Dili – A six-party coalition in East Timor has chosen independence hero Xanana Gusmao to lead the next government, pending approval from the country's president.
East Timor has been in a political deadlock since another ruling coalition that backed Prime Minister Taur Matan Ruak collapsed in February with the leader's request to resign. The country's president, Guterres Lu Olo, has yet to accept that request, leaving the county in limbo.
Gusmao, East Timor's first president and former prime minister, has said for weeks that his coalition controls enough seats to form the next government. Lu Olo, who belongs to an opposing party, has stalled the process.
On Tuesday, Gusmao's coalition sent a letter to the president requesting a meeting and formally putting his name forward as the next prime minister.
Gusmao's coalition previously met wit Lu Olo on March 6 to inform him that they intended to form the next government, but the president asked the parties to first hold more meetings.
Gusmao has said if the impasse continues, it will bring great destruction to the country's economy, making small communities vulnerable.
East Timor has been independent since 2002, following decades of occupation by Indonesia.