First Tamil to lead Sri Lanka opposition in 32 years
A Tamil lawmaker is to lead the opposition in Sri Lanka’s parliament for the first time in 32 years, the speaker of the House said Thursday.
Rajavarothiam Sampanthan is the first lawmaker from the ethnic minority to lead the opposition since 1983, when Tamil legislators resigned en masse to protest against a new statute that compelled them to denounce separatism.
The 82-year-old heads the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), which emerged from last month’s election as the third-largest party with 16 seats in the 225-member assembly.
The United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA), which previously made up the opposition, has joined Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s United National Party (UNP) in government. Details