Amarasiri is no more
by Sugathapala Mendis

Veteran politician M. S. Amarasiri passed away yesterday, after brief illness, at Maharagama.

Matarage Sirisena Amarasiri de Silva was born in 1925 on September 05. He had his primary education at Malamure school in Mapalagama and later at St. Aloysius’ College in Galle. He entered local government politics as a member of the LSSP and later joined the MEP over the language issue and was among those who fought against colonial occupation.

He was first elected as an MP for the Hiniduma electorate in 1960. Amarasiri was the first JP appointed by S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike. He later joined the UNP and won his electorate in 1977 to be appointed as Deputy Minister of Trade and Shipping. Later, he was promoted as the Minister of Trade. When the Provincial Council system was introduced, he was appointed as the first Chief Minister of the Southern Provincial Council. From 1994 onwards he was the Opposition Leader of the SPC.

He was later appointed Governor of the Uva Province by the Chandrika Kumaratunga Government.

Amarasiri played a major role during the last Presidential election for the victory of President Mahinda Rajapakse.

His remains will be at Rajagiriya today and and tomorrow for the public to pay their respects and then taken to Southern Provincial Council on Wednesday morning. Cremation will be held on Wednesday evening at family burial grounds in Mapalagalama.


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