Sri Lanka’s Six-time PM, Wickremesinghe Elected President

Sri Lanka's Six-time PM, Wickremesinghe Elected President (News Central TV)

Ranil Wickremesinghe, Sri Lanka’s six-time prime minister has been elected as replacement for Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who fled the country following protests calling for his resignation last week.

Wickremesinghe was elected Wednesday, with 134 votes in a three-cornered parliamentary vote, while Dullas Alahapperuma, his main opponent polled 82 vote, while Anura Dissanayake polled only 3 votes.

In a brief acceptance speech, Wickremesinghe says: “Our divisions are now over.” He called on Alahapperuma “to join me and work together to bring the country out of the crisis we are facing.”

The overwhelmingly elected president hinted that his swearing-in ceremony will take place later Wednesday in a simple fashion.

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Following his election, Wickremesinghe will be choosing a new prime minister to form a new cabinet, as the current one automatically stands dissolved.

“This is a historic session, not only for parliament but the entire country. The eyes of the world are on us today as we elect a new president,” says Speaker Mahinda Abeywardana, adding that the new leader was elected as the world observed, to “serve the balance period of Rajapaksa’s term ending November 2024.”

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