A senior politician and a former Minister R.M. Dharmadasa Banda has passed away.
Dharmadasa Banda who was much popular among the Uva Wellassa fraternity first entered Parliament in 1965. From then onwards he was engaged in active politics for 45 years. He had held several Ministerial Portfolios. He played a pioneering role in ditching the United National Party with 17 MPs and strengthening the hands of the President when operations were staged against the LTTE. He bid farewell to politics due to his ill health during this General Election. He passed away at a Private Hospital this evening after a long illness. Funeral arrangements will be notified later.