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Constitutional Council rejects President’s Supreme Court pick

2 February 2024 08:55 am - 20     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Colombo, Feb 02 (Daily Mirror) -  The Constitutional Council (CC) has declined to endorse the nomination of Court of Appeal President Nissanka Bandula Karunaratne as a Supreme Court judge by President Ranil Wickremesinghe triggering him to be on a collision course with the parliamentary body, Daily Mirror learns.

The President and the CC are now on a warpath because presidential nominees to key positions are rejected. Previously, the President faced an issue in getting service exemptions granted to former Inspector General of Police C.D. Wickramaratne approved by the CC. The CC is a ten-member body chaired by Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena. Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa and Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardane are the other two ex-officio members. Besides, it is represented by the Prime Minister’s nominee, the Opposition Leader’s nominee and the President’s nominee. Besides, three slots are reserved for members from civil society. One seat is meant for the representative of the minority parties. However, it has not been filled yet.

Daily Mirror learns that only the Prime Minister, the President’s nominee Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva and Prime Minister’s nominee Sagara Kariyawasam stand for the President’s decisions. With the denial of majority support, the President has found it difficult to execute his decisions.

It appeared that this prompted him to issue a statement on Wednesday critical of the latest development.

A statement from the President’s Media Division (PMD) said, “The President of the Republic of Sri Lanka under Article 4(b) of the Constitution is the organ of government through which the executive power of the People including the Defence of Sri Lanka is exercised.

The President as the head of the executive is duty-bound to make certain appointments to high offices, including the Inspector General of Police, according to the procedure stipulated by the Constitution and in line with the President’s Constitutional duty to exercise powers pertaining to the Defence of Sri Lanka.

Therefore, the President must perform his Constitutional duties without any impediment or interference. Under Article 41C of the Constitution, the appointment of the Inspector General of Police is carried out subsequent to a recommendation made by the President to the Constitutional Council, and on the approval of such recommendation by the Constitutional Council.

Any restraint placed on the President in the performance of his Constitutional duty would be in contravention of the Constitution. If the President exercises his powers contrary to the Constitution, the remedies available have been provided for in the Constitution itself.”

The President is now seeking to refer the matter to Parliament.

  Comments - 20

  • Christo255 Friday, 02 February 2024 09:10 AM

    He's the presidents yes man. On this instance I salute the CC for standing for what is right. Remember the SLC saga?

    THE TRUE Friday, 02 February 2024 09:25 AM


    Ranil the protector of criminals Friday, 02 February 2024 09:32 AM

    All presidents actions must be thoroughly scrutinized, because he is only motivated by clinging on to power at the detriment of the citizens.

    Tissa Fernando Friday, 02 February 2024 09:52 AM

    Complicated useless system to satisfy some people. But their opposition to the appointment of Bandula Karunaratne is justified given his recent activities involving the cricket board issue.

    A Amaraweera Friday, 02 February 2024 10:18 AM

    Basic question is if CC is subject to the executive power then what is the use of having a CC?

    Showcase Saturday, 03 February 2024 07:12 AM

    Absolutely. Just a show case that such a thing exist. Wasting another set of funds to maintain this council.

    Waco Friday, 02 February 2024 10:36 AM

    This president is not properly appointed. He has no mandate , hence appointed only as a night watchmen. With the help of the rouges in the parliament, he continuing. Where is the Democracy in Sri Lanka.

    Bye La Friday, 02 February 2024 11:27 AM

    Gotha was very properly elected. He was improperly ejected. So then lets ask him to take over the country full of perfectionists. After all only he was properly elected.

    Bernard Jayatilake Friday, 02 February 2024 10:40 AM

    At last he has faced his Waterloo.

    sam Friday, 02 February 2024 11:14 AM

    Yes man rejected

    A descendant of King Kekille Friday, 02 February 2024 11:17 AM

    Don't worry. The Constitutional Council will give in and ultimately the President will have his way as did happen in the past.

    The Observer Friday, 02 February 2024 12:43 PM

    Not sure how long this would prevail as no one in current parliament is reliable. However, this is a good trend for execution of the expected checks and balances embedded in the Constitution from the perspective of democracy. Most of the appointments and nominations of RW are inappropriate and they are often persons with serious allegations. RW only considers whether the appointee will be under his control. The People should be vigilant to protect the Supreme Court and other higher courts from corrupt and political appointments as it's the courts that have become the only recourse in the face of the dictatorship.

    Patcitz Friday, 02 February 2024 12:51 PM

    As a figurehead - installed by the US PLOT- self-proclaimed leader Ranil has only to focus on reviving the economy, any arbitrary constitutional changes he forcibly pushes forward are considered unconstitutional and contrary to the rights of the people. Holding elections on time and retiring politics, leaving youth to take leadership is a decent and vital part that the very people of this country are expecting from RANIL.

    18th amendment Friday, 02 February 2024 12:56 PM

    Gota go home

    Mahila Friday, 02 February 2024 01:46 PM

    Parliament will approve overwhelmingly, then CC!!??

    Ram Friday, 02 February 2024 02:28 PM

    If the President has power under the Constitution to appoint his nominee despite the CC not agreeing, then why have the CC at a cost to all of us. Disband the CC

    Gayantha Hemachandra Friday, 02 February 2024 03:33 PM

    It seems now majority of CC members have balls to stand up against this particular nominee of the president while others have not. Let’s enjoy the drama unfolding from that disgusting hut in Diyawannawa.

    Upali Jayatilaka Friday, 02 February 2024 05:36 PM

    The decent thing is for that Judge to retire and go home. Keep the dignity of the SC and the Legal fraternity. Obviously there is something that he should know where in the eyes of the public he has discredited himself with some action when he has held office. Time to go home. One was called Pissu Pussa . Before we hear another similar to that

    Buddhist Friday, 02 February 2024 08:32 PM

    Will the CC be reconfigured with new members after the new session of the Parliament, or will it remain the same?

    Nimal Saturday, 03 February 2024 09:31 AM

    Don't worry, with elections looming the caretaker President is on his final months in office.

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