SC concludes hearings on parliament dissolution; interim order extended with no date fixed for verdict
December 7, 2018 07:22 pm
The Supreme Court today concluded the hearing of the petitions filed challenging the Gazette notification issued by the President dissolving the Parliament.
However, no date was fixed for delivering the verdict in the case, despite the conclusion of hearings at around 7.00 p.m. on Friday (7), the fourth consecutive day of court hearings.
Meanwhile, the interim order issued by the court, suspending the Gazette notification on the dissolution of Parliament, was extended until the verdict is delivered in the case.
During today’s hearing of the petitions, President’s Counsel S. Kanageswaran, representing the Leader of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) R. Sampanthan presented, submissions on behalf of the petitioners.
He stated that the impunity conferred to the President of the country, under Article 35 of the Constitution, in civil or criminal proceedings has been inhibited to a certain extent by the 19th Amendment to the Constitution.
Pointing out that the 19th Amendment to the Constitution has made provisions to file lawsuits under Fundamental Rights against the executive and administrative actions of the President, he said that the official activities of the President can be queried before the court.
Hence the dissolution of the Parliament is also an official activity carried out by the President, it can be challenged before the court under the Fundamental Rights provisions, President’s Counsel Kanageswaran has further said.
The rest of the attorneys appearing on behalf of the petitioners have also presented submissions in this regard.
The seven-member judge bench of the Supreme Court commenced hearings of the petitions this morning for the fourth consecutive day.
The petitioners presented submissions before the court today in response to the submissions of the intermediate petitioners.
The Supreme Court yesterday (06) extended the interim order issued suspending the Gazette Notification issued by the President on the dissolution of Parliament, until tomorrow (08).
Presenting submissions before the Supreme Court on the 5th of December, the Attorney General had stated that in accordance with Article 38 (02) of the Constitution, the Supreme Court does not have the legal authority to hear these fundamental rights petitions filed against the parliamentary dissolution.
The judge bench consisting of Supreme Court Justices consisting of Chief Justice Nalin Perera, Priyantha Jayawardena, Prasanna Jayawardena, Sisira de Abrew, Vijith Malalgoda, Buwaneka Aluwihare and Murdu Fernando commenced hearing the petitions on the 4th of December.
The petitions have been filed by political parties including United National Party (UNP), Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), Tamil Progressive Alliance (TPA) and the All Ceylon People’s Congress.
Organisations and activists such as the Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA), Attorney Aruna Laksiri and also a member of Elections Commission Prof. S. R. H. Hoole have also filed petitions.