Former PM Ratnasiri Wickremanayake passes away

Former PM Ratnasiri Wickremanayake passes away

December 27, 2016   01:10 pm

- By Yusuf Ariff

Former Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, Ratnasiri Wickremanayake, has passed away at the age of 83.

He had been admitted to the intensive care unit of a private hospital on December 21.

The remains will be kept at the Parliament Complex from 10.30am to 11.30am tomorrow (28) for MPs to pay their final respects. 

“Veteran Politician Ratnasiri Wickremanayake was loved by his people for many decades. My condolences are with his loved ones and followers,” President Maithripala Sirisena wrote on Twitter.

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa also tweeted his condolences: “Deeply saddened by the death of former Sri Lankan PM & veteran politician Ratnasiri Wickremanayake. My condolences to his family.”

Wickramanayake is a senior member of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and was serving as a senior advisor to President Maithripala Sirisena.

Ratnasiri Wickremanayake was appointed Prime Minister by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa on 21st November 2005. He had earlier held the position of Prime Minister from August 2000 - December 2001, succeeding Prime Minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike who resigned at the age of 84. 

He entered politics in 1960 winning the Horana seat in the March General Election as a member of the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna (MEP).

Later in 1970, he was appointed Deputy Minister, Justice and went on to be the General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) in 1977.

In the 1994 General Election, he won the Kalutara District seat and was appointed as the Minister of Public Administration, Home Affairs and Plantation Industries and the Leader of the House in President Chandrika Kumaranatunge’s Cabinet.

His son Vidura Wickremanayake is also a member of the parliament.

UPDATE: Former Prime Minister late Ratnasiri Wickremanayake’s funeral will be held on 31st December in Horana, MP Vidura Wickremanayake said.

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