Supreme Court today granted leave to proceed with a Fundamental Rights petition filed challenging the failure and refusal of several government departments to take the necessary steps to hold the Local Government Elections.
Supreme Court three-judge-bench comprising Justices Preethi Padman Surasena, Gamini Amerasekera and Janak De Silva granted leave to proceed with the petition under Articles 10, 12(1) and 14(1)(a) of the constitution.
The Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) and its Executive Director Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu filed this petition naming the Treasury Secretary, Government Printer, Inspector General of Police and several others as respondents.
The petitioners stated that the elections to elect persons as members of local authorities are required to be held every 04 years in terms of the relevant statutes. Elections were previously held in 2018, and the term of the Local Authorities that were due to expire in 2022 were ended for a year thereafter.
The petitioners stated that the conduct of the Government Printer and the Inspector General of Police is indicative of a coordinated campaign to procrastinate the holding of local Authority elections. The petitioners also stated that the President in the capacity as the Minister of Finance and the Secretary to the Treasury have not until the very last minute on the 23rd of February 2023 indicated that there is a challenging in the allocation of funds to conduct the elections.
The petitioners maintained that these actions are prejudicial to the fundamental rights of the petitioners and the citizens of Sri Lanka.
The petitioners are highlighting that the failure of the Government Printer, IGP, President Ranil Wickremesinghe (as Finance Minister) and the Election Commission failed to protect the fundamental rights of citizens, by failing to take proper steps as required by law to hold elections by 19th March as made compulsory in terms of the Municipal Councils Ordinance, Urban Councils Ordinance and Pradeshiya Sabhas Act.
Senior Counsel Viran Corea with Luwie Ganeshathasan and Khyati Wikramanayake appeared for the petitioners. Senior Additional Solicitor General Priyantha Nawana appeared for the respondents.(Lakmal Sooriyagoda )
Lion Thursday, 16 March 2023 06:26 PM
Hope honorable judges will deliver a judgment protecting the democratic rights of the people of this country.
dinesh Thursday, 16 March 2023 08:48 PM
Good, all of them need to be held responsible...and hope most of them will get punishments someday soon...
Ranjith Thursday, 16 March 2023 10:11 PM
One country one law, nobody is above the law, The people elect, the President, members of parliament, provisional councillors and local government members. Please protect our rights and hold the local government elections immediately. We cannot go back to stone age.
Power hungry rulers to be or hungry masses Thursday, 16 March 2023 10:21 PM
There is a rule to uphold the democratic rights of our people; There is also another rule that calls for a prudent decision facing the bankrupt nation, to save every cent for the survival of citizen. Election at this juncture becomes not only a luxury, but wastage of limited resources, to satiate the power hungry rulers to be, we can't afford to indulge in. What will the learned judges decide?
johan Thursday, 16 March 2023 10:53 PM
This will give more chance to the opponents to postpone the elections
Ranjith Perera Friday, 17 March 2023 12:38 AM
This is the only pillar that we can trust upon to safeguard our rights and protect our freedom as an individual and society as a whole from excess of both executive branch and legislator.
Ram Friday, 17 March 2023 01:51 AM
Sri Lankans are living in HOPE Please Hon SC have this heard and concluded as fast as possible so that we will know what our rights are
Pradeep Friday, 17 March 2023 09:25 AM
Expect justice from the judiciary, you can prevent this country from another disaster
Man Friday, 17 March 2023 09:47 AM
Elections won't be held as the Ranil's priority is so long and the election will be the last, for ever. Thank you doctor for action unlike any other reputed party and need to punish all the responsible offices, barring Ranil as Elections are allergic for him, till his death, if occurs, some day. His death is also doubtful as of an elite family of tacticians of repute.
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