- Five-judge bench to take up President’s request for opinion on holding PC elections without delimitation report
- SC opinion expected to be given before end-August
A five-judge bench has been appointed to consider whether the Provincial Council elections can be held without a delimitation report, as requested by President Maithripala Sirisena.
Accordingly a five-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Jayantha Jayasuriya, and consisting of Justices Buwaneka Aluwihare, Sisira de Abrew, Prasanna Jayawardena, and Vijith K. Malalgoda will take up the President’s request on 23 August.
President Sirisena has sought a determination from the Supreme Court on whether the Provincial Council elections can be conducted in line with the proportional representation system, which existed before the Provincial Councils (Amendment) Act which was passed in 2017. The Supreme Court is expected to deliver its opinion to the President before the end of August.
Accordingly, the Registrar of the Supreme Court requested the President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) to inform its members about the President’s request, and present any academic or expert opinion on the issue before 21 August.
In the letter sent by the Supreme Court Registrar to the Head of the Bar Association, it states that the President sought the determination of the Supreme Court under Clause 129 (1) of the Constitution. The letter also stated that the matter will be taken up for Supreme Court consideration on 23 August, with a decision to be presented to the President before 30 August.
Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya last month said the Provincial Council elections can be held before 15 October, if the Supreme Court determines that the old electoral system is valid.
The Chairman highlighted that the elections must be held before 15 October under the new system or the old electoral system, as otherwise it would disrupt the Presidential elections, expected to be held between 16 November and 7 December this year.