Budget 2008 passed with majority of 47
|* 114 votes for
budget, 67 against
* SLFP, UNP-D, CWC, UPF
vote for; UNP, TNA, SLFP (M) vote against
* JVP abstains
* Anura Bandaranaike,
four TNA MPs absent
The Government yesterday won the Third Reading vote of Budget 2008
with a majority of 47 votes.
The crucial vote was considered to be one of the most decisive budget
votes in recent history especially in view of defence and national
The budget was passed with 114 MPs voting for and 67 voting against.
Thirty eight MPs abstained from voting.
The Government led by SLFP and other constituent parties along with
the Jathika Hela Urumaya, UNP Democratic Group, Ceylon Workers Congress
and the Upcountry People’s Front voted in favour of the budget.
JVP MP Nandana Gunatilleke who abstained from voting at the second
reading of the budget, JHU MP Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka Thera and
Independent MP V. Puthrasigamani also voted in favour of the budget.
The JVP which opposed the budget at the second reading vote of the
budget decided to abstain from voting at the last hour.
SLFP MP Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe who sat with the Opposition during the
second reading budget debate also abstained from voting.
Anura Bandaranaike who sat with the Opposition next to Opposition
Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe having entered the Chamber from the
Opposition side an hour before the Third Reading vote, was absent at the
time of the vote.
The United National Party, Tamil National Alliance and four SLMC MPs
who broke ranks with the Government to sit with the opposition, voted
against the budget. SLFP dissident MPs Mangala Samaraweera and Sripathi
Suriyaarachchi also voted against.
Four TNA MPs P. Ariyanethran, Jeyanandamoorthy, Thangeshawari
Kathirgamar and M.K. Eeelaventhan were absent at the time of the voting.
It turned into a decisive vote with political crosscurrents and
crossovers in Parliament with efforts by the United National Party and
the SLFP (M) wing to garner support to defeat the budget at the vote on
the Third Reading.
UNP MP Lakshman Kiriella asked for a vote/division by name as the
Speaker put the appropriation Bill for the third reading vote. At the
Second Reading on November 19, 118 voted for and 102 against.
This was the fourth budget of the UPFA Government. President Mahinda
Rajapaksa, presented the Budget on November 7.