No third party can question Parliament’s affairs – Dy Speaker
Posted on January 3rd, 2013

Chaminda Perera – Courtesy The Daily News 

No third party can question affairs of Parliament. No institution, other than the Legislature has been vested power in relation to the removal of Supreme Court Justices including the Chief Justice under the Constitution, Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody said yesterday. He was addressing a special press conference at the Parliament complex yesterday.

Weerakkody said former Speaker Anura Bandaranaike ruled that the Legislature is supreme and incumbent Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa gave a ruling on the same lines when notices were issued by the Supreme Court.

He insisted the same ruling will be applicable to the Court of Appeal Order too, the Deputy Speaker said.

“Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa’s ruling is applicable in all affairs in Parliament in the future too,” he said.

He said the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) conducted investigations into the charges by a group of parliamentarians against the incumbent Chief Justice under 107 section of the Constitution.

Weerakkody said the PSC has not taken any decision over the removal of the Chief Justice nor has she been convicted of the impeachment charges.

He said Parliament will have to take a decision over this report.

“The final decision regarding the PSC report is taken by Parliament,” Weerakkody said.

He said party leaders can decide the dates of debate over the PSC report after January 8.

Weerakkody said Parliamentarians can debate the PSC report.

“If a majority of legislators decide that the incumbent Chief Justice has to be removed, the Speaker will refer the view of the majority to the President for action.”

He said the Judiciary has not been involved in any matter coming under the purview of the legislature in England and the United Nations is also following the same procedure.

The Deputy Speaker said Parliamentarians and parliamentary staff should take prior approval from the Speaker to appear before court or any institution over affairs of the Parliament.

He said if any Member of Parliament gave evidence before the Court of Appeal yesterday, Parliament can take action against them. Weerakkody was of the view that their conduct can be called into question in Parliament. He said Parliament can also take action against them over contempt of Parliament.

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