Wickremesinghe could do no good for the country. He assured that Ranil Wickremasinghe will not be re-appointed as the Prime Minister.

However, the new government led by Mahinda Rajapaksa couldn’t secure a parliamentary majority and the President later issued a Gazette dissolving Parliament.

The UNF, TNA and JVP challenged the Gazette and Mahinda Rajapaksa holding office of Prime Minister.

The Supreme Court last week determined that the President’s dissolution of Parliament was not in accordance with the Constitution and ordered the continuation of the Stay Order by the Court of Appeal that Mahinda Rajapaksa and other Ministers of Cabinet cannot function in their positions.

Following the political turmoil, Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned his post of Prime Minister at a function at his official residence at Wijerama Mawatha, Colombo 7 yesterday morning.

Cabinet Ministers are expected to be sworn in tomorrow or the latest by Tuesday. UNP parliamentarian Vajira Abeywardena told the Sunday Observer that it is more likely that the Cabinet will be sworn-in by Tuesday.