Colombo: Mahinda Rajapaksa, who was appointed as Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister by President Maithripala Sirisena in a controversial move, resigned Saturday as two crucial Supreme Court decisions made the embattled former strongman’s efforts to cling to premiership untenable.Also Read - Elephant Kills 2 Sri Lanka Cricket Stadium Staff Members
Rajapaksa informed the lawmakers of United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) that he has resigned from the post, MP Shehan Semasinghe told reporters. Also Read - Sri Lanka Tightens Covid Rules at Airports, Says All Steps Taken to Prevent Entry of Omicron Variant
Rajapaksa was appointed as the prime minister on October 26 by President Sirisena in a controversial move after sacking Ranil Wickremesinghe, which plunged the country into an unprecedented constitutional crisis. Also Read - Omicron Response: List of Countries That Have Put Travel Restrictions To African Nations
The Supreme Court on Friday refused to stay a court order restraining Rajapaksa, 73, from holding the office of Prime Minister until it fully heard the case next month.
The apex court on Thursday unanimously declared that the dissolution of Parliament by Sirisena was “illegal”.
Pro-Rajapaksa lawmaker, Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena, had told reporters that Rajapaksa decided in a meeting on Friday with President Sirisena to resign to allow the President to appoint a new government.
Wickremesinghe is expected to take oath as Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister on Sunday.
President Maithripala Sirisena has reportedly agreed to reinstate ousted Prime Minister Wickremesinghe in the post after a discussion with him over the phone on Friday.
Further, Ranil Wickremesinghe is expected to take oath as Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister on Sunday after Mahinda Rajapaksa resignation today, signalling an end to the nearly two-month power tussle in the island nation.
President Maithripala Sirisena has reportedly agreed to reinstate ousted Prime Minister Wickremesinghe in the post after a discussion with him over the phone on Friday, Colombo Page reported.
Wickremesinghe’s United National Party (UNP) said that it was decided during the discussion that he will take oath as the Prime Minister at 10 am on Sunday.
The President removed Wickremesinghe from the post of Prime Minister on October 26 and appointed former president Rajapaksa as the Premier, plunging the country into an unprecedented crisis.
(With agency inputs)