Six ministers of President Maithripala Sirisena-led unity government in Sri Lanka resigned today, days after they voted in favour of a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.
The ministers from the Sirisena-led ruling Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), which is a coalition partner in the unity government with the Wickremesinghe-led United National Party (UNP), sent their resignation to the President late last night.
The other ministers who have resigned include Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara, Minister of Social Empowerment and Welfare S B Dissanayake, Labour Minister John Seneviratne, Minister of Science, Technology and Research Susil Premajayantha and Minister of Skills Development and Vocational Training Chandima Weerakkody.
Yapa and the five ministers had voted against Wickremesinghe in the last week's no trust motion brought by former President Mahinda Rajapaska-led Joint Opposition (JO), following which the UNP members had been demanding their ouster from the government.
Yapa said they were aware that it was not ethical for them to remain in the Cabinet after voting against the prime minister.
The other SLFP ministers, who had remained absent from the House during the no-confidence motion, will remain in the government, sources said.
Meanwhile, President Sirisena today appointed four acting ministers and made them in charge of departments held by the six SLFP ministers.
A major Cabinet reshuffle is expected after next week, a media release from Sirisena's office said.
The SLFP will formally decide next week if it should leave the unity government, the party sources said.
Sirisena immediately urged the resignation of Wickremesinghe but he resisted.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)