Court hearing of petitions against Parliament dissolution to continue tomorrow

Court hearing of petitions against Parliament dissolution to continue tomorrow

Written by Staff Writer

12 Nov, 2018 | 6:26 pm

COLOMBO (News 1st): The petitions filed at the Supreme Court seeking the quashing of the gazette notification issued by the President dissolving parliament and a determination that this action was illegal, will be taken up again tomorrow (Nov 13). The Attorney General will make submissions tomorrow.

Whilst a total of 12 petitions were filed against the dissolution of parliament, the petition filed by Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan was taken up first. Attorney-at-Law S. Kanag-Isvaran appeared for the Opposition Leader. Kanag-Isvaran submitted to the court that as per the 19th amendment to the constitution, the President does not have the power to dissolve parliament and can only do so if a request is made by a majority of MP’s. He noted that the President dissolving parliament as per his will, disregards the public mandate and that the move was a blow to the sovereignty of the people.

Furthermore, he noted that as per the 19th amendment, article 70 section 1 of the constitution deprives the President of the power to dissolve parliament up to 4 and a half years into the term of parliament except if a request is made by a majority of members, adding that acting with disregard to this would cause anarchy not only in parliament but in society as a whole.

Representing the second petitioner, the Chairman of the UNP Kabir Hashim, President’s Counsel Thilak Marapana endorsed the views expressed by President’s Counsel Kanag-Isvaran.

Petitions were also filed against the dissolution of parliament by Anura Kumara Dissanayake, Rauff Hakeem, Rishad Bathiudeen and Mano Ganesan representing the JVP, Sri Lanka Muslim Congress, All Ceylon Makkal Congress and the Democratic People’s Front, the Director of the Center for Policy Alternatives Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu, Attorney at Law Aruna Laksiri, Attorney at Law Lal Wijenayaka, Attorney at Law G.C.J Perera and Attorney at Law Indika Gallage.

Member of the Elections Commission of Sri Lanka Ratnajeevan Hoole also filed a petition at the Supreme Court challenging the dissolution of Parliament.

Professor Channa Jayasumana of the Medical Faculty at the Raja Rata University has come forward as an intervening petitioner. All petitions are being taken up before a three-member bench comprising of Chief Justice Nalin Perera and Justices Prasanna Jayewardena and Priyantha Jayawardena.

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