Sri Lankan Parliament deferred till 8th May

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Seems like not all is well within the Sri Lankan parliament. In an appalling move, President of Sri Lanka Mr. Maithripala Sirisena has put an off to the parliament session till next month 8th. This step has been taken owing to the intense power struggle crisis happening between him and his unity government’s prime minister.

An announcement from the government cited that the parliament meetings have been put on hold “with effect from midnight” Thursday under article 70 of the constitution.

Alliance within the disputing classes within the unity government have embittered after both went through losses in February’s local council elections

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s United National Party (UNP) had heightened stress on the followers of Sirisena – who voted against Wickremesinghe in a recent no-confidence motion – to resign.

Parliament had been expected to meet again the following Thursday and presidential officials refrained from any commentary on the reason behind the suspension.

“We have been surprised by the announcement,” one government legislator who requested anonymity told AFP.

Just hours before he announced the parliament to be put on halt, Sirisena had delegated acting ministers to the positions of those who took a walk off the Cabinet. Wickremesinghe last week won the motion of no confidence moved by the joint opposition and supported by Sirisena’s ministers.

In recent weeks, Sirisena has scaled down Wickremesinghe’s powers, pulling out his control on the central bank, the policy-making National Operations Room and several other institutions.

 

The UNP and Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) were bashed out by the former strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa’s party in the February polls to acquire control of two-thirds of the 340 local councils at stake.

There is a possibility of a reshuffle of the government as said by a presidential spokesman earlier on Thursday.

The SLFP is yet to decide if it would remain a part of the government.