Strongman leader steps down as Supreme Court bans his purported government from exercising powers of office. President Maithripala Sirisena will have to appoint a replacement to avert a possible government shutdown on January 1.
Sri Lanka's Supreme Court unanimously ruled as unconstitutional President Maithripala Sirisena's order to dissolve Parliament and call for fresh elections.
The island has been in crisis since President Maithripala Sirisena replaced Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe with Rajapaksa in October, and then issued an order dissolving parliament and called for a general election.
The move comes a day after lawmakers voted to cut off government money to the office of disputed prime minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.
Chaos continues a day after a fierce brawl between rival legislators paralysed work in the island country's parliament, part of wider constitutional crisis. Meanwhile, president rejects Rajapaksa no-confidence vote, again.
The past few weeks have thrown the Indian Ocean nation into political chaos as rival parties jockey for power. The constitutional crisis has put a spotlight on multiple political issues that have been simmering for a while.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya rules a majority of 225-member assembly supported motion against president's chosen Mahinda Rajapakse who was made prime minister on October 26 in place of Ranil Wickremesinghe.
President Maithripala Sirisena on Friday dissolved parliament and called snap elections for January 5, two weeks after firing the prime minister.
Three parties have asked the Supreme Court to declare President Maithripala Sirisena's actions as illegal after the president dismissed the parliament.
Mangala Samaraweera from the country's largest United National party says the decision of President Maithripala Sirisena, who dismissed the entire parliament in a midnight manoeuvre, will be challenged in the court.
President Maithripala Sirisena signed a decree dismissing the island's 225-member assembly and scheduled parliamentary elections for January 5, nearly two years ahead of schedule.
The island nation has been engulfed in turmoil since President Maithripala Sirisena dismissed prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe last month and replaced him with former leader Mahinda Rajapaksa, triggering constitutional crisis and protests.
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