By the Lawyers Collective –
On 8th January 2013 the leaders of the Opposition Political Parties wrote to the Speaker and protested against the decision taken to take up the debate on the impeachment on 10th and 11th of January. Opposition Leaders reminded the Speaker that proceeding with the Impeachment debate is a serious violation of the Constitution. The Party Leaders sought a party Leaders meeting. See annexed Letter.
Judges Association have issued a statement urging all parties to respect the decisions of the Supreme Court. See the annexed statement of JSA.
Several threatening calls were received by two judges namely the President of the Court of Appeal Hon. Justice Sri Skandarajah and Hon Justice Anil Gooneratne. Police have reported facts to the Chief Magistrates Court of Colombo. These two judges were among the Bench in the Court of Appeal that quashed the Report of seven members of the Parliamentary select Committee. When the Divineguma Bill was taken up for debate in Parliament large crowds, sponsored by the Government gathered near Parliament and chanted slogans against the judges of the Supreme Court. Continuous state media attacks on the judges, the judiciary and the lawyers through posters have made judges and lawyers vulnerable for physical attacks. On 8th January 2013, a group government sponsored by certain elements of the Government staged Satyagraha, in front of the Chief Justice’s official residence.
Lawyers all over the country will be engaged in a two day strike, commencing from 10th January 2013. Judges are expected to join in with similar actions. Please see the BASL statement. Peoples March will commenced near the Supreme Courts, at 10.00 a.m on 10th January, with the participation of lawyers, political parties, trade unions, academics, civil society orgnizations and individuals.