Sri Lankan president vows to fight corruption

Colombo, Sep 1 (IANS) Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has said that the battle against corruption will continue even as a new united government began work on Tuesday.

Addressing parliament which convened after the August 17 elections, Sirisena said he will continue with the work he started after winning the January 8 presidential election, Xinhua news agency reported.

“My government will continue to crack down on corruption and punish those who exploit national resources no matter who they are. There will be no political interference in the appointment of officials,” he said.

He added that the new government would focus on an Asia-centric foreign policy and would aim to maintain good relations with all countries.

He extended an open invitation to Sri Lankan professionals working overseas to return to the country and contribute to its economy.

Sirisena arrived in parliament to officially inaugurate the sessions and was greeted by the new speaker, Karu Jayasuriya.

Earlier, 225 members took oath before the speaker. The United National Party (UNP) of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe won the parliamentary polls to form a new government.

The UNP defeated the main opposition United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) by winning 106 seats. The UPFA got 95 seats.

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