FORMER SRI LANKAN PRESIDENT SWORN IN AS NEW PRIME MINISTER
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COLOMBO, Former Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse was sworn in as the new prime minister at the Presidential Secretariat in capital Colombo on Friday, a government official said.
Rajapakse took the oath in front of President Maithripala Sirisena shortly after the Sirisena-led United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) withdrew from the national coalition government.
Sirisena sacked Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and appointed Rajapakse as the new prime minister after UPFA's withdrawal, according to local media reports.
The coalition government consisted of the UPFA and the United National Party (UNP), led by Wickremesinghe.
Meanwhile, Finance Minister and UNP legislator Mangala Samaraweera in a statement called the appointment of Rajapakse "unconstitutional," while another cabinet minister said UNP would challenge the move in court.
Wickremesinghe was quoted by local media as saying that "I am still the Prime Minister."
UPFA General Secretary Mahinda Amaraweera said that Speaker of Parliament Karu Jayasuriya had been informed of UPFA'a decision.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK