W. J. M. Lokubandara of the main opposition UNF was yesterday elected Sri Lanka’s 18h Speaker by one vote in a remarkable day for Parliament which saw three rounds of voting in a tense battle for the position.
The newly elected Parliament convened yesterday with the first order of the day being the appointment of the Speaker. The first round of voting in the morning was a tie with the two candidates securing 108 votes each. Mr.D E W Gunasekara was the UPFA’s nominee for the post. The second round was cancelled due to objections raised by government members.
Mr. Lokubandara was elected with 110 votes to 109 votes in the third round of voting to the esteemed post.
The new Speaker entered
mainstream politics in 1977 and held the positions of the
Chief Opposition Whip from 1994 to 2001, the Leader of the House in
2001 and the Minister of Justice, Law Reform, National Integration and
Buddha Sasana during the last Parliament.
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