Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena

Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena (born 10 October 1945) is a Sri Lankan politician and landed proprietor. He is the current Speaker of the Sri Lankan Parliament.[1]

Mahinda Yapa Abeywardana
මහින්ද යාපා අබේවර්ධන
மகிந்த யாப்பா அபேவர்தன
Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena (cropped) 1.JPG
21st Speaker of the Parliament
Assumed office
20 August 2020
DeputyRanjith Siyambalapitiya
Ajith Rajapakse
Preceded byKaru Jayasuriya
Minister of Parliamentary Affairs
In office
February 2015 – May 2015
Preceded bySumedha Jayasena
Succeeded byLakshman Yapa Abeywardena
Minister of Agriculture
In office
2010 – 12 January 2015
Preceded byMaithripala Sirisena
Succeeded byDuminda Dissanayake
Minister of Cultural Affairs
In office
Preceded byVijitha Herath
Deputy Minister of Healthcare & Nutrition
In office
Preceded bySajith Premadasa
Chief Minister of Southern Province
In office
Preceded byAmarasiri Dodangoda
Succeeded byH. G. Sirisena
Member of Parliament
for Matara District
Assumed office
Personal details
Born (1945-10-10) 10 October 1945 (age 77)
Beragama, Matara, Colony of Ceylon (now Sri Lanka)
Political partySri Lanka Podujana Peramuna
Other political
Sri Lanka People's Freedom Alliance, United National Party
Alma materUniversity of Colombo, Rahula College, Matara, Thelijjawila Central College
OccupationLanded Proprietor

Political careerEdit

He first entered parliament in 1983 as the Hakmana United National Party and has been active in politics for more than 30 years.[2]

Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena was a young MP when he openly criticised the 1987 Indo-Sri Lanka Accord for a new provincial councils system to be established in Sri Lanka. He along with Chandrakumara Wijeya Gunawardena, the member for Kamburupitiya voted against the bill in Parliament becoming the only two government members who voted against it. He was later removed by the then President J. R. Jayewardene from his Parliamentary seat for violation of the party rules by not voting for the bill.

He later joined hands with Gamini Dissanayake and Lalith Athulathmudali (who were also against the Indo-Sri Lanka Accord) as they too quit United National Party and formed the Democratic United National Front or aka 'Rajaliya-front'. Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena then contested for Southern Provincial Council under DUNF and won. He was then elected as the opposition leader of the Southern Provincial Council in 1993, and he became the Chief Minister of the Southern Provincial Council in 1994. Elected twice as the Chief Minister he was in office from 1994 to 2001. He is said to be one of the most successful Chief Ministers from the south for developing the infrastructures that were neglected for more than 5 years due to the dark era of the country.

He left office to contest in the 2001 general elections and become an opposition MP and served until 2004. After the 2004 General elections, he became the Deputy Minister of Healthcare and later the Cabinet Minister for Cultural Affairs & National Heritage. After the 2010 General Elections, he was appointed as the Minister of Agriculture. Having been in office as the Minister of Agriculture for several years he was elected Vice Chairman at the 38th session of the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations FAO Conference held in Rome, Italy in 2013.[3] He was again appointed as the Minister of Parliamentary Affairs in 2015 for a brief period until he resigned and joined the opposition.

He is a representative of Matara District for the United People's Freedom Alliance in the Parliament of Sri Lanka. He resides in Kalubowila, Dehiwala.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "New Speaker of Parliament appointed". Daily News. Retrieved 2020-08-20.
  2. ^ LBO (2020-08-20). "Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena unanimously elected as Speaker of ninth Parliament". Lanka Business Online. Retrieved 2020-08-20.
  3. ^ "Minister Mahinda Yapa elected Vice Chairman of FAO". Archived from the original on 2021-11-30. Retrieved 2020-08-20.

External linksEdit

Political offices
Preceded by Speaker of the Parliament of Sri Lanka
Lines of succession
Preceded by Sri Lankan presidential line of succession
2nd in line
Order of precedence
Preceded byas Prime Minister Order of precedence of Sri Lanka
as Speaker of the Parliament
Succeeded byas Chief Justice