Wednesday, 21 November, 2018

Sri Lanka President Dissolves Parliament and Calls Snap Election

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena
Jeannette Daniel | 10 November, 2018, 07:34

The two have been battling for the prime minister's post for two weeks as worldwide concern grows over the mounting turmoil.

Senaratne said the second illegal act of the President was to dissolve Parliament after he found he did not have the numbers to show a majority in Parliament.

By avoiding a test of his majority on the floor of the House, Rajapaksa will remain caretaker prime minister until elections are concluded and a new parliament meets on January 17.

"The president can't hold an election just because he has a personal prejudice with the prime minister", De Silva said "I think there will be a massive backing of citizens that believe in democracy and rule of law".

"No, no there won't be a dissolution of parliament or a referendum", Rohana Lakshman Piyadasa, the general secretary of President Sirisena's Sri Lanka Freedom Party, told the party's central committee meeting on Thursday. Jayasuriya also said that some of the lawmakers were offered bribes and ministerial posts in the new government if they supported the move.

In a situation that has developed into a full-blown political crisis for the South Asian island nation, Wickremesinghe has refused to leave his position since being expelled by Sirisena on October 26.

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"At the moment we have 104 or 105 MPs", UPFA spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella told reporters, adding that the Sirisena-Rajapaksa group hoped to secure support from "crossover" legislators.

"This dissolution by the President is illegal and goes against the constitution", the UNP said on Twitter.

President Sirisena has failed to persuade the parliament to support his ouster of his one-time ally Wickramasinghe. The speaker, the 225th member, is neutral. To this, Wickremesinghe said he would certainly challenge the decision in the court and the party would move an impeachment motion against the President saying, he is a threat to the democratic tradition of Sri Lanka.

The EU said Friday, before the dissolution, that the crisis had scarred the Indian Ocean island's worldwide reputation. "We will fight this dictator to the end".

"You have not let this country be plunged into the darkness of dictatorship".

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