Posted on August 20th, 2009

By Walter Jayawardhana

President Mahinda Rajapaksa declared yesterday that by giving an overwhelming majority to the ruling party after the routing of terrorists in Sri Lanka the people have endorsed bringing the country under one flag.

“Uva was the first election held after completely defeating the terrorists in the country. The overwhelming victory at the first election shows the people have wholeheartedly endorsed the policies of the government of bringing this country under one flag and a unitary government,” said President Rajapaksa speaking at the oath taking ceremony of the newly elected members and the board of ministers, at the Presidential Secretariat yesterday.

The newly elected members along the ministers and the Chief Minister Shashindra Rajapaksa were sworn in by the President.

The President addressing the distinguished gathering said the ruling party one by one won all the Provincial Council elections beginning from the Eastern Provincial Council. People endorsed the policies of the government at North Central, North Western, Central, Western and now at Uva Provincial Council elections.

The President said whether they were held one after the other or whether they were held together the results would have been the same.

He said the ruling coalition he headed won those elections since they were able to win the confidence of the people by fulfilling the election pledges contained in the Mahinda Chinthanaya manifesto.

He said Uva happened to be the first election held after bringing the country under one flag. The results showed the reason why the government won.

The people have sacrificed a lot to bring the country to this stage. He reminded the newly elected individuals the ministerial and other positions did not belong to them personally but to the country and and they should serve accordingly.

Shashindra Rajapaksa also took oaths as Minister for Finance and Planning, Law and Peace, Education, Local Government, Cultural Affairs, Transport, Lands, Irrigation, Economic Development and Infrastructure Development and Construction.

Anura Ravindra Withanagamage was sworn-in as Minister for Agriculture, Agrarian Development, Animal Feed Production, Inland Fisheries, Environment and Tourism.

R.M. Kumarasiri Ratnayake is the Minister for Road Development, Housing, Water Supply, Consumer Affairs and Cooperatives, Food Supplies and Distribution.

The Minister for Health, Indigenous Medicine, Probation and Childcare and Women’s Affairs of the Uva Provincial Council is A.M. Buddhadasa.

Senthil Thondaman is the Minister for Youth Affairs, Sports, Social Welfare, Estate Infrastructure Development, Power and Energy, Textile Industries and Small Industries.

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