Sri Lanka Economic Crisis: President Gotabaya Rajapaksa revokes state of emergency

President Rajapaksa

Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa

Photo : AP

Colombo: Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on late Tuesday revoked the state of emergency, which was imposed on April 1. A gazette notification was issued in this regard. In the notification, President Rajapaksa said that the emergency rule ordinance would stand revoked from midnight of April 5.

The development came on the day when Sri Lanka’s president lost his parliamentary majority. The island nation is facing unprecedented shortages of food and fuel along with record inflation and blackouts. This has led to nationwide protests against the President and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

A total of 42 MPs announced that they would sit independently. Among the 42 MPs, 14 are from Sri Lanka Freedom Party, 10 belong to constituent parties of the government, and 12 are President Rajapaksa’s ruling party, Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP), MPs, reported Xinhua news agency.

Earlier in the day, the top medical union of the country declared a medical emergency. The Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) declared the medical crisis in Sri Lanka over a shortage of medicines in the island nation due to depleting foreign exchange reserves.

On Tuesday, Sri Lanka’s newly appointed Finance Minister Ali Sabry also resigned within aday of assuming the office amid growing public unrest over a worsening economic crisis. In a letter, Sabry said, “After much reflection and deliberation and taking into consideration the current situation I’m now of the view, for your Excellency to make suitable interim arrangements to navigate this unprecedented crisis.”

On Sunday night, Sri Lanka’s Cabinet of Ministers submitted their resignation. President Rajapaksa had sought to form a unity government to counter the economic crisis. However, the opposition rejected his appeal.