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Lanka speaker recognises Wickremesinghe as PM

Sri Lankan Parliament’s speaker on Sunday recognised Ranil Wickremesinghe as the country’s Prime Minister, saying he has “obtained a mandate to secure democracy and good governance, in a major relief to the embattled UNP leader who was sacked by President Maithripala Sirisena in a dramatic move on Friday night.

In a letter to Sirisena, Speaker Karu Jayasuriya questioned the president’s decision to suspend parliament till November 16, saying it will have “serious and undesirable” consequences on the country.

He asked the President to restore Wickremesinghe’s privileges as the leader of the government who has “obtained a mandate to secure democracy and good governance.

Sirisena on Friday night sacked Wickremesinghe and appointed former strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa as the new prime minister. Next day, Sirisena suspended Parliament till November 16 after Wickremesinghe sought an emergency session to prove his majority.

The president also withdrew Wickremesinghe’s personal security and vehicles in order to accord them to his 72-year-old successor, who staged a dramatic political comeback on Friday.

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