The victory of the coalition of parties with the ungainly name of United National Front for Good Governance (UNFGG) led by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe in Monday’s General Election will ensure that the changes brought about at the Presidential Election of January 2015 will be sustained. He’s operating for a parliamentary seat in a bid to be named prime minister if his Sri Lanka Freedom Celebration wins a majority.
Wickremsinghe, a lawmaker since 1977, has already served three times as prime minister, a position second to the president in Sri Lanka.
Wimal Weerawansa came first for the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) with 313,801 votes. The extensive network of patronage from which Rajapaksa family and friends benefited will have to be dismantled.
The number falls short of a majority, but a pledge of “issue-based” support from the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), which holds the balance of power with 16 seats, will allow the party to carry out promised political and economic reforms.
In a statement on Wednesday, Rajapakse congratulated the premier, saying “I accept with humility the result of the parliamentary election”.
Former president and UPFA Kurunegala district MP Mahinda Rajapaksa has also attended the swearing-in ceremony.
European Union monitors said the elections were “well-administered and offered voters a genuine choice from among a broad range of political alternatives, although campaign rules were restrictive”.
A group of Sirisena supporters is likely to join a broad-based national unity government led by Wickremesinghe. An earlier cohabitation between a president and a prime minister elected from different parties ended after bickering. For now the only contender is a Marxist party, with just six seats.
“The main reason for this was the sense of insecurity felt by the ethnic and religious minorities during his period, with the rise in attacks against the Muslims, their places of religious worship and businesses by nationalist Buddhist monks, accompanied by police inaction”, he said.
When Rajapaksa was in power, Chinese government companies won multiple contracts to construct huge infrastructure projects.
People gather on Galle Face Green as commercial buildings in the central business district stand in the background in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
The modifications have been hailed by the U.S. and India, the regional energy that was irked by Rajapaksa’s hard-line stance towards Tamils – a politically influential minority in India – and his friendship with China, which has lengthy sought a foothold within the area. This will make it difficult for the new government to tackle the fundamental problems of the country. The question would then be asked if Ranil and the UNP really won this time, too – or, could have won without the smaller, “minority” parties.
“The idea is that there is a new ministry which will help speed up the monetary and fiscal reforms to achieve the economic targets of the new government”, the official said asking not to be named.