Colombo Telegraph

Lawyers Petition Supreme Court Against Sirisena For Appointing Acting President Of CA Bypassing CC

Conveners of Lawyers for Democracy have today petitioned the Supreme Court against President Maithripala Sirisena for making successive appointments of Acting President of Court of Appeal without approval of the Constitutional Council.

The petitioners Lal Wijenayake, G. A. Sunil Jayaratne, Luxman Jothikumar and R. A. Namal Rajapakse have petitioned against Attorney General and Speaker, Karu Jayasuriya, Members of the Constitutional Council – Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, Leader of the Opposition, Mahinda Rajapaksa, Mahinda Samarasinghe MP, Chamal Rajapaksa MP, Bimal Rathnayaka MP, Thalatha Atukorale MP, Jayantha Dhanapala, Naganathan Sellvakumaran, Javed Yusuf and Justice Deepali Wijesundera (Judge of the Court of Appeal) and Secretary to the President, Udaya Ranjith Seneveiratne.

In the petition SC (REF) 107/2019 Conveners of Lawyers for Democracy urged Supreme Court; 

1. the Petitioners leave to proceed with this application in the first instance;

2. an Interim Order that the President [represented in these proceedings by the 1st Respondent AG] should desist from making any further acting appointments to the office and position of President, Court of Appeal, until the hearing and final determination of this application.

3. A Declaration that the Petitioners’ fundamental rights under Article 12(1) have been and continue to be violated by the actions of the President, represented by the Respondent AG;

4. Appropriate Interim Directions that the President represented by the Attorney General, and/or the 13th Respondent of the Presidential Secretariat to submit to Your Lordships’ Court;

a) The decisions and actual letters of appointments, pertaining to the Acting Appointments made to the Office of President Court of Appeal from on or around 9th January 2019 and thereafter from time to time;

b) The Approvals and/or correspondence (if any) of the Constitutional Council, received by the President pertaining to the Acting Appointments made to the office and/or position of President, Court of Appeal after 9th January 2019.

5. An Interim Direction on the 2nd to 11th  Respondent CC, to submit to Supreme Court, all decision(s), correspondence and deliberation(s) pertaining to any acting appointments as President, Court of Appeal purporting to have been made in respect of the 12th Respondent;

6. A direction that the President, represented by the Attorney General, is required to forward fresh suitable nominations acceptable to the Constitutional Council for the office and position of President of the Court of Appeal;

7. A Declaration that the decision to consecutively make acting appointments to the office and position of President of the Court of Appeal without the approval of the Constitutional Council is violative of the Constitution and in particular Article 41C of the Constitution read with Article 12(1);

8. Declare that the actions of The Hon. President represented by the Hon. the Attorney General, have violated and/or continue to violate the Constitution and in particular, Articles 33, 41C & 109 thereof;

a) Declare that The President represented by the Attorney General, has acted contrary to the Constitution, and in particular Articles 33(1)(a) 33(1)(c) & 33A as read with Article 4(d) of the Constitution;

9. Grant exemplary costs,

10. Make such further and other just and equitable orders as to Supreme Court shall seem fit, in the circumstances of this application, under and in terms of Article 126(4) of the Constitution of the Republic; and

11. Such further and other reliefs as to Supreme Court shall seem meet. 

To read the petition in full click here

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