Friday, 24th September 2021

Speaker Karu Jayasuriya has said that Sirisena likely to convene Parliament on Nov 7

Colombo (IANS): Sri Lanka’s Parliament Speaker Karu Jayasuriya on Friday informed lawmakers that President Maithripala Sirisena was likely to convene Parliament on November 7.

Jayasuriya, in a meeting with political party legislators, said that Sirisena had in a telephone conversation informed him that Parliament would convene on November 7 and a gazette notification would be issued on either Friday or Saturday, Xinhua news agency reported.

Last week, Sirisena had prorogued Parliament till November 16.

Parliamentarians, including ousted Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, had urged for an urgent parliamentary session, to identify which party held the majority in the House.

Newly-appointed Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, who was sworn in last Friday after the President sacked Wickremesinghe, earlier said that Sirisena had informed him that the Parliament would convene on November 5 in order to settle the ongoing political crisis.

According to a government official, Sirisena had also informed the decision to convene the Parliament on November 5 to the new foreign envoys who presented their credentials to him on Thursday.

However, on Thursday evening, General Secretary of the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) Susil Premajayantha told journalists that no such announcement was made by the President and Parliament would convene as announced on November 16.

Sirisena is the leader of the UPFA.

Premajayantha said that Parliament needed time to prepare to meet and there was not enough time to meet on November 5.

However, there has been no statement from Sirisena or Rajapaksa since then.

A political crisis erupted in Sri Lanka last Friday when Sirisena, in a shocking move, dissolved Cabinet and sacked Wickremesinghe and appointed former President Rajapaksa as the new Prime Minister.

Wickremesinghe and his party maintained that the move was illegal as they still held a majority in the House.

Sirisena formed a new Cabinet since then with several ministers, state and deputy ministers already sworn in.

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