The fundamental rights application challenging the appointment of rejected candidates through the national list filed by DEW Gunasekara, the former Minister of UPFA Government was taken up in the Supreme Court yesterday, before a Bench comprising Justice Chandra Ekanayake, Justice Priyantha Jayawardana and Justice Upali Abeyratna.
Nagananda Kodituwakku, Counsel appearing for the Petitioner DEW Gunasekara, submitted to Court that a Bench of 5 Judges has made a manifest error by determining that the draft bill referred to the Court with a provision permitting defeated candidates at the Election to be declared elected as MPs by Party Secretaries as ‘an urgent bill’ by the then President was consistent with the Constitution and not required peoples approval at a referendum.
The counsel submitted that the law required any bill to amend the constitution shall be placed on the order paper and be gazetted for the information of the citizens to raise their objections. However, this constitutional requirement had been by passed by the then President absolutely denying the people any access whatsoever to the draft bill. Therefore, the Counsel submitted to the Court that the process so followed by the then President was outlawed by Article 82 of the Constitution and as such the 14th Amendment passed without adhering to the due process was ab initio void and not good law.
The counsel further submitted to Court that since the said determination had been made by 5 Judges and as the matter canvassed in the Petition concerns the sovereign rights of the citizens enshrined in Article 3, which was of national importance, there shall be appointed to the full Bench of the Supreme Court to hear and determined the case.
However, As Justice Priyantha Jayawardena declined to take part in the hearing, a written submission the Counsel tendered to the Court was not accepted and the matter was re-fixed for support on 23rd of September 2015.
Faiz Mustapha PC, appeared for UPFA General Secretary Wiswa Warnapala whilst Saliya Pieris, PC appeared for Thilanga Sumathipala.
Counsel for the Petitioner filed his written submission on the same day at the Registry of the Supreme Court, seeking appointment of the full Bench of the Supreme Court.
Click here to read the written submission.