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Rajapaksa concedes defeat

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Former Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa

Former Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa on Tuesday conceded defeat in the keenly fought parliamentary elections….reports Asian Lite News

Former Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa
Former Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa

“My dream of becoming the prime minister has faded away,” Rajapaksa told AFP. “I am conceding we have lost a good fight.”

Elections to pick a new 225-seat parliament took place on Monday.

The First Result

Sri Lanka’s ruling UNF led by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Tuesday swept the parliamentary polls in the southern district of Galle, in a significant reversal of the 2010 result.

Sri Lankan Prime Minister and candidate of the ruling United National Party (UNP) Ranil Wickremesinghe (C) arrives at a polling station in Colombo, capital of Sri Lanka, on Aug. 17, 2015. Sri Lankan voters on Monday queued up to cast their votes for a parliamentary election amidst tight security to elect a new 225 member parliament and a new government.
Sri Lankan Prime Minister and candidate of the ruling United National Party (UNP) Ranil Wickremesinghe (C) arrives at a polling station in Colombo, capital of Sri Lanka, on Aug. 17

The first Result released by the Election Department showed that the United National Front had obtained 33,798 votes in Galle while the main opposition United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) got 19,613 votes, reports Xinhua news agency.

The Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) obtained 4,777 votes.

In the 2010 parliamentary elections, the opposition UPFA had won the Galle district with over 20,000 votes while the United National Party (UNP) had secured over 14,000 votes.

Initial postal vote results released early Tuesday for the eastern town of Trincomalee also showed the UNF leading with 5,212 votes while the UPFA polled in second with 2,894 votes.

But postal results for the southern coast of Hambantota, a stronghold of former Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa, saw the UPFA leading with 8,441 votes and the UNF with 5,955 votes.

More election results are expected to come in on Tuesday.

Sri Lanka’s parliamentary elections were held on Monday to elect a new government in the island nation.

The main battle is between the two main political parties, the UNF led by Wickremesinghe and the UPFA, which includes Rajapaksa as its main candidate.

Meanwhile, President Maithripala Sirisena sacked 13 members from his Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) central committee hours after a parliamentary election was concluded on Monday.

The move came after speculations that some senior SLFP members may attempt to remove Sirisena from the party following the election results on Tuesday, reported Xinhua news agency.

The president has already appointed new members to the central committee to replace those who have been sacked.

The president sent the list of the members removed to Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya late on Monday.