Sri Lanka's Parliament passes no-confidence vote against PM Rajapaksa

DN Bureau

Sri Lankan Parliament on Wednesday passed a no-confidence motion against the government headed by his controversially-appointed Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Sri Lankan Parliament (File Photo)
Sri Lankan Parliament (File Photo)

Colombo: In a major setback to President Maithripala Sirisena, the Sri Lankan Parliament on Wednesday passed a no-confidence motion against the government headed by his controversially-appointed Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

The Parliament on Wednesday met for the first time since October 26, when President Sirisena sacked prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and suspended the Parliament plunging the island nation into a crisis.

Parliament Speaker Karu Jayasuriya announced that a majority of the 225-member assembly supported the no-confidence motion against Rajapaksa, who was appointed by President Sirisena as prime minister on October 26 in place of Wickremesinghe.

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"According to the voice, I recognise that the government has no majority," Jayasuriya announced in the House as Rajapaksa supporters protested.

He gave the ruling after the no-confidence motion was taken for a vote. The Speaker calculated the votes based on the voices he heard as Rajapaksa supporters disrupted the proceedings.

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa

Jayasuriya later adjourned the House until 10 am Thursday.

Wickremesinghe's United National Party (UNP) Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa later told reporters that the Government clearly lost the floor test.

He said Prime Minister Rajapaksa must now step down as he does not have majority support in Parliament.

The unexpected session on Wednesday morning comes a day after the Supreme Court on Tuesday overturned President Sirisena's controversial decision to dissolve Parliament and halted the preparations for snap polls on January 5. (PTI)

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