General Secretary of Vinivida PeramunaNagananda Kodituwakku today filed a Fundamental Rights petition in Supreme Court seeking a declaration that Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa, UNP leader Ranil Wickremasinghe and Rev. Athuraliye RatanaThera are disqualified and not entitled to be elected as Members of Parliament of the SLPP, UNP and Ape Jana Bala Paksaya respectively.

The Petitioner states that on 06th July 2021 Jayantha Katagoda who was appointed through the National List of the SLPP resigned from office to pave way for Basil Rajapaksa who is a US citizen to occupy office as a National List MP. The Petitioner states that due to his US citizenship Basil Rajapaksa had been disqualified from contesting the Parliamentary Election–2020 or to have his name entered in the National List Nomination List tendered by the Party Secretary of SLPP to the Election Commission.

The Petitioner states that on 07th July 2021 the Election Commission ‘elected’ Basil Rajapaksa as a National List MP in terms of Section 64 (5) of the Parliamentary Election Act No 1 of 1981 as amended by the Act No 35 of 1988 which was enacted further to the unlawful certification of the flawed 14th Amendment on 24th of May 1988 by the Speaker.

The Petitioner states the sovereignty in the people which includes the election of MPs is an inalienable right protected by the Constitution itself and the people’s right to elect Members of Parliament at their choice, is an essential ingredient of sovereignty in the people, which cannot be defeated by way of an ordinary piece of legislation like Parliamentary Election Act.

Kodituwakku states the supreme law of the land, the Constitution, clearly specified that National List nominations shall be presented to the Election Commission within one week from the Notice received by the Party Secretaries from the Election Commission.

The Petitioner states that the General Secretary of UNP and General Secretary of Ape Jana Bala Paksaya had failed to comply with the Notices served on them by the former Election Commission Chairman within the mandatory period specified by the Article 99A of the Constitution to tender the names to the fill the two National List MP slots allocated for their respective political parties by the Election Commission.

The Petitioner states that he is entitled to a declaration that his right to equality and equal treatment before the law under Article 12(1) has been violated by the Election Commission who had elected Ranil Wickremasinghe and Ven. Athuraliye Ratana Thera without jurisdiction.

The petitioner had named Election Commission, former Chairman of the Election Commission Mahinda Deshapriya, Election Commission Chairman Nimal G. Punchihewa, UNP former General Secretary Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, Ape Jana Bala Paksaya General Secretary Rev. Wedinigama Wimalatissa, SLPP General Secretary Sagara Kariyawasam and several others as respondents.


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