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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2588

Sri Lanka PM, government now paralyzed without a Cabinet

Colombo, 19 December, (Asiantribune.com):

Despite victoriously announcing the formation of a broad political alliance, two days later, the new Sri Lankan Prime Minister found himself unable to announce his own Cabinet.

His list of nominees for the Cabinet, to be submitted to President Sirisena, but it has not been so far submitted but expected to be submitted soo by today - 19 December.

On 17 December, Lankan PM Ranil Wickremesinghe announced the formation of a new Alliance named ‘National Democratic Front’ (NDF) during the rally organized in Colombo to celebrate his victory. The rally packed more than 100,000 to Galle Face.

Thereafter the same day evening he was expected to get his new Cabinet finalized-but two days later as of (today) 19 December, still no Cabinet in sight.

His side has only 103 MPs and is now a minority government. On Monday 18, three UPFA MPs crossed over to his side -Vijith Wijayamuni Zoysa, Lakshman Seneviratne and Indika Bandaranayake-making the MP count go up to 106.

Thereafter on the night of 18 December Political circles said three more SLFP MPs are to cross over today 19 December. If thatntakes place, PM Wickremesinghe will need only four more seats to gain the majority.

However, on 18 December belligerent Sri Lanka President Sirisena has declared that he will not give any Ministerial portfolios to SLFP MPs crossing over to UNP.

This, combined with the rule that Cabinet total cannot exceed 30 and President is also entitled to three Ministries, has placed PM Wickremesinghe in a dilemma and unable to finalize his Cabinet nominee list on time.

To help him ease the situation two key figures in UNF-Malik Samarawickreme MP and Mano Ganeshan MP- have announced that they would not seek Cabinet posts. Also to overcome the gridlock, UNP MP Lakshman Kiriella announced that the UNP is now working on a motion for Parliamentary approval for a Cabinet larger than stipulated 30 members.

Meanwhile PM Wickremesinghe is planning to announce the organizing / Steering Committee of his ‘National Democratic Front’ (NDF) this Friday 21.

- Asian Tribune -

Sri Lanka PM, government now paralyzed without a Cabinet
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