BASL expresses grave concern over proposed constitutional changes
Posted on October 23rd, 2017

Courtesy The Island

*… poses dozen queries to govt. seeking answers

*… questions fate of unitary character of state

*… frowns on apparent bid to introduce federalism

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The Bar Council of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka, at a special meeting, yesterday (23) resolved to express its grave concern about the proposed amendments to Articles 1 and 2 of the present Constitution.

The Bar Council also noted that proposed amendments in the Interim of the Constitutional Assembly of Sri Lanka had the effect of converting the Unitary character of the State to a Federal structure.

The Bar Council resolved to write to the government, urging it to respond precisely and with clarity to inter-alia the following questions:

1. What is the need/requirement for a new Constitution?

2. a) Will Sri Lanka continue to be Unitary?

b) If so, what [in brief] is the concept of a Unitary State?

3. What powers will be devolved on the Provinces?

4. a) Can the Central Government/ Parliament get back such powers if necessary?

b) if so, in what manner?

5. In appropriate circumstances, would the President have the power to exercise direct rule in the Provinces?

6. Will the Executive Presidency be abolished?

7. a) What would be the Court structure?

i. Will there be a Constitutional Court?

ii. If so, how are the Judges to that Court to be appointed?

a) How are Judges of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal appointed?

8) i. Will there be criteria for such appointment?

ii. If so, what are they?

9.How will the judges of the Superior Courts be removed?

10. Will all Judges of the District Courts and Magistrates Courts throughout the country be appointed by the Judicial Services Commission and will their transfers and discipline subject only to the judicial Services?

11.

a. What are the Fundamental Rights that would be justiciable?

b. In what Courts would the Rights be justiciable?

12. Would the Courts have the power [up to a limited period of time] to review legislation if inconsistent with the Constitution?

The  BASL communique issued regarding the Bar Council Special meeting was signed by its President U.R. De Silva, PC.

One Response to “BASL expresses grave concern over proposed constitutional changes”

  1. Ananda-USA Says:

    While VERY IMPORTANT, the unitary nature and state sponsorship of Buddhism ARE NOT the MOST IMPORTANT of the issues with the New Constitution.

    The DEVOLUTION of EXCESSIVE POWER to SEPARATIST MINORITIES IS the MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE with the New Constitution.

    ThIS LEVEL of DEVOLUTION of POWER COMPLETELY UNDERMINES and NEGATES those PALLIATIVE Statements EMBEDDED in the New Constitution to placate the IGNORANT among the Sinhala Buddhists, including the Malwatte Mahaayake Thera, whose mypic view is NO DOUBT seeded by liberal financial bribes!

    Those PALLIATIVE words assuring the Unitary Nature and Protection for Buddhism are CONFUSING and MISLEADING in that the words used in Sinhala, Tamil and English mean completely different things, as pointed out by many patriots.

    MY OVER-RIDING CONCERN is that there is LITTLE DEBATE and ORGANIZED OPPOSITION to the VERY NOTION of DEVOLVING POWER to DEMONSTRATED SEPARATISTS just a few years after the conclusion of a SEPARATISM-DRIVEN WAR!

    In my VIEW, this is a PRESCRIPTION for NATIONAL SUICIDE, that DISMANTLES the LAST BARRIERS and yields to the SEPARATISTS the LAST OF THE AMMUNITION they need for a UNILATERAL DECLARATION of Independence with the blessings of the Western Supporters of the Tamil Diaspora, including their PUPPET United Nations!

    This attempt to HOIST a New Constitution, crafted by SEPARATISTS, MINORITY COMMUNITIES and the NeoColonial West, MUST BE DEFEATED, and PREVENTED from seeing the LIGHT of DAY!

    This DESHA-DROHI Yamapalana Government OF the SEPARATISTS, BY the SEPARATISTS, FOR the SEPARATISTS ,attempting to DISMANTLE and DESTROY Sri Lanka must NOT be allowed to SURVIVE this 2017 year , and MUST BE OUSTED at the earliest possible opportunity!

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