Written by Tharushan Fernando
02 Sep, 2015 | 10:19 pm
As the Sri Lanka Freedom Party celebrates 64 years since its inception, News1st looks into the history of the party.Founded on a day like today by the fourth Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike, the Sri Lanka Freedom Party was created on the basis of the Pancha Maha Balavegaya or Five Great Forces.
Within a short span of time, following its inception, S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike was successful in making the party one of main opposition parties in the country.
In 1956, S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike was elected Prime Minister after the Sri Lanka Freedom Party contested the General Election together with several other partie,s as one powerful force, under the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna and won.
However, Bandaranaike’s life was cut short, as he was assassinated, making the future journey of his party riddled by challenges. Later, it was his widow wife, Sirimavo Bandaranaike who took on the reigns of the party.
Sirimavo Bandaranaike who was determined to carry on the programme of her late husband, received the honour of being elected as the first female prime minister in the world.
The Sri Lanka Freedom Party was successfully able to hold power in government in the elections in 1960, 1965, 1970 and 1977.
The party which faced numerous hardships after the year 1977, was given new strength and hope in 1994 by the daughter of S.W.R.D. and Sirimavo Bandaranaike, Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, who went on to be elected the nation’s President.
The Sri Lanka Freedom Party turned to new avenues with Mahinda Rajapaksa who won the 2005 Presidential Election being appointed as the leader of the party. The Rajapaksa regime was successful in ending the thirty-year long civil conflict in the country and brought honour to the history of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party.
In January 2015, Maithripala Sirisena made another landmark stride in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party’s history upon his victory in the 2015 Presidential Election. Incidentally President Maithripala Sirisena, who served as the General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party for a period of thirteen years was appointed its leader.
Maithripala Sirisena who was born the very next day the SLFP was created, has now taken over the responsibility of ensuring a successful journey of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party.
The Sri Lanka Freedom Party is now tasked with the responsibility of establishing good governance and to ensure the prosperity of the nation.
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