Ravi to get Power & Energy in new Cabinet ?


President Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and MPs of the United National Front (UNF) have arrived at the Presidential Secretariat for the swearing in of the new Cabinet.

Meanwhile speculation is rife that former finance minister Ravi Karunanayake is also expected to be given a ministerial portfolio.

According to sources, he will receive the portfolio of Power and Renewable Energy.

UNF MPs Mangala Samaraweera, Dr. Rajith Senaratne and Patali Champika Ranawaka are expected to receive the same portfolios previously held by them in the former government.

Arjuna Ranatunga will reportedly receive the portfolio of Transport Minister while Samagala Ratnayake will likely receive the Ministry of Ports and Shipping.

Harin Fernanado will likely be sworn in as the Minister of Foreign Employment and Sports while Kabir Hashim will be appointed Minister of Highways and Petroleum Resources Development.

Gamini Jayawickrama Perera will be the new Minister of Buddhasasana and Wayamba Development and P. Harrison the Minister of Social Empowerment, sources said.

MP Ranjith Madduma Bandara will be sworn in as the new Law and Order Minister, according to sources.

According to political sources, MP Sajith Premadasa is to be given the Ministries of Cultural Affairs and Housing, while MP Kabir Hashim is to receive the Ministry of Petroleum Resource Development.

Political further noted that UNP MP Wasantha Senanayake will not be assigned a ministerial portfolio and that the President had not decided on appointing him as a Cabinet Minister as of yesterday.

Furthermore, MP Harin Fernando is to be given the Ministry of Foreign Affairs while MP Gayantha Karunatileka is to be assigned the Ministry of Parliament Reforms and Lands.

Meanwhile, MP Rajitha Senaratne and MP Akila Viraj Kariyawasam are to take oaths of the same ministerial portfolios that they had been assigned before; Ministry of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine and Ministry of Education respectively.

Around 20 Cabinet Ministers are expected to be sworn in this morning while the first Cabinet meeting is also scheduled to be held today.

In accordance with the Constitution, the number of cabinet ministers in the United National Front-led government will be limited to 30 as there is no longer a national government.

The President will hold the portfolios of Defense, Mahaweli Development and Environment ministries.

Political sources further say that that the President would not be granting ministerial positions for the MPs who crossed over to the UNF from UPFA.

MPs Lakshman Seneviratne, Vijith Vijithamuni de Zoysa, Piyasena Gamage and A.H.M. Fowzie recently crossed over to the government.