Home / News / World /  Ranil Wickremesinghe resigns as Prime Minister of Sri Lanka

After angry protestors on Saturday stormed inside the residence of Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in Colombo, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has also decided to resign as Prime Minister of Sri Lanka.

In a tweet, the Sri Lankan PM said," To ensure the continuation of the Government including the safety of all citizens I accept the best recommendation of the Party Leaders today, to make way for an All-Party Government. To facilitate this I will resign as Prime Minister."

"PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said he has informed the President that an All-Party Government must be formed. He said that there is a fuel crisis in the country, a food shortage and the World Food Program Director is due to arrive in the country," according to a statement by the PMO.

“When this Government resigns, it is essential that another Government be ready to immediately assume duties to ensure stability. It must be ensured that economic recovery such as the IMF discussions are not hindered,"the statement further added.

Wickremesinghe told party leaders he was taking the decision to step down in view of the fact that island-wide fuel distribution is due to recommence this week, the World Food Programme Director is due to visit the country this week and the debt sustainability report for the IMF is due to be finalised shortly.

So as to ensure the safety of the citizens, the prime minister said he is agreeable to this recommendation by the Opposition party leaders

Sri Lanka is suffering its worst economic crisis since gaining independence in 1948, which comes on the heels of successive waves of COVID-19, threatening to undo years of development progress and severely undermining the country's ability to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The oil supply shortage has forced schools and government offices to close until further notice. Reduced domestic agricultural production, a lack of foreign exchange reserves, and local currency depreciation have fuelled the shortages.

The worsening economic situation in the country has led to increasing tensions and over the last few weeks there were reports of several confrontations between individuals and members of the police force and the armed forces at fuel stations where thousands of desperate members of the public have queued for hours and sometimes days.

The economic crisis will push families into hunger and poverty - some for the first time - adding to the half a million people who the World Bank estimates have fallen below the poverty line because of the pandemic.

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