SC’s decision on 20A draft presented to Parliament on Oct. 20

SC’s decision on 20A draft presented to Parliament on Oct. 20

The secret decision of the Supreme Court regarding the constitutionality of the draft bill of the 20th Amendment to the Constitution has been referred to the Speaker of Parliament.

Commenting on the matter, Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardana said the relevant decision will be presented to the Parliament on the 20th of October.

The Supreme Court concluded the consideration of petitions filed challenging the draft bill on the 5th of October. Chief Justice Jayantha Jayasuriya had stated in open court that the secret decision of the Supreme Court on the draft bill will be referred to the President and the Speaker of Parliament in due course.

During the hearing, Attorney General Dappula de Livera stated that all the provisions contained in the draft of the 20th Amendment are in accordance with the Constitution.

Thirty-nine petitions in total had been filed against the draft bill of the 20th Amendment, citing the Attorney General as the respondent.

The petitions were put forward by Election Commission member Professor Ratnajeevan Hoole, Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB), UNP General Secretary Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, UNP Deputy Leader Ruwan Wijewardene, Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) Youth Wing Chairman Mayantha Dissanayake and Attorney-at-Law P. Liyanaarachchi of the Sirilaka Janatha Peramuna, Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL), former Governor and Executive Director of the Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) Ranjith Keerthi Tennakoon, human rights activist Abdul Zanoon and many others.

Meanwhile, Ministers Nimal Siripala de Silva, Gamini Lokuge and Prof. GL Peiris had filed interlocutory petitions seeking permission to present cross-submissions pertaining to the petitions challenging the 20th Amendment draft bill.

In addition, MPs Sagara Kariyawasam, Venerable Omare Kassapa Thera, M. Dayaratne, W.A. Weerathilake and P.G.B. Abeyratne had also filed interlocutory petitions.