Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Search of Air Algerie crash site continues

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Sarkozy, Hollande and the scooter wars

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Confusion online over Air Algérie flight

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - July 25th, 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - July 25th, 2014

Read more

REPORTERS

Halal tourism on the rise

Read more

ENCORE!

Tunisia's Carthage International Festival turns 50

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

WWI Centenary: the battle for Verdun

Read more

THE BUSINESS INTERVIEW

When big companies want to do good

Read more

  • Photos: Youths clash with police at banned Gaza protest in Paris

    Read more

  • Limited 12-hour humanitarian truce takes effect in Gaza

    Read more

  • Germany's Tony Martin wins 20th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • US evacuates embassy in Libya amid militia clashes

    Read more

  • Kerry in Paris for new round of Gaza ceasefire talks

    Read more

  • Second black box found at Air Algérie crash site in Mali

    Read more

  • Nibali rides serenely toward a place in Tour history

    Read more

  • Video: 'Lack of security' at MH17 crash site, FRANCE 24 reports

    Read more

  • In pictures: Devastation, debris at Air Algérie crash site

    Read more

  • Washington Post reporter and his wife arrested in Iran

    Read more

  • French families grieve for Algerian plane crash victims

    Read more

  • Lithuania’s Navardauskas wins 19th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • LA Times wipes France off the map in air crash infographic

    Read more

  • Fans electrify the mood as Tour de France crosses the Pyrenees

    Read more

  • French lawyer files complaint against Israel at ICC

    Read more

  • Protest against Gaza offensive turns deadly in West Bank

    Read more

  • Halal tourism on the rise

    Read more

Asia-pacific

Ruling party wins first parliamentary elections since end of civil war

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-04-21

Sri Lanka's ruling party has won a near two-thirds majority in parliament at national polls, the elections commission said.

REUTERS - Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa's ruling coalition won the first parliamentary election since the end of a 25-year civil war, final election results showed on Wednesday.

Rajapaksa's ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) won 144 seats in the 225-member parliament, falling short by six seats of the two-thirds majority that would enable him to change the island nation's constitution.

Most political analysts expect the president to recruit legislators from other parties to give him the numbers to win the constitutional majority.
 
The final results were released after voting was re-run on Tuesday in two districts where ballots were annulled due to violence in the original April 8 vote.
 
The main opposition United National Party won 60 seats, while the former rebel party Tamil National Alliance secured 14 seats. The latter got most of its seats in the northern and eastern provinces, where the Tamil Tiger rebels fought for a separate state for the ethnic minority Tamils.
 
Election monitors reported no violence on Tuesday and no malpractice aside from the temporary barring of an opposition polling agent from a voting centre. Counting got under way immediately after polls closed in the late afternoon.
 
Keerthi Tennakoon of the Campaign for Free and Fair Elections said Nawalapitiya saw turnout of 55-60 percent of 50,000 registered voters. In the eastern district of Trincomalee, turnout was 46 percent of the roughly 1,000 voters.
 
The final results showed the overall voter turnout in the polls was 61.3 percent.
 
The election commission on Tuesday said Rajapaksa's UPFA won two seats in Trincomalee and eight seats in Kandy.
 
Edging towards a two-thirds majority
 
Rajapaksa fell short of six seats for a two-third majority, which he needs to change the constitution.
 
Hopes of him securing that outcome has already driven the surging Colombo Stock Exchange deeper into record territory, with gains of more than 170 percent since it hit a trough at the end of 2008. It closed at a new record of 4,044.94 on Tuesday.
 
Dealers in government securities say they expect increased demand after parliament passes the 2010 budget in either May or June, seen as crucial to retaining a $2.6 billion International Monetary Fund loan which has boosted foreign investor confidence.
 
The president, who won a landslide re-election in January, has pledged to turn his efforts toward economic reform and reconciliation after he led the nation to victory over the Tamil Tigers in a three-decade separatist war 11 months ago.
 
This week will see swift political action: the president is expected to name a drastically trimmed cabinet on Wednesday and parliament will open on Thursday. He is also expected to work on opposition crossovers to gain the two-thirds majority required to push through constitutional reforms.

 

Date created : 2010-04-21

  • SRI LANKA

    Ruling party cruises to victory in parliamentary polls

    Read more

  • SRI LANKA

    Opposition leader Fonseka faces court martial

    Read more

  • SRI LANKA

    Rajapakse beats former army chief to win second term

    Read more

COMMENT(S)