Former Justice and Higher Education Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe yesterday said he would make a request to President Maithripala Sirisena to appoint a Commission of Inquiry to probe the behaviour and activities of the Constitutional Council (CC) as it has been totally politicised.
He added that members of the CC did not have the authority to reject nominations of the Executive for judicial positions and questioned the qualifications of CC members to reject the names of judges nominated by President Sirisena to the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal.
Addressing a news briefing at the Sri Lanka Foundation last morning, Mr. Rajapakshe alleged that Justice Deepali Wjesundara’s name had been rejected by the CC as she gave a judgment convicting white flag case suspects and justice Kusala Sarojini Weerawardana’s name has been rejected as she released former Secretary to President Lalith Weeratunga on bail.
“All these two judges are respected judicial personalities with excellent track record and experience in administration of justice for more than thirty years. Besides, disciplinary or any other action against judges have to be taken by the Judicial Service Commission led by Chief Justice. Therefore, it is quite clear that the CC is working on a political agenda,” Mr. Rajapakshe charged.
Citing two previous wrongful decisions of the CC on the appointment of the police chief, he said Mr. S.M Wickramasinghe’s name was rejected only because he served as the CSO of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa despite being the most senior, efficient, experienced DIG with excellent track record. In another occasions, the nomination of former Justice Secretary Suhada Gamlath was rejected only because he served under the Rajapaksa regime.
It is quite obvious that we can’t go on like this. The CC rejects nominations sent by the President and President continues to send the same nominations. Under the circumstances, we cannot expect a compromise from both sides and therefore the best option is to appoint a Committee of Inquiry by President Sirisena and implement the recommendations of the CoI. The legislature has no authority to take any decision on the CC, Mr. Rajapakshe stressed. (Sandun A Jayasekera)