Former Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was once again sworn in to the post, in front of President Maithripala Sirisena, at the presidential secretariat in Colombo on Sunday morning. Only a few legislators and officials were present at the closed-door ceremony, which the media was barred from attending, Ada Derana reported.
Wickremesinghe’s United National Party had on Saturday said it was ready to work with Sirisena, who it claimed had been “misled by some groups”, PTI reported. The party praised the president’s decision to reappoint Wickremesinghe after former Prime Minister Rajapaksa resigned on Saturday. “This showed the true character of the president,” the party’s deputy leader Sajith Premadasa said.
On Sunday, United National Party supporters gathered outside the presidential secretariat to celebrate Wickremesinghe’s reappointment.
India welcomed the resolution of the political crisis in Sri Lanka. “It’s a reflection of the maturity demonstrated by all political forces, and also of the resilience of Sri Lankan democracy and its institutions,” said Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar, according to ANI.
Kumar said India is committed to taking forward its “people-oriented development projects” in Sri Lanka and is confident that the relations between the two countries will “move on an upward trajectory”.
The island country had been in a state of political turmoil since Sirisena ousted Wickremesinghe and replaced him with Mahinda Rajapaksa, a former president, on October 26. He suspended Parliament to prevent a vote, then lifted the suspension, but dissolved it again in November and called for snap elections on January 5. Rajapaksa’s government has lost two trust motions in Parliament. On Thursday, the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka ruled that Sirisena’s decision to dissolve Parliament was illegal and unconstitutional.