President’s Journey 4
Special supplement to mark four years of Rajapaksa Presidency                    HOME

Four years of victorious march!

TIME LINE

November 19, 2005 – Mahinda Rajapaksa takes oaths as the fifth Executive President of Sri Lanka.

November 23, 2005 – President appoints new Cabinet.

November 25, 2005 – In his first address to the nation, the President says, “Sri Lanka will be the traditional homeland of all its people.”

December 28, 2005 – In his first official visit to a foreign state, the President meets Dr. Manmohan Singh, Prime Minister of India, at Hyderabad House in New Delhi.

January 25, 2006 – Four senior UNP Parliamentarians crossed over to the government: UNP Kandy District MP Keheliya Rambukwella, Chief Whip of the Opposition and Kalutara District MP Mahinda Samarasinghe, UNP spokesperson Prof. G.L. Peiris and Susantha Punchinilame.

April 2, 2006 – President meets Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf in Islamabad.

May 11, 2006 – President inaugurates work on the Norochcholai coal power plant after 10 years of delay.

June 29, 2006 – President Rajapaksa is appointed as the new Chairman of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) at a ceremony today at Temple Trees. He is the first party leader to hail from outside the Bandaranaike family, taking the reins from former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga.

July 21, 2006 – A new crisis leading to the first large-scale fighting since signing of the ceasefire agreement occurs when the LTTE closes the sluice gates of the Mavil Aru reservoir and cut the water supply to 15,000 villages in government-controlled areas.

August 25, 2006 – The Ceylon Workers’ Congress (CWC) and Upcountry People’s Front (UPF), the two major parties that represent the Upcountry Tamils of Sri Lanka, join government.

August 31, 2006 – Visiting Sri Lanka President Rajapaksa meets British Prime Minister Tony Blair at his Holiday Bungalow in Buckinghamshire and discusses the situation in Sri Lanka.

September 4, 2006 – The Sri Lankan military gained control of the Sampur town of eastern Trincomalee District, where the area used by the LTTE as an artillery launching pad to attack Trincomalee Port.

September 11, 2006 – Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe has a special meeting with President Rajapaksa. The opposition UNP was also represented by Karu Jayasuriya, while the SLFP was represented by its General Secretary, Minister Maithripala Sirisena, in the talks at Temple Trees.

September 19, 2006 – The President has a friendly discussion with United States President George W. Bush at the United Nations Headquarters.

October 23, 2006 – The SLFP, the main constituent of the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government and the main opposition United National Party (UNP) enter into a historic Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on six common issues, to find a solution to Sri Lanka’s national crisis.
SLFP General Secretary Minister Maithripala Sirisena and UNP Chairman Malik Samarawickrama signed the MoU at Temple Trees. President Rajapaksa and UNP and Opposition Leader Wickremesinghe met the previous night to finalise the historic SLFP-UNP agreement.

January 19, 2007 – The Sri Lankan military announces the capture of Vakarai, a coastal town of eastern Batticaloa District. The military has accused the LTTE of using civilians in the Vakarai Hospital as a human shield and also using the hospital premises as an artillery launching pad.

January 25, 2007 – The President ceremonially inaugurates the Moragahakanda-Kaluganga water project. The Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Mahaweli Development and of Environment, Maithripala Sirisena, and the Minister of Local Government and Provincial Councils, Janaka Bandara Tennakoon, also participated at the event.

February 28, 2007 – A ceremony is held in Beijing to commemorate 50 years of diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and China and to usher in the Year of China-Sri Lanka Friendship.

March 28, 2007 – Sri Lanka’s new budget airline Mihin Lanka takes its inaugural flight to Bodhgaya in India yesterday morning from the Bandaranaike International Airport in Katunayake.

July 11, 2007 – After 13 years, the Sri Lankan military captures the final stronghold of LTTE in the East, Thoppigala (Baron’s Cap), nearly after a year of military action.

January 3, 2008 – The government unilaterally terminates its Ceasefire Agreement with the LTTE. The termination takes effect on January 16, 2008 – 14 days from the date of the government’s notice.

March 25, 2008 – President Rajapaksa declares open the first steel flyover, built over the Kelaniya rail crossing on the Colombo-Kandy road this morning.

April 25, 2008 – The Sri Lankan military gains control of the Madhu Shrine area.

May 10, 2008 – Elections are held to elect members to the Eastern Provincial Council.

May 16, 2008 – The President appointed Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan alias Pillaiyan as the first Chief Minister of the Eastern Provincial Council. Chandrakanthan and other elected members of the Provincial Council took their oaths at the Presidential Secretariat in Colombo.

August 23, 2008 – Sri Lanka’s ruling Party, the UPFA wins North Central and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council Elections to select 77 councilors for a four-year term.

September 24, 2008 – The President addresses 63rd Session of the United Nation General Assembly says his government is ready to hold talks with the Tamil Tigers only if they decommission their arms and dismantle their military.

October 9, 2008 – Palestinian President Dr. Mahmoud Abbas arrives in Sri Lanka on a two-day official visit. This is the first visit of a Palestinian President to Sri Lanka.

November 14, 2008 – In one of the most daring operations, Pooneryn was captured by the 58 Division in a lightning assault across a vast area.

January 2, 2009 – The President announcing the capture of Kilinochchi by the Sri Lankan forces issues a final warning to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to lay down arms and surrender. President officially declared the news of the unprecedented victory, addressing a gathering at the Presidential Secretariat. He said the day Sri Lankan people are living under a one flag is not far away.

January 8, 2009 – The government proscribes the LTTE as a terrorist organisation on the basis that it has been holding civilians to be used as human shields.

February 14, 2009 – UPFA becomes victorious at the Central and North-Western Provincial Council elections.

March 9, 2009 – Founder of TMVP, Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman along with nearly 3,000 members of his party from the East takes the membership in ruling party, SLFP in the presence of President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees.

April 16, 2009 – Marking the first ever visit to the former rebel capital by a head-of-state in almost three decades, President Rajapaksa tours the recently liberated northern town of Kilinochchi.

April 25, 2009 – UPFA wins the Western Provincial Council election.

May 18, 2009 – The military reports the death of LTTE Leader Velupillai Prabhakaran, his intelligence chief ‘Pottu Amman’ and ‘Soosai,’ the head of the Tiger’ naval wing. The government announces a complete victory against the LTTE. Its military forces recaptured all remaining LTTE controlled territories in the Northern Province, including notably Killinochchi (January 2), the Elephant Pass (January 9) and the ultimately the entire District of Mullaitivu (May 18).

May 23, 2009 – Visiting United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets President Rajapaksa at President’s House in Kandy.

May 28, 2009 – European nations call unsuccessfully for an independent investigation of Sri Lanka. The motion was rejected 29 to 12 votes (with six abstentions).

July 22, 2009 – Jaffna-Kandy (A9) Highway opens for general public after 19 years.

August 6, 2009 – Madhu Feast is celebrated in a grand-scale after 33 years.

August 8, 2009 – Ruling UPFA records a resounding victory at the Uva Provincial Council election
Voters in Jaffna elect the ruling party to govern the Jaffna Municipal Council.
In Vavuniya, the ITAK takes the majority of five seats in the 11-member Urban Council.

October 10, 2009 – UPFA secures the last remaining Provincial Council by comfortably winning the Southern Province Provincial Council election.

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