The Judicature Amendment Bill which was passed in Parliament last week was legalised when Speaker Karu Jayasuriya officially placed his signature to the Bill this afternoon.
This Bill provides for the appointment of a permanent Trial-at-Bar where three judges will sit daily to hear cases on serious crimes.
The second reading of the Bill was passed by a majority of 67 votes, with UNP, a section of the SLFP and the TNA voting for it, while the Joint Opposition and 16 government members who crossed over to the opposition voting against it.
JVP members were absent during the time of voting. The third reading was passed unanimously, as no one asked for a division.
However, it will also be necessary to appoint the 35 additional judges as per another amendment made to the Judicature Bill six months ago, while the appointing of 100 additional state Counsels is also essential to make the Trial-at-Bar a reality.
It has been highlighted that more High Court Judges and State Counsels would be needed to work at the Trial-at-Bar. (Yohan Perera)