Petition challenging GR’s citizenship politically motivated – Counsel CA to resume hearing today
Posted on October 3rd, 2019

By Chitra Weerarathne and A.J. Abeynayake Courtesy The Island

Romesh de Silva PC, Counsel for SLPP presidential candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa yesterday requested the Court of Appeal to dismiss a petition challenging the former defence secretary’s citizenship as it was a politically motivated application.

Pointing out that the then President Mahinda Rajapaksa had signed Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s Citizenship Certificate by exercising powers following his election as the President at the Nov 2005 presidential poll, PC de Silva said that the Court of Appeal should only consider whether the President endorsed it at the correct time.

The Court of Appeal will take up the case again at 9.30 am today (04)

Earlier in the day, the Court of Appeal yesterday directed the Deputy Solicitor General Nerin Pulle to submit a sworn affidavit from the relevant authorities to explain why any file related to the dual citizenship issue of Gotabaya Rajapaksa is not in the Department of Emigration & Immigration. The Deputy Solicitor General replied that he would attend to the matter without any delay.

At the outset Counsel Janaka de Silva told the Court of Appeal that on Tuesday it was told in objections that if the petition was allowed the sovereignty and the franchise of the people to vote would be affected as the eligibility of the candidate was of primary importance. Janak de Silva appeared for the Minister of Home Affairs Vajira Abeywardena. The Counsel referred to article 4 of the Constitution of Sri Lanka.

Accordingly the legislative power was exercised by the Parliament elected by the people. The complex thought processes in Article 3 and 4 were expressed by the rest of the Constitution, the counsel said.

Article 4(a) talks about the legislative power of an elected Parliament. Most of the laws are subject to an approval by the people, at a referendum, although the Parliament passes the laws, the Counsel said.

The Provincial laws are passed by the Provincial Councils, Article 4(6), explains that all executive powers are not vested in the President only. The people derive that power from the Constitution, the Counsel said.

The Article (30) of the Constitution, state that the President is the Head of the Government and the Commander of the Armed forces; the term ‘executive’ is broader than the term ‘government’.

The Executive comprises the President, Constitutional Council, the Cabinet of Ministers and the Public Service. Article (33) speaks of the power of the President. Article (43) (1) states that there shall be a Cabinet of Ministers, charged with the direction and the Central of the Government, the Cabinet is collectively responsible to Parliament.

To say that the power of the President is limitless is clashing with the Constitution.

To say that the power of the President is plenary is not falling in line with the Constitution.

The Executive power is the power of the people. It is not vested in the President alone, Counsel explained.

Counsel said that files relevant to the dual citizenship issue of Gotabaya Rajapaksa were not in the Department of the Commissioner General of Emigration & Immigration.

Counsel Gamini Marapana P.C. objected to that statement by Counsel Chanaka de Silva stating that he was being briefing baselessly by his client.

Counsel Marapana P.C. appeared for former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is a respondent and who is alleged, according to the petitioners, to have certified the citizenship application of Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

Romesh de Silva P.C. appeared with M.U.M. Ali Sabry P.C. and Sugath Caldera for Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

Counsel Gamini Marapana objected that Counsel Chanaka de Silva is not strictly referring to the relevant facts of the writ before the court.

The Bench comprised Justice Yasantha Kodagoda (President), Justice Janak de Silva and Justice Mahinda Samayawardene.

Two petitioners Professor Chandraguptha Thenuwara and Gamini Viyangoda had alleged in their petition that Gotabaya Rajapaksa has not duly withdrawn his USA citizenship. Hence he is a dual citizen and cannot contest for the Presidency of Sri Lanka.

3 Responses to “Petition challenging GR’s citizenship politically motivated – Counsel CA to resume hearing today”

  1. Ratanapala Says:

    The Laws of a country are there to serve the people and the nation as a whole and not vice-versa. Granting of Dual Citizenship to Gotabhaya Rajapakse took place at a time of war and the President of the country needed the services of his brother to fulfil a highly confidential as well as critical position for the war effort. The nation of Sri Lanka is all privy to the role performed by Gotabhya in that position and the successful conclusion of a war effort which was deemed impossible even by all-knowing war pundits in Sri Lanka and abroad.

    Even otherwise to my knowledge, a position in an administration does not go vacant due to the absence of the usual operator. At all times an administration exists in a country – even during the transition period between two administrations!

    What is termed, as “residual responsibility” remains at all times to continue the necessary services. In this case, it is apparent that the President as the Head of the Cabinet and as the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces has taken over that responsibility and acted quite correctly to enable him to fill the vacancy of the Secretary of Defence in the most timely manner.

    Moreover, the petitioners had nearly fifteen years to bring this matter before courts if indeed they genuinely thought that an infringement on the law of the land has taken place. To bring such an accusation at the cusp of an election to a popular leader can only be considered an act of malice and an attempt to deprive the voting public their democratic choice at the coming Presidential Election on 16 November this year.

    These very same petitioners were so curiously silent when the then Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe (- appointed without a majority by a President who has now become a hateful court jester) unlawfully took over part of the Finance Ministry that included the Central Bank under his authority and robbed and pauperised an entire nation in terms of direct losses in the Bond Market, raised interest rates in the banks and in general all taxes.

    It is now common knowledge how he went on to put in place a well-planned fraud on the people of Sri Lanka, now infamously called the Central Bank Bond Scam. As a part of this fraud, he also appointed a non-citizen to the position of the Governor of the Central Bank, Arjuna Mahendran who is now a fugitive before the law. Not only did they rob the Central Bank once in February 2015, the similar but more disastrous fraud was committed in March 2016 while still keeping the same Governor in charge of the Central Bank.

    The NGO Dollar Wallahs know their time to make dollars is fast coming to an end and are doing their utmost to fulfil the wishes of their masters the traitorous murderous UNP and their masters – the Christian Western Powers!

  2. Ananda-USA Says:

    Very well said, Ratnapala!

  3. Ananda-USA Says:

    I PREDICTED this CLEARCUT decision by the Supreme Court, assering that Mahinda as the Executive President of Sri Lanka had the FULL and COMPLETE AUTHORITY to grant dual-citizenship to Gotabhaya in the NATIONAL INTEREST as VINDICATED by Gota’s SUBSEQUENT PERDORMANE in office.

    This EASY PREDICTION was made in opposition to various contrary arguments advanced by both Dilrook and Randeniyage in their ongoing quest to UNDERMINE Gota’s CANDIDACY for the Presidency of Sri Lanka!!

    The Supreme Court DISMISEED OUT OF HAND without EXAMINATION of WITNESSES or ISSUING a TEMPORARY INJUNCTION, demonstrating with CRYSTAL CLARITY the lack of a BASIS IN FACT in the case filed before it.

    ONCE AGAIN, the DESPARATE Yamapalanaya BITES THE DUST in its desperate effort to PREVENT Gota from DEMOLISHING ALL OTHER CANDIDATES at the Presidential hustings!

    JAYAWEWA Deshapremini, Jayawewa! Apey Uthum Aaadaraneeya Maubima Deshapremi APEY ATHATA NAVATHATH LABENA BAWA SAHATHIKAI!!

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