The former president, Mahinda Rajapaksa today assumed duties as a Opposition Leader, despite calls from the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) to not to allow him to take up the post.
Rajapaksa commenced his duties following a religious ceremony with Buddhist monks.
The TNA had said the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) “cannot be considered as a party in Opposition since the Leader of the UPFA is the Head of Government and the Head of the Cabinet of Ministers” and wrote to the European Union, the Commonwealth, the UN Secretary-General and the heads of Foreign Missions in Colombo over the issue.
Despite this, Speaker Jayasuriya recognised Rajapaksa in the post of Opposition leader, stating, “these are not matters coming under the purview of the Speaker to decide as per the Constitution as well as Standing Orders of Parliament”. “Those matters must be decided by the courts of law,” he added.