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22nd Amendment Bill: SC recommendations to be included

  • Amendments will enable passage with two-thirds
  • Govt. hopeful of securing two-thirds: Rajapakshe

The Government will move to include the recommendations by the Supreme Court (SC) to the proposed 22nd Amendment Bill during the committee stage of the debate prior to the vote in Parliament this week, it is learnt.

Justice Minister Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe told The Sunday Morning that the proposed 22nd Amendment Bill would require only a two-thirds majority in Parliament for the passage of the piece of legislation.

He explained that the Supreme Court in its verdict on the 22nd Amendment Bill had observed that the piece of legislation would require both a two-thirds majority in the House as well as a referendum since several clauses in the Bill required it.

However, Rajapakshe noted that the Government would include the recommendations made by the Supreme Court and that a referendum would not be required as a result. “The Bill can be passed with a two-thirds majority,” he said.

When asked whether the Government was confident of securing a two-thirds majority in Parliament to pass the piece of legislation, Rajapakshe said: “We are hopeful of getting the two-thirds majority in the House.”

It is learnt that among the clauses that are being subjected to changes are ones related to the appointment of ministers and assigning their subjects. The Supreme Court has recommended that they be carried out in consultation with the Prime Minister. 

The 22nd Amendment Bill is scheduled to be debated in Parliament on Thursday (6) and Friday (7), with the vote on the Bill fixed for Friday.

– By Our Political Editor