According to a Sri Lankan MP, former president of Sri Lanka Gotabaya Rajapaksa is scheduled to fly back from Singapore.
On Tuesday, Bandula Gunawardena, the spokesperson for the cabinet, told reporters that Mr. Rajapaksa was not hiding but it was unknown when he would return. After widespread agitation over an economic crisis, the former president left Sri Lanka.
Many protesters claim he mismanaged the country’s budget, causing the prices of necessities to skyrocket. On July 13, Mr. Rajapaksa departed Sri Lanka for the Maldives before traveling to Singapore on July 14.
Shortly after his arrival, he presented his resignation, which was formally accepted by the Sri Lankan cabinet on July 15. Along with his wife, the former president traveled with two bodyguards. As a head of state, he is no longer immune from prosecution.
The New Development
The former president reportedly did not request political asylum when he came, according to Singapore. Initially, Mr. Rajapaksa had been given a 14-day visa to visit Singapore. However, that has now been extended by an additional 14 days, local media in Singapore reported on Wednesday.
Since then, rumours have abounded over his likely intentions, with some speculating that he would go to the United Arab Emirates. However, Mr. Rajapaksa was eager to return to Colombo, according to an unnamed Sri Lankan source quoted by Bloomberg.
After that, Mr. Gunawardena informed the media on Tuesday that “to my knowledge, he is expected to return back.” Sri Lankans attribute their worst economic catastrophe in decades to Mr. Rajapaksa’s leadership.
They have endured regular power outages for months and a lack of necessities like fuel, food, and medicine. Ranil Wickremesinghe, a close supporter of Mr. Rajapaksa’s who was elected president last week by lawmakers despite widespread public disapproval in Sri Lanka, has taken over as president.