Marriage of convenience | Sri Lanka | Sirisena | Rajapaksa

Ranil Wickremesinghe has refused to accept his dismissal

Image Ranil Wickremesinghe has refused to accept his dismissal

Amid the ongoing political tension, Resident Coordinator of the United Nations in Sri Lanka Hanaa Singer has met Sirisena and Parliament Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, delivering Guterres' message for the need to respect democratic values and constitutional provisions.

While the debate on Sirisena's constitutional powers to sack or appoint a prime minister without the consent of the parliament continues, it will be advantage Rajapaksa with each passing day.

Six MPs have already switched sides and been granted portfolios under Mr. Rajapaksa's new administration.

It has to be mentioned that when Mr Ranil Wickramasinghe was appointed as the Prime Minister in 2015, by the present President of Sri Lanka, he had only 42 MPs backing him whereas the sitting Prime Minister had the support of over 120 MPs.

"I was asked to make a step forward to become a cabinet minister", Bandara told reporters as he played a voice recording of a conversation he allegedly had with a Sirisena loyalist, who told him that he would be rewarded with a Cabinet position.

Devi said she wanted to show solidarity after Wickremesinghe's government built 5,000 homes for people like her who were displaced by the civil war that ended in 2009.

Wickremesinghe survived a no-confidence motion in Parliament in April brought by Rajapaksa supporters over allegations involving his appointment of a Singaporean as the central bank governor, who is now accused of leaking inside information to benefit his son-in-law in a treasury bond sale.

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According to latest counts, Wickremesinghe now has 102 MPs from the 225-seat assembly after another defection while Rajapakse and Sirisena also have 102.

The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) party, which has seven lawmakers, said its members had also rejected offers to join the Sirisena-Rajapakse camp. Plantation workers in the Tamil-dominated Vavuniya district had planned a strike on October 27, demanding a wage hike.

So, Rajapaksa has taken office?

The US turned a blind eye to the Rajapakse government's anti-democratic methods and abuses of human rights.

"Sirisena is the most ungrateful man". "When we campaigned for Sirisena in 2015, we talked against the politics of fear and repression", she said. Most of the remaining 21 MPs - including the TNA - are set to oppose Mr. Rajapaksa, observers said.

Rajapaksa will continue to face worldwide pressure because of his human rights records, but it will only make him and Sirisena more popular among Sinhala nationalists. "They will have to retreat now", he said.

A number of constitutional experts have said the sacking of Mr Wickremesinghe is not legal.

The most famous (or notorious) symbol of the burgeoning Sri Lanka-China cooperation is the port of Hambantota at the island's south, viewed as an important cog in the wheel of Beijing's One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative, or a part of "String of Pearls" that Beijing seeks to create around its neighbour India in fight for regional, and ultimately, global dominance.

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