Highlights

  • Huge crowds at 'missing' Sri Lankan President's official residence
  • Sri Lankan President's house has turned into a public place
  • Lankans express awe and anger at luxuries inside the palatial house

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Hoping for a better future, Sri Lankans 'enjoy a day out' at the presidential palace

Since anti-govt protesters stormed the presidential residence on Saturday morning forcing Gotabaya Rajapaksa to flee, the place is overrun with huge crowds.

The official residence of Sri Lanka’s president could have been mistaken for a resort over the weekend with people enjoying a dip in the pool, relishing a good lunch or lounging on large sofas.

But these aren’t just people. They are angry Sri Lankans. Angry that their leaders brought on them the worst economic crisis in the nation’s history. Angry that they have been forced struggle for food, fuel, power while their leaders lived in luxury.

Since anti-govt protesters stormed the presidential residence on Saturday morning forcing Gotabaya Rajapaksa to flee, the place is overrun with huge crowds. With some deciding to camp there to some just deciding to have a day out with families in the presidential garden.

Several rooms in the grand house were even vandalised as mobs vented their rage.

One of the protesters said the successive governments in Sri Lanka have oppressed the people of the country and have been only clinging on to power through military force.

Another man said he had come to the president's residence for a 'royal lunch' with his family. He said that he was hopeful that the island nation would now be free of corruption.

Videos also show protesters enjoying facilities like the gym at the palatial residence. The foyer resembled a museum with visitors clicking photographs and and taking selfies.

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