President Ranil Wickremesinghe arrived at the parliamentary premises a short while ago for the ceremonial opening of the third session of the Ninth Parliament.
In accordance with the instructions of the President, arrangements were made to conduct the ceremony in a very simple manner without gun salutes or car parades.
Instead, the President was received in front of parliament with a Tri-Force Guard of Honour. Here the President’s flag is not hoisted, only the National Flag is hoisted.
The arrival of the Members of Parliament took place first, followed by the arrival of Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena, Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena and finally President Ranil Wickremesinghe.
Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena and Secretary General of Parliament Mr. Dhammika Dasanayaka received President Ranil Wickremesinghe at the main steps of the parliament building.
The Speaker and the Secretary General of Parliament then escorted the President to Parliament building along with the Serjeant-at-Arms, Deputy Serjeant-at-Arms and Assistant Serjeant-at-Arms.
After entering the Chamber, the President presides over the sitting and this time, the President’s seat is marked with the State Emblem instead of the President’s official emblem. At this time, the speaker will sit with the secretaries in the lower seat where the speaker sits during the committee stage.
Following the presentation of the Government Policy Statement by the President, the House will be adjourned. Afterwards, a tea party has been organized for the Members of Parliament and invited guests.
A Guard of Honor will also be presented when the President and First Lady leave Parliament. – ada derana