The Inter University Students Federation (IUSF) in Sri Lanka has called for massive protests in Colombo and other parts of the island nation on Tuesday, July 19.
The IUSF has urged trade unions and other bodies to join the protests. The protesters claim that their task is incomplete even with Gotabaya Rajapksa’s resignation as President of Sri Lanka.
They are against Prime Minister Ranil Wickeremsinghe, who as acting President declared emergency amid protests over economic crisis, being a part of the electoral process to elect the next leader of Sri Lanka.
On Tuesday, protesters are set to march through Colombo to the protest centre and the presidential palace, which was taken over by protesters forcing Gotabaya Rajapaksa to flee Lanka to Maldives and then to Singapore.
Earlier, PM Wickremesinghe, who is one of the contenders for the post of President, highlighted the steps taken so far and said that negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) were nearing conclusion, and discussions for assistance with foreign countries were also progressing.
At least four candidates are in the race to become the new President who will serve the remaining tenure of Rajapaksa till November 2024. The voting in parliament is to take place on Wednesday.
Besides Wickremesinghe and Premadasa, Marxist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake and Dullas Alahapperuma are the other two leaders who have so far announced their candidacy to contest the vote in Parliament.
Sri Lanka is facing its worst economic crisis in seven decades, with a severe foreign exchange shortage preventing the nation from buying food, fuel and medicines from other nations. The economic crisis also sparked a political crisis in the country as protesters stormed presidential palace, set PM’s residence on fire, demanding the resignation of both Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Ranil Wickremesinghe.