Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has named as widely expected in Sri Lankan political circles, his elder brother and former strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa as the new prime minister. This appointment comes after incumbent Ranil Wickremesinghe announced his resignation from the post following the election debacle.
Mahinda, the current main opposition leader, will assume duties soon after incumbent Wickremesinghe steps down formally on Thursday.
Mahinda was appointed the Prime Minister on October 26, 2018 by the then President Maithripala Sirisena, who sacked Wickremesinghe in a controversial move that plunged the country into an unprecedented constitutional crisis.
He resigned in December as two crucial Supreme Court decisions made the former strongman’s efforts to cling to premiership untenable.
The apex court later unanimously declared that the dissolution of Parliament by Sirisena was “illegal”.
Mahinda won power in 2005 and went on to become South Asia’s longest-serving leader. He became the country’s youngest ever parliamentarian in 1970 at the age of 24.