Ranil says would vote in favour of ‘displeasure motion’

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Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday (17), claimed that he would vote in favour of the Motion to express displeasure against President Gotabaya Rajapaksa presented by the Opposition.

He was clarifying his stance on the vote on suspending Standing Orders and taking the Motion for debate in the House yesterday (17) on the basis of urgency. The proposal moved by ITAK MP M.A. Sumanthiran to take the NCM yesterday (17) was rejected by a majority of 51 votes. Wickremesinghe voted to reject Sumanthiran’s proposal along with the SLPP.

“This was not a vote on the Motion of Displeasure against the President. This was a vote to suspend all Parliamentary proceedings and immediately debate the Motion of Displeasure. Now the President’s MPs would use the defeat of this vote as an opportunity to block the Motion of Displeasure being taken up at a later date. It would be best if the Opposition used a better strategic approach going forward. Nevertheless, wish to reaffirm our commitment to vote in favour of the motion as communicated earlier last week,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister explained that he has requested a full report from the IGP on the attack on the GotaGoGama protesters.

He also stated that it was he who first recommended that a female MP be nominated to the post of Deputy Speaker, and had requested Parliament to come to a unanimous decision.

Wickremesinghe explained he has not attended either the Opposition Parliamentary Group meeting or the Parliamentary Group Meeting; he was still seated in the centre.

He requested that a new Code of Conduct and a Parliamentary Standards Act be presented. If this is not done, the confrontational culture of Parliament will not change and by the next time around MPs might not be allowed to attend Parliament.

BY Gagani Weerakoon and Methmalie Dissanayake