UNP proposes referendum to Extend Presidential and Parliamentary terms by two years

Palitha Range Bandara

The United National Party (UNP), led by President Ranil Wickremesinghe, has proposed a referendum to extend the terms of both the Sri Lankan President and Parliament by two years.

This suggestion was made today (May 28) by UNP General Secretary Palitha Range Bandara.

“Extending the terms of the President and Parliament by two more years through a referendum is the best option at this moment to save the nation. The Government has reached agreements with the IMF, World Bank, and other donors on economic reforms, and it is essential to extend the terms of the President and Parliament to make this exercise a success. Stabilizing the economy is more important than anything,” Range Bandara told the media.

“We propose a referendum to extend the terms of the President and Parliament as it is the most democratic way to do it,” he added.

Speaking to reporters in Colombo, Range Bandara emphasized that Sri Lanka has faced economic adversity but has taken resolute measures to steer away from the brink, yielding significant victories.

“We have regained international trust, stabilized the economy, and provided relief to our citizens,” he asserted.

He highlighted that administrative reforms have streamlined governance and the education system has returned to normalcy.

Range Bandara credited these achievements to the current President’s leadership and stressed that the country’s current needs do not align with an immediate Presidential or Parliamentary election.

Instead, he called on all members of Parliament to support a proposal to extend the President’s term by two years, along with a corresponding extension of the current Parliament’s tenure.

He urged unity across party lines, including support from opposition leader Sajith Premadasa.

During these challenging times, Range Bandara emphasized a prudent approach, suggesting that deferring both the Presidential and Parliamentary elections by two years, with the option of a referendum if necessary, would be the best course of action.