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* Discussions with President to form a UNP government - report
Tue, Feb 13, 2018, 12:39 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Feb 13, Colombo: It is reported that the United National Party (UNP), the majority party in Sri Lanka parliament, is making a decision to form a UNP government ending the coalition rule.

A Minister representing the United National Party has told BBC Sinhala Service that following the discussion with the President Maithripala Sirisena on Monday, the UNP senior members met at the Finance and Mass Media Minister Mangala Samaraweera's house on Monday night and discussed forming a UNP government at length.

According to the source, no decision was taken at the meeting to remove Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe from his post. It has been decided that the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLPF) which received only 12 percent of the vote at Saturday's local government elections has no right to take a decision to remove the Prime Minister and such a decision should be made by the UNP.

However, a senior member of the SLFP has affirmed the BBC Sinhala service that the President had firmly informed the UNP that Ranil Wickremesinghe should leave the post of Prime Minister and appoint another UNP member.

Meanwhile, the UNP at the meeting last night has concluded that the SLFP should decide whether to stay in coalition government with the UNP or leave it.

However, the cabinet ministers representing the United National Party are scheduled to meet the President tonight to discuss the situation further, said the minister who spoke to BBC Sinhala service.

Prior to meeting with the President, they will meet at the Temple Trees.

Meanwhile, in response to the UNP's claim that a single party government will be formed with the SLFP members, who are willing to join them, the President yesterday has said that he will not give ministerial portfolios those SLFP members.

The leader of the main Tamil party, Tamil national Alliance (TNA) R Sampanthan has reportedly said that TNA is willing to support a United National Front government led by the UNP but would not accept any ministerial portfolios.

 

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