Lankan leader to convene parliament next week

Sri Lanka,Ranil Wickremesinghe,Maithripala Sirisena

UN Secretary General asks Sri Lanka's President to allow Parliament vote ASAP

The Tamil National Alliance's announcement comes as divergent political parties in Parliament try to thwart Mahinda Rajapaksa from strengthening his position as prime minister.

Mahinda Rajapaksa - Sri Lanka's former strongman who was ousted as president in 2015 but has clawed his way back - can go home at night after passing decrees from his new desk at the prime ministerial office in Sir Ernest de Silva Mawatha (formerly Flower Road).

Namal's comments are aimed at persuading the legislators in Sri Lanka's main Tamil party - Tamil National Alliance (TNA) - to switch their allegiance to Rajapaksa in his bid to prove majority in the parliament. Since then, party rivalries have simmered within the government, with Rajapaksa leading a splinter Freedom Party group. When neither major party received a clear majority in parliamentary elections, Sirisena's party signed an agreement with Ranil Wickremesinghe's party to form a unity government.

The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) party, which has seven lawmakers, said its members had also rejected offers to join the Sirisena-Rajapakse camp. Moreover, Wickremesinghe's popularity began to wane after his government signed an agreement giving a Chinese company an 80% stake and a 99-year lease of a failing port, seeing it as a way to avoid defaulting on Chinese loans.

Wickremesinghe said in an interview with The Associated Press that there is credible evidence that Rajapaksa's party is attempting to buy support in Parliament.

In almost nine decades of universal adult suffrage in Sri Lanka, Asia's oldest democracy has been no stranger to insurgency, civil war, assassinations and suicide bombers.

An island nation with an economy that's mainly reliant on tourism and tea exports, Sri Lanka's blessed geography puts it at a crucial juncture of the busy shipping lanes of the Indian Ocean.

Premajayantha said that parliament needed time to prepare to meet and there was not enough time to meet on November 5. Parliament will be reconvened on the 5th of November. Thousands of Sri Lankans also protested in the capital in the past week demanding Sirisena immediately convene Parliament. Sirisena replaced Prime Minister Wickremesinghe for Rajapaksa last Friday, and suspended the Parliament after Wickremesinghe sought an emergency session to prove his majority in the legislature.

Latest News