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Amid charges that President Sirisena had violated the constitution, he said legal experts had advised him that the now controversial sacking was within the constitution.
President Sirisena said Wickremesinghe could not work in co-operation and there were policy and a cultural gulf between them.
Sirisena said a scam at the central bank went against the principles of the administration they formed.
Prime Minister Wickremesinghe had also awarded contracts irregularly, which he wanted to probe further.
He said allegations by a person called Namal Kumara, was not taken seriously by police chief Pujitha Jayasundera.
President Sirisena said he then invited Mahinda Rajapaksa to be prime minister.
"I ask all members of the 225 parliament to support this decision," he said in Sinhalese.
He said he decided form a government with Mahinda Rajapaksa for the benefit of the country.
"We will reach this aim, strengthen democratic rule, strengthen the freedom of the people, human rights, fundamental rights, media freedom, all rights and priviledges strengthened and build a prosperous nation," he said.
Sri Lanka's economy was also in a downturn he said. (Colombo/Oct28/2018)
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