The Supreme Court today refused Leave to Proceed with a Fundamental Rights violation petition filed by Duminda Nawagamuwa of Frontline Socialist Party against former President Mahinda Rajapaksa and several other respondents over deploying of army personnel during the Presidential Election.
In his petition, Nawagamuwa, who contested the 2015 Presidential Election under the Frontline Socialist Party, stated that the former president Rajapaksa had deployed army personnel between January 3 and Jan. 8 after authorising to issue an order (Gazette) under section 12(1) of the Public Security Ordinance (PSO).
Supreme Court bench comprised Chief Justice K. Sripavan, Justice Sisira de Abrew and Justice Anil Gunaratne.
Commanders of the Three Forces, the Commissioner of Elections, Inspector General of Police and the Attorney General are the other respondents cited in the petition.
Counsel Viran Corea appearing for the petitioner stated that his client reliably learnt that the Election Commissioner, the fifth respondent in the petition, did not make any recommendation to the then President Rajapaksa, under article 104D of the Constitution regarding the deployment of the armed forces for a free and fair election.
Counsel stated the first respondent had issued a Gazette notification dated January 2, 2015 to deploy army personnel in all 25 districts by violating the criteria stipulated in the PSO in a manner ultra vires the PSO and arbitrarily exercised and abused the powers vested in him under the PSO.
The Petitioner maintained that his and the citizens Fundamental Rights guaranteed in the Constitution (Article 12(1)) had been violated owing to the respondents’ acts.
Meanwhile, retired Attorney General Palitha Fernando PC appearing for the former president stated that both former and incumbent presidents were in the habit of issuing similar orders under Section 12(1) of the Public Security Ordinance on a monthly basis as a requirement of national security.
Mr. Fernando contended that the issuing of the gazette had no impact upon the election. He further affirmed that the executive president has powers to call out army for the maintenance of public order at any part of the country.
Meanwhile, Solicitor General Suhada Gamlath appearing for the Attorney General stated that it was a practice of the executive president deploying armed forces through a Gazette.
He further stated that there is no substantial material to prove that the petitioner’s fundamental rights had been violated.
The Chief Justice also observed that, no affidavit had not been filed by anyone to prove that their Fundamental Rights had been violated or been prevented from exercising their franchise in the presence of army.
“How it affected the voters. What is the vote turn out in the Northern province,” the Chief Justice questioned. (Lakmal Sooriyagoda)
Comments - 1
Veda-mama Wednesday, 01 April 2015 05:46 PM
THIS IS WHAT IS KNOWN AS "JUSTICE", INDEPENDENT AND IMMUNE TO OUTSIDE PRESSURE.
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