Sajith Premadasa is a Sri Lankan politician – Member of Parliament for the Hambantota District in deep south and The Cabinet Minister for Housing, Construction and Cultural Affairs. He is the Presidential Candidate for United National Front for 2019 Presidential Election. He is also the the Deputy Leader of the United National Party (UNP) and a working committee member of the UNP and the former Cabinet Minister of Housing and Samurudi Affairs; and Deputy Minister of Health.
Sajith Premadasa, was born on 12 January 1967 (age 52 years) in Colombo, to Hema Premadasa and Ranasinghe Premadasa former President of Sri Lanka who was at the time Minister of Broadcasting and a Member of Parliament from the Colombo District. President Preadasa elected as President of Sri Lanka in 1989, having served as Prime Minister from 1977. He was the President until his assassination in 1993
Sajith Premadasa attended St. Thomas’ Preparatory School, Royal College Colombo and Mill Hill School, thereafter entered London School of Economics of the University of London graduating with a BSc in Economics, Politics and International Relations. Thereafter, he attended University of Maryland but did not graduate. During this time he interned in the Foreign Relations Committee under Senator Larry Pressler.
Sajith entered Sri Lankan politics after the assassination of his father in 1993. Having joined his fathers party the United National Party, he was appointed district organizer of the UNP for Hambantota District in 1994, where He launched several projects for poverty alleviation and housing development. He initiated the youth movement Tharuna Saviya; the People Development Foundation Jana Suwaya for poverty alleviation in Hambantota; and the Sasunata Aruna to aid Buddhist temples and sunday schools in line with the 2600 Sambuddatwa Jayanthi celebrations.
Sajith Premadasa’s wife is Jalani Premadasa and sister is Dulanjali Premadasa.
It was from the Hambantota district he contested the 2000 general election and entered parliament gaining 83% of the UNP preferential votes. He also won 82% of the preferential votes in the 2001 general election and 84% in the 2004 general election and 89% in 2010 general election 86% in 2015 general election. For the fourth general election in a row, Sajith Premadasa won the highest percentage of preferential votes out of all United National Party candidates, which was just under 90 percent of United National Party votes in the Hambantota Electoral District.
He was appointed as the Deputy Minister of Health under the premiership of Ranil Wickramasinghe in 2001 and remained till 2004 when the Wickramasinghe government was dissolved by President Chandrika Kumaratunga.
Sajith Premadasa was elected as the Deputy Leader of the United National Party in 2011 and then removed from the position in 2013. However he was reappointed on 24 September 2014.
Following the 2015 Presidential Election, Premadasa was appointed Minister of Housing and Samurdhi in the new cabinet formed in January 2015 by President Maithripala Sirisena. As housing minister, he initiated several national housing projects for lower and middle income families. These include Gamudawa, Jalthara Green Valley residencies, Homagama Mount Clifford. As samurdhi minister, he increases the samurdhi payment by two fold. With the addition of construction to his port folio, he initiated the Shelter for All 2025 objective and provided over 65,000 houses to low income families and initiated 2500 villages.