DNA to go before SC

Saturday, 9 October 2010 01:01 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

New bench to hear Fonseka's appeal

Democratic National Alliance (DNA) has decided to take the matter of removing former Army Commander and DNA Leader Sarath Fonseka from his parliamentary seat before the Supreme Court.

DNA Secretary and parliamentarian Vijitha Herath said the party would go to courts against the decision to vacate Fonseka's parliamentary seat.

Herath explained that a court martial did not come under the Constitution and an MP would only lose a parliamentary seat if a civil court, according to the Constitution, convicts him.

Meanwhile the Court of Appeal yesterday fixed the hearing of the appeal filed by imprisoned Sri Lankan ex-Army Commander Sarath Fonseka against the verdict of the first court martial for 15 October.

When the appeal was considered yesterday, it was announced that Judge D.S.C. Lecamwasam had stepped down from the panel of judges for personal reasons.

The prosecution objected to President of the Court, Judge Sathya Hettige and a new bench comprising judges Rohini Marasinghe and Upaly Abeyrathne was appointed to hear the appeal.

The first court martial cashiered the four star general who bid unsuccessfully in January for the presidency of the state.

The appeal names current Army Commander, the three judges in the first court martial and the judge advocate as respondents in the case seeking to annul the decision of the military tribunal.