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JHU challenges the 19th Amendment

31 March 2015 10:42 am - 3     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) today filed a petition in the Supreme Court against the proposed 19th Amendment to the Constitution, highlighting that the proposed devolution of powers among the heads of State and Government was vague and the amendment itself was a violation of the election manifesto of President Maithripala Sirisena.

JHU National Organiser and Provincial Councillor Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe filed the petition on behalf of the party, while JHU lawyers M.C. Jayaratne and Tudor Perera appeared for the petitioner.

Mr. Warnasinghe said the manifesto of the President had evidently mentioned that he would not go for any Constitutional amendment which would call for a referendum.    
“The latest amendment has proposed to make the Prime Minister the Head of the Government without a referendum.  The people elected President Maithripala Sirisena with a mandate to curb the arbitrary powers of the Presidency and not to make the Prime Minister the Head of the Government, which would call for a referendum,” he said explaining their stance to challenge the constitutional reforms.  

He said according to one article in the Amendment, the President had been mentioned as the Head of the State as well as the Government but it had also been cited as the Prime Minister is the government’s head in another article.
“There are a number of contradictory and vague statements in the reforms. The 19th Amendment is also not the one approved by the Cabinet of ministers,” he said.

The Jathika Hela Urumaya previously charged the Constitutional reforms were a result of a Constitutional Coup and vowed to defeat the 19th Amendment in its present form.    
So far, nine petitions including the petition of the JHU have been filed in the Supreme Court challenging the proposed 19th Amendment to the Constitution. (Lahiru Pothmulla)

  Comments - 3

  • Cyril n Wednesday, 01 April 2015 11:47 AM

    JUST cannot stand on its own. They need something very strong to hang on. For their survival they are to topple the apple cart.

    wijebahu Wednesday, 01 April 2015 02:43 AM

    They know they will never be able to get a majority in a parliament contesting elections as an independent party. So block everything with ulterior motives.

    Ranil Wijeyesekera Thursday, 02 April 2015 01:41 PM

    A strong executive with unitary power is needed. We know from practice that this can lead to absolute power masuse. JR, MR made ele3ction a mockery. Elections or referendumwere held at appropiate times to win votes. Members were bribed to bring block votes.Money was used to get members elected. A division of power and freedom of Information iws absolutely necessary. JHU is fair. Please change your stance to acceptrealities on the ground.

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