By Yoshitha Perera
Although the petitioners had requested to annul the presidential proclamation on March 2 on the dissolution of Parliament, the Supreme Court has no jurisdiction to invalidate the political decisions made by the President, President’s Counsel Gamini Marapana informed the Supreme Court yesterday.
President’s Counsel Gamini Marapana appearing on behalf of the intervenient petitioner, Adhikarana Sanganayake of Malwatta Chapter and Chief Incumbent of the Sama Vihara, Ven. Atapattukande Ananda Thera, informed this to the five judge bench appointed to consider the seven Fundamental Rights (FR) petitions filed challenging the General Election date and the dissolution of Parliament.
The petitions were taken up for hearing for the eighth consecutive day, before a Supreme Court Bench of five judges comprising Chief Justice Jayantha Jayasuriya as Chairman, Justices Buwaneka Aluvihare, Sisira de Abrew, Priyantha Jayawardene and
Highlighting the importance of conducting the General Election immediately, PC Marapana requested the Court to import the doctrine of necessity into the Country’s law and endorse it to the Parliamentary Election Act. Explaining the meaning of the doctrine of necessity, PC Marapana said that it is the basis on which extra-legal actions by state actors, which are designed to restore order, are found to be constitutional.
He said that as an independent institution in the country the Election Commission (EC) was trying to find every clause in the books to postpone the election.
President’s Counsel Kushan de Alwis appearing on behalf of the intervenient petitioner, Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekara informed the court that according to President’s Counsel Saliya Peiris’ submission on behalf of the EC, he said that the Commission will decide the election date once the green light is given by the health authorities. PC Alwis emphasized that there was no stay order issued by the Supreme Court to the Election Commission preventing it from deciding the General Election date. He said that the commission was currently having a stance of supporting the petitioners side. PC Alwis further said that it was not necessary to re-convene Parliament only to deal with Finances and said the President had the power to handle financial matters according to powers vested in him through the Constitution.
Appearing for another intervenient petitioner J. Thurairaja, President’s Counsel Uditha Egalahewa informed the Court there was a question according to the 19th amendment made to the Constitution, whether the EC was answerable to Parliament or not. He said that no one can provide interpretations to the EC to postpone the election. Fifteen parties had filed intervenient petitions for the support of the main petitions and the respondents and so far the Supreme Court Bench of five judges had concluded hearing four intervenient petitions.
- Petitions were taken up for hearing for the eighth consecutive day, before a Supreme Court Bench
- Requests the Court to import the doctrine of necessity into the Country’s law