Published: Tue, November 19, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Sri Lanka's Rajapaksa in the lead in presidential election

Sri Lanka's Rajapaksa in the lead in presidential election

Rajapaksa scored 52.25% of the votes, the election body said.

In a separate Facebook post, Rakapaksa stated: "It's no overstatement: today we made history together".

Gotabaya Rajapaksa was the Sri Lanka's all powerful defence secretary when his brother Mahinda Rajapaksa was the country's President between 2005 to 2015. "Our vision for a better tomorrow, won the hearts and the minds of the people".

"Pakistan is confident that under his stewardship, Sri Lanka will continue its journey towards greater prosperity and peace", the statement added.

Out of 25 administrative districts, Gotabaya won 16: Kalutara, Galle, Matara, Hambantota, Monaragala, Ratnapura, Badulla, Kurunegala, Puttalam, Gampaha, Kandy, Matale, Polonnaruwa, Colombo, Kegalle and Anuradhapura.

Rajapaksa, who used national security as his election plank following the Easter attacks in April, however, failed to gain support from the country's north and east provinces which are dominant by Tamil and Muslim minorities due to his controversial record on human rights and dissent.

In the November 16 election, out of almost 16 million voters, 13,387,951 or 83.72 per cent were polled but 135,452 were marked as invalid by the Election Commission. Ahead of this weekend's election, NPR's Lauren Frayer talked to several Tamil mothers whose children are still missing after security forces led by Rajapaksa took them away before the end of the civil war more than a decade ago.

He appealed to Rajapaksa to ensure the democratic process of holding elections on time is followed. But differences between Sirisena and Wickremesinghe resulted in instability in Sri Lanka, something India has wished to avoid along its periphery.

ITV leaders’ debate will exclude views of Remain voters, High Court hears
He added: "The clear conclusion of both members of this court is that, viewed overall, these claims are not realistically arguable".

His tenure had been marked by the defeat of the Tamil Tigers in the longstanding civil war, but also with allegations of human rights violations of Tamil civilians and political dissidents. The troika had three senior personnel each from India and Sri Lanka on it to coordinate matters relating to the conduct of the war against the separatist militant group the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). For the presidential election, Rakapsa ran a nationalist campaign that similarly promised to crush religious extremism and increase security.

Premadasa conceded defeat to Rajapaksa, saying he would honor the decision of the people. He announced that he would step down as Deputy Leader of the ruling United National Party with immediate effect.

Gotabaya Rajapaksa has also explicitly said he would repeal Sri Lanka's commitment to a United Nations human rights agenda for reconciliation and accountability for atrocities committed in the civil war, describing it as "illegal".

Meanwhile several government ministers have chose to tender resignations from their ministerial portfolios.

Dubbed the "Terminator" by his own family, the 70-year-old retired lieutenant-colonel secured victory in the election by promising to fight corruption and make Sri Lanka safe seven months after Islamist extremist attacks killed 269 people.

The section of Muslims who voted HE.

A supporter waits with flowers outside the residence of Sri Lanka's former defense secretary and presidential candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa in Colombo, Sri Lanka on November 17, 2019.

Like this: