Ready to work with Sirisena again: Wickremesinghe's United National Party

PTI Colombo, Sri Lanka Dec 16, 2018, 11.58 AM(IST)

File photo of Ranil Wickremesinghe. Photograph:( AFP )

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Sirisena sacked Wickremesinghe on October 26 and appointed Mahinda Rajapaksa in his place, in a controversial move which plunged the island nation into a constitutional crisis.

Sri Lanka's ousted Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's United National Party (UNP) has said it is ready to work with President Maithripala Sirisena, who was "misled by some groups" against the unity government.

Sirisena sacked Wickremesinghe on October 26 and appointed Mahinda Rajapaksa in his place, in a controversial move which plunged the island nation into a constitutional crisis.

Rajapaksa resigned on Saturday after two crucial Supreme Court decisions made his efforts to cling to premiership untenable, paving the way for the return of 69-year-old Wickremesinghe who had refused to step down asserting that his sacking was illegal.

UNP deputy leader Sajith Premadasa said that he was not surprised that the President had agreed to appoint Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister again despite taking a firm position earlier that he will not appoint Wickremesinghe.

"This showed the true character of the President," he was quoted as saying by the Colombo Gazette.

Premadasa said that the President was "misled by some groups who were against the unity Government" and this resulted in the President removing Wickremesinghe. But now truth has prevailed," he said.

"The party is prepared to work with Sirisena again in the government," he said.

Premadasa said, "The lessons from the incident must be used to strengthen the foundation of democracy and promote justice and fairness." 

UNP General Secretary MP Akila Viraj Kariyawasam said the new Cabinet will be appointed within two days.