Fonseka seeks registration of political party

Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka has sought the registration of the new political party headed by him.Fonseka visited the elections department today and discussed the registering of the Democratic Party. Fonseka joined the Sri Lanka Army in 1970 and saw extensive action throughout the 26 year civil war, culminating in a term as Commander of the Army from 6 December 2005 – 15 July 2009.As commander, he oversaw the final phase of the war, which resulted in the total defeat of the militant LTTE. He also survived an assassination attempt when an LTTE suicide bomber attacked his motorcade in April 2006. Following the end of the war Fonseka was promoted to a four star rank in the Sri Lanka Army, becoming the first serving officer to hold a four star rank. He has been described as Sri Lanka’s most successful army commander.A few months after the defeat of the LTTE, Fonseka was appointed Chief of Defence Staff by President Mahinda Rajapaksa. While his new post was of a higher rank, Fonseka saw the move as an attempt to sideline him. Amid rumours of his desire to enter politics, he subsequently retired from the post on 16 November 2009. On 29 November 2009, Fonseka formally announced his candidature in the 2010 Sri Lankan Presidential Election. His candidacy was endorsed by the main opposition parties, and Fonseka became the main opposition candidate challenging President Rajapaksa. He campaigned under the sign of a swan. Report by Indika Sri Aravinda Fonseka contested the 2010 Presidential elections under Democratic National Alliance but lost to the race to President Mahinda Rajapaksa.As Commander of the Army, Fonseksa played an integral role in ending the 26 year Sri Lankan Civil War in 2009, defeating the LTTE. He later had a public falling out with President Mahinda Rajapaksa, and unsuccessfully challenged Rajapaksa in the 2010 presidential election. Fonseka said that he had issued an open invitation for any political party members to join his new party. Following his election defeat, Fonseka was arrested on 8 February 2010, and the government announced he will be court-martialed for committing “military offences.” He was found guilty of corrupt military supply deals and sentenced to three years in prison. After serving more than 2 years in prison, Fonseka was released on 21 May 2012. (Colombo Gazette) Democratic National Alliance MP Jayantha Kettagoda will function as the General Secretary of the party.

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