Sri Lanka: Majority of political parties threaten no-confidence motion against Ranil Wickremesinghe
Colombo, July 14, 2022
A majority of the political parties in Sri Lanka have threatened to bring a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister and Acting President Ranil Wickremesinghe.
Opposition parties have told the Speaker that Wickremesinghe should resign immediately and Parliament should be summoned forthwith.
On Wednesday, protesters who demanded the exit of Wickremesinghe took over the Prime Minister's office despite the use of heavy force by the police and the military who fired water cannons and tear gas and finally shot in the air. Nearly 40 protesters were admitted to hospitals with injuries.
Protesters next walked to the Speaker's official residence and Parliament where they were chased away with heavy force in which 42 were injured, including two soldiers and a police man. Wednesday's violent protests saw the death of a 26-year-old protester.
Chief of Defence Staff Shavendra de Silva urged the people to stay calm and assist the security forces until the next President is elected from Parliament on July 20.
Wickremesinghe imposed emergency regulations and curfew in the Western province at Wednesday noon but later extended the curfew to the whole island and it was lifted at 5 a.m. on Thursday.
He urged the political parties to appoint a Prime Minister acceptable to both the government and the opposition.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who fled the country amidst massive protests spread around the island and after protesters took over his official house and the President's Office, did not resign from his post as promised on July 9. The Speaker said that he had not received any communication from the President so far.
Rajapaska, who fled the country in a plane belonging to the Sri Lanka Air Force to Maldives in early hours of Wednesday, is said to be planning to go to Singapore and then to a safer location in the Middle East. He has said that his resignation would be announced once he reaches his destination.