Colombo: Mahinda Rajapaksa, who was appointed prime minister in a controversial move, will resign on Saturday, his son announced Friday, shortly after the Supreme Court refused to stay a court order that restrained the embattled former strongman from holding the office until it fully heard the case next month.

Rajapaksa was appointed as the premier on October 26 by President Maithripala Sirisena after sacking Ranil Wickremesinghe, plunging the nation into a constitutional crisis. “To ensure stability of the nation, Former President @PresRajapaksa has decided to resign from the Premiership tomorrow after an address to the nation," Rajapaksa’s son Namal tweeted.

The Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) with former president, Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and others will “now work to form a broader political coalition with President Sirisena", Namal, who is also a lawmaker, added.

The apex court’s latest ruling came a day after it unanimously declared that the dissolution of Parliament by President Maithripala Sirisena was “illegal", in a body blow to the embattled leader, whose controversial decisions plunged the island nation into an unprecedented political turmoil.

The Supreme Court decided that a Court of Appeal order issued against the appointment of Rajapaksa as Prime Minister and against his Cabinet from holding office will stand.

The appeal filed by Rajapaksa will be taken up for hearing on January 16, 17 and 18.

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