UNF wins Sri Lanka polls

Colombo, Aug 18 (IANS) Sri Lanka’s ruling United National Front (UNF) on Tuesday won the parliamentary elections, securing 106 seats in the 225-member parliament.

According to final results, the UNF led by Ranil Wickremesinghe fell just seven seats short of a parliamentary majority, reports Xinhua news agency.

But members from the opposition Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) loyal to President Maithripala Sirisena are expected to pledge their support to the UNF this week to give it a clear majority.

The opposition United People’ s Freedom Alliance (UPFA), whose main candidate was former president Mahinda Rajapakse, got 93 seats in Monday’s polls.

National list slots for each party are expected to be announced once the preferential votes for each candidate is discussed by the parties.

The main Tamil party, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), won 14 seats in the northern district of Jaffna. The Marxist group, the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna, got four seats.

The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and the Eelam People’s Democratic Party (EPDP) won one seat each.

Wickremesinghe’s UNF won in 11 of the country’s 22 districts while the UPFA triumphed in eight and the TNA in three districts.

The UNF secured 5,098,927 votes (45.66 percent) followed by the UPFA with 4,732,669 votes (42.38 percent). The JVP secured 543,944 votes (4.87 percent) and the TNA obtained 515,963 (4.62 percent) votes.

Wickremesinghe has said he will form a national government with the opposition and minority parties.

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