Participating Members

Chandrika Kumaratunga

President of Sri Lanka
(1994-2005)

Chandrika Kumaratunga entered mainstream politics in 1993 when elected Chief Minister of the Western Provincial Council. She was Prime Minister in 1994 after her party won the general elections. She won the October 1994 presidential elections on the basis of a campaign built on ending corruption, good governance, a negotiated end to the ethnic crisis and peace acceptable to all communities. Days before being elected to her second term in 1999, she escaped a LTTE assassination attempt, however lost the use of her right eye. When the LTTE resumed its armed conflict, she urged the government forces to exercise caution and to minimize civilian casualties at all times. She was the only political leader to offer a political solution to the conflict but could not be translated into legislative bills as the government did not have the required 2/3 majority in parliament. Her government also implemented a successful economic development programme, which took the benefits of development to all sections of the population: Education, Health, Ports, Airport, Highways, Water Supply.

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