Maithri Palas promoted on posters in every corner of the island will soon disappear. Mahinda Rajapaksa, known until now as the King of Sri Lanka, has taken early Friday his defeat in the presidential election. Farewell to the third term he wanted.

“The president recognizes the defeat and ensures that there will be a peaceful transition of power yielding to the wishes of the people, ” said his press secretary, Vijayananda Herath.

The announcement of the failure -adelantándose the publication of results and the officers of a peaceful transfer is a relief for those who predicted that Rajapaksa would not grant his throne for right after an election campaign marked by violence.

“I think people need a change, and that is a democracy,” said a senior hitherto close to President official. After meeting with Ranil Wickremesinghe, one of the opposition leaders is emerging as the new prime minister; Rajapaksa has abandoned its official unattainable understand that there is a difference with his older candidate residence.

Without naming at any time, the outgoing president refers to Maithripala Sirisena, who this afternoon will be sworn in as president on Independence Square. “I respectfully thank the thousands of Sinhalese who kept their faith in me. Let us go to a compassionate era,” said the winner on its website.

The Elections

sri_lanka_peaceElection Day on Thursday did not live large altercations and proceeded normally. 15 million people were called to the polls, and around 80% went to vote, reflecting a high turnout.

The results provided by the Electoral Commission show that 51.3% of the votes (6,200,000) have gone to Sirisena and 47.6% (5,760,000) Rajapaksa.

“My particular thanks to former President Rajapaksa, ” said the winner after the results before calling the unit: “I would ask everyone to celebrate the victory peacefully and not participating in clashes.”

Maithri Palas – Sirisena, New President

  • He is minister of the government Health Rajapaksa spent only two months ago to be the candidate of the opposition in charge of the New Democratic Front (NDF), Union of almost 50 parties of the center-right, Marxists, ethnic and religious with a single purpose: take the King’s throne he held for a decade.
  • Following that change sides, ‘traitor’ and ‘Judas’ became the most common references between supporters of the ruling.
  • “I left because I could not take it anymore with a leader who had pillaged the country, the government, and national wealth,” he said Sirisena.
  • Behind him, another 25 ruling party members defected to the opposition.
  • During the campaign, Sirisena pledged to rid the country of corruption and reduce the power that captured the presidency in recent years.
  • The outgoing president, accused of growing authoritarianism, had removed the two – term limit to aspire to a third party and had been awarded powers that questioned the independence of institutions such as justice or police.

Sirisena harshly criticized nepotism practiced by Rajapaksa, whose brothers and sons are in the major government positions. “All aspects of society are controlled by his family, ” he said when presenting his candidacy.

One of the allies winner, also Rajitha Senaratne deserter former minister, commented that his campaign was inspired by the Indian Narendra Modi when attacking the dynastic politics of the Nehru-Gandhi. In the morning, the Indian president said on Twitter that he has spoken with Sirisena and congratulated him on his victory.

Unchanged for Minorities

Sirisena, 63, belongs to the Sinhalese majority that dominates the island off the Tamil minority. Although it has picked up votes among the tremendously opposed Rajapaksa Tamil electorate, he has been equally blunt than its predecessor when refusing an international investigation into possible war crimes Army during the end of the war that killed 40,000 people. Nor it has led to an improvement of the situation of minorities, mainly Tamil and Muslim.

Rajapaksa presented to voters as “the devil you know” before the angel to know, he is gone. Leave the power he won in 2005 and 2010 boosted by the victory over the Tamil Tigers six years ago.

It is criticized for not achieving national reconciliation expected after the protracted conflict experienced Indian Island. During their mandates, the country has grown by around 7% and foreign debt has dropped, although the economy has become very dependent on China.

Only two months ago the now defeated it is not predicted a tragic end election. Speaking of his old friend, he commented on campaign Sirisena at a dinner November the president boasted of his future victory in the absence of a real opposition.

“When he said that no one would challenge him, I was beside him. I felt sorry for him,” she admitted the winner today.

Rajapaksa is a firm believer in astrology. State television, which is controlled entirely by the government, said the president decided to advance confident elections two years after going to the advice of his personal astrologer. “We expect a victory, a great triumph,” then said the leader. This time, the stars were wrong.

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