The former president Mahinda Rajapaksa rejected a court order issued by the Court of Appeal earlier today preventing Rajapaksa from functioning as prime minister and holding cabinet meetings.
Rajapaksa was appointed as prime minister in October by President Sirisena following the sacking of the UNP leader, Ranil Wickremesinghe as premier.
"We are not in agreement with the interim stay order issued by the Appeal Court suspending the functioning of the Cabinet of Ministers," Rajapaksa said in a statement today, pledging to lodge an appeal with the Supreme Court tomorrow.
"The struggle to establish political stability in this country through the holding of a General Election needs the support of the people more than ever at this moment," he added.
Issuing today's interim stay order, Judge Preethipadhman Surasena said the stay was issued as "irreversible damage could be caused" if Rajapaksa continued to function as Sri Lanka’s prime minister.
“An interim order is granted against the first respondent functioning as the prime minister...also issuing interim order against 30 other respondents functioning in their offices,” the judge said.