Legal wrangle over appointment of UPFA nationalist MP
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 27 October 2004, 10:42 GMT]
Sri Lanka's Supreme Court (SC) granted special leave to Mr.Ratnasiri Wickremanayake, incumbent Deputy defence Minister and Buddha Sasana
Minister, to proceed with his appeal against the decision of the Court of
Appeal (CA) that it has jurisdiction to hear the Writ Application
challenging his appointment as a MP of the UPFA National List. The SC
further issued interim order staying the further proceedings in the Court
of Appeal until its concludes the inquiry into the appeal by the aggrieved
party, legal sources said.
Mr. Ratnasiri Wickremanayake filed the appeal in the SC challenging the CA
order that the CA has no jurisdiction to hear the Writ Application because
of the constitutional interpretation.
Constitutional Expert Mr.Rohan Edirisingha in his writ application filed in
the CA challenged the appointment of Mr Wickremanayake from the
national list of the UPFA as his name was not included in the original list
that was submitted to the Commissioner General of Elections, legal sources
The petitioner asked the CA to issue a writ of Quo Warrantee declaring that
the appointment of the Mr.Ratnasiri Wickremanayake was invalid and a Writ
of Certiorari quashing the said appointment, and a Writ of Prohibition
prohibiting the Commissioner of Elections from declaring that Mr
Wickremanayake had been appointed as a MP, legal sources said.
At the inquiry held into the Writ Application in the Court of Appeal,
Counsel for the petitioner Mr.Romesh de Silva submitted his objection that
the CA has no jurisdiction to hear the application. But the CA held that it
has jurisdiction to hear the application and decided to hear the Writ
Application of Mr.Rohan Edirisingha, legal sources said.
Hence the petitioner Mr.Ratnasiri Wickremanayake filed an application in
the Supreme Court for special leave to appeal against the decision of the
Court of Appeal.
The application came up for inquiry Monday before a three-member bench of
the Supreme Court comprising Chief Justice Mr.Sarath Silva, Justices
T.B.Weerasuriya and N.K.Udalagama.
President's Counsel Mr.Romesh de Silva with Mr.Sugath Caldera and Ms
Shantha Cooray appeared for Mr Wickremanayake and
Mr.M.A.Sumanthiran appeared for Mr Edirisingha, legal sources said
The three-member bench of the SC having heard the legal submissions of both
parties made interim order staying the decision of the Court of Appeal and
also instructed the CA not to hold further proceedings in the Writ
Application until the appeal by Mr Wickremanayake is disposed,
legal sources said.