Dissident SLMC MPs sworn in as ministers
[TamilNet, Saturday, 30 October 2004, 18:02 GMT]
Mr.Najeeb Majeed, Mr.Rishard Badiudin and Mr.Ameer Ali, dissident
parliamentarians of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) Saturday afternoon were sworn in as Ministers without cabinet rank by Sri Lanka's President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge. With these appointments, total number of ministers, ministers without cabinet rank and deputy ministers has risen to 76, parliamentary sources said.
Mr.Najeeb Majeed was elected from Trincomalee electoral district,
Mr.Rishard Badiudin from Vanni district and Mr.Ameer Ali from Amparai district at the 2004 April general election on the SLMC ticket.
Mr.Najeeb Majeed has been appointed Minister for Trincomalee District Rehabilitation and Development, Mr.Rishard Badiudin for Vanni Rehabilitation and Development and Mr.Ameer Ali for Amparai Rehabilitation and Development.
The new ministers later addressed a press briefing. They said they would sit in the parliament as a separate group led by Minister Mr.Najeeb Majeed. They further said another SLMC parliamentarian Mr.Faizal Cader would also join their dissident group shortly.
The new ministers called for the resignation of Mr.Rauff Hakim from the leadership of SLMC to safeguard the party from being disintegrated further. "We dissidents are not against the SLMC policy but we oppose the present leadership," said dissident SLMC parliamentarians at the press briefing.