Royal People

A dedication to those wonderful people who served Royal Primary School & Royal College, in Sri Lanka, since 1835, and, who will be remembered for their committment, sincerety and unselfishness.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Mangala Samaraweera

Mangala Pinsiri Samawareera MP (born April 21, 1956) is a Sri Lankan politician and current member of parliament who served as the Minister of Foreign Affairs from 2005 to 2007. He created a stir in Sri Lankan politics when he was sacked as a minister by President Mahinda Rajapakse in 2007, after which he formed a new political party called the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (Mahajana) Wing.[1]

Personal life
Samaraweera is the son of late Mahanama Samaraweera, who was a Cabinet Minister in Sirimavo Bandaranaike's government, and Khema Samaraweera, a member of the Matara Urban Council. A graduate in Clothing Design and Technology from St. Martin's School of Art in London, he served as a design consultant to the National Design Center of Sri Lanka prior to his political career. He has remained a lifelong bachelor.

Political career
He was the Sri Lanka Freedom Party organizer for Sri Lanka's southern city Matara since 1983 and Assistant Secretary of the SLFP Coordinating Secretary of the Mother’s Front.

He first entered the Parliament of Sri Lanka as a representative of the Matara District in 1989, and was appointed the Minister of Post & Telecommunications in the cabinet of President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga in 1994. He also served as the Minister of Urban Development, Construction and Public Utilities in the same Cabinet after a reshuffle and was later given the Deputy Minister of Finance portfolio.

Following the election defeat of his party in 2001, he was made the Chief Opposition Whip and the Treasurer of the SLFP. In 2004 he became the Minister of Ports, Aviation and Media in the new cabinet of President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga.

In June 2005, after conflicts with Kumaratunga, he dropped the Media Ministry, but remained Minister of Ports and Aviation. He became the campaign manager for Presidential candidate and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse. When Rajapakse won and took office in November 2005, he surprised many by appointing Samaraweera to the additional post of Foreign Minister; Samaraweera maintained his other posts.

In late January 2007 Samaraweera was replaced as Foreign Minister, but remained Minister of Ports and Aviation.[2] On 9th February 2007, he was sacked from the cabinet together with ministers Anura Bandaranaike and Sripathi Sooriyarachchi after falling out with the president. He then went on to create a new political party, the SLFP (Mahajana) wing.

^ Daily Mirror, SLFP (M) unveils ‘policy’
^ "Sri Lankan president reshuffles cabinet", Xinhua (People's Daily Online), January 29, 2007.
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