Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who fled the country when severe public protests broke out, has finally sent in his resignation. He emailed his resignation letter from Singapore, where is has gone to seek refuge after he fled to Male in the Maldives.
The resignation letter was sent to the Parliament Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena. His office is checking the legality of the document, according to media reports, but the speaker has said in public that he has received the resignation letter from President Rajapaksa.
At the same time, in an unusual move, Maldivian Majlis (Parliament) Speaker Mohamed Nasheed earlier announced that Sri Lankan President Rajapaksa has resigned.
On Saturday (July 9) Rajapaksa had announced that he would step down on July 13 after thousands of protesters stormed his official residence, blaming him for the unprecedented economic crisis that has brought the country to its knees. Instead, Gotabaya fled to the Maldives without resigning from his office. From the Maldives, he went to Singapore on Thursday.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, who is now Acting President, has already said he was willing to resign and make way for an all-party government to take over. The Parliament will elect a new president within 30 days from one of its members, who will hold the office for the remaining two years of the current term.