Rajapaksa can contest third term: Sri Lankan PM

The opposition, on the other hand, said that the incumbent president can only contest for two terms.

Updated - November 16, 2021 11:20 pm IST

Published - October 29, 2014 11:00 am IST - Colombo

Mahinda Rajapaksa

Mahinda Rajapaksa

Sri Lankan Prime Minister D.M. Jayaratne said President Mahinda Rajapaksa would be able to contest the upcoming presidential elections despite the opposition saying he does not have the legal right to do so.

Mr. Jayaratne said Mr. Rajapaksa will be able to contest for a third term in office as a result of the constitutional changes brought in by the government through the parliament, Xinhua reported.

The Prime Minister Tuesday confirmed that presidential election would be held January next year.

The opposition, on the other hand, said that the incumbent president can only contest for two terms.

However, Mr. Jayaratne said there is enough legal backing to allow the president to contest for a third term despite arguments raised to the contrary by the opposition, some lawyers and monks.

Mr. Rajapaksa said he and his government would contest for a third term in office and win comfortably.

Mr. Jayaratne dismissed allegations that the President was taking decisions on his own on national issues.

He insisted that Mr. Rajapaksa sought cabinet approval on most decisions while parliament approval was also sought on issues when needed.

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