Lankapage Logo Recent Top Stories
CP 14 YEARS
Go Home Home Serving the Sri Lankan community globally since 2000
go to LankaPage.com

Leading News from Sri Lanka::

* Sri Lanka constitutional crisis deepens as lawyers refuse to accept a new Chief Justice
Mon, Jan 14, 2013, 08:20 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Jan 14, Colombo: The constitutional crisis created by the controversial dismissal of the Chief Justice in Sri Lanka by the President deepened today as the country's lawyers refused to accept a new Chief Justice and the opposition refused to take part in the nomination process.

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa today held a special meeting with the representatives of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) including its Chairman United National Party Parliamentarian Wijedasa Rajapakshe at Temple Trees to discuss the current situation and appointment of a new Chief Justice.

During the meeting the President has stressed that he would not allow the special groups to take political mileage out of the situation and drag the country back to the time it was "ruled by a leaflet."

The President has asked the Bar Association not to make the judiciary a playground for groups trying to achieve political objectives.

The Bar Association representatives have denied any affiliations to such groups and noted that such groups are attempting to gain political mileage at the cost of the Association.

Justice Minister Rauf Hakeem, External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris, and Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga also participated in the meeting with the Bar Association.

Meanwhile, another lawyers'' organization in Sri Lanka, Lawyers Collective has refused to accept the appointment of a new Chief Justice since the removal of the incumbent Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake is illegal.

The Lawyers Collective told a news conference today that the struggle against the unconstitutional removal of the Chief Justice and the threat to judicial independence would be taken to the next level and called for a united fight to safeguard the independence of the country's judiciary.

The group appealed to the judges, lawyers and citizens of the country to unite to fight for the independence of the judiciary and the rule of law in the country. Senior Attorney at Law, Jayantha Wickramaratne said that any promotion, transfer or any other action of the Judicial Services Commission (JSC) would also be illegal if a new Chief Justice is appointed in an illegal manner.

The Lawyers Collective observed that the country was facing its darkest hour where the foundation of independence of the judiciary, the rule of law and all basic norms of a working democracy were at stake.

Meanwhile, the Chief Justice has not yet made any official comment on her dismissal but her lawyer has told the media that she will not recognize the legality of her ouster.

She has however, informed the Registrar of the Supreme Court that she will be vacating her official residence but she will be in the court Tuesday.

The Parliamentary Council which is mandated to make key appointments under the 18th Amendment will meet Tuesday to nominate a new Chief Justice. However, the opposition members of the Council Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremasinghe and MP D.M. Swaminathan have announced that they will not attend the Council meeting.

(Photos by Chandana Perera)



ColomboPage - Recent 10 Stories
Sri Lanka's migrant workers' organization pledges support to opposition candidate
-- [25 minutes ago]
Sri Lanka ruling party supporters attack UNP rally in Haputale
-- [2 hours ago]
Landslide warning issued for 4 districts in Sri Lanka
-- [2 hours ago]
Sri Lankan President says common opposition candidate copied his budget proposals
-- [2 hours ago]
Two Russian naval ships arrive at Sri Lanka port
-- [3 hours ago]
Heavy rains in Sri Lanka cause havoc with floods
-- [3 hours ago]
India to export two warships to Sri Lanka
-- [4 hours ago]
Sri Lanka Election Commissioner asks employers to grant leave for workers to vote
International Gem, Mineral & Jewellery trade show opens in Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka Police to investigate ruling party minister taking suspects of arson attack away from police custody

Copyright © 2000, 2012 by LankaPage.com (LLC) :
The news and other contents on ColomboPage are copyrighted property of LankaPage.com, LLC. Any unauthorized use of any information on ColomboPage may constitute a violation of copyright laws. You need written permission to reproduce, republish, post, transmit, broadcast or distribute, material from this site from LankaPage.com, LLC. However, news organizations or broadcasters in Sri Lanka may republish the news items in ColomboPage with proper acknowledgment to ColomboPage.