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Opp. wants P’ment resolution on SLC

Opp. wants P’ment resolution on SLC

08 Nov 2023 | BY Sahan Tennekoon

  • Seeks Justice Minister’s intervention on ‘corruption’, Kiriella slams CA stay order
  • Dolawatte says new interim comm. can be appointed by Sports Minister
  • Roshan Ranasinghe to make spl. P’ment statement today, notes lack of time to object to SLC Chair’s petition 

The Parliamentary Opposition yesterday (7) urged the Sports Minister Roshan Ranasinghe to submit a resolution in Parliament in order to rescue the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) from its purportedly corrupt administration, adding that they would endorse if such will be tabled.

Speaking in Parliament following a 14-day stay order being issued by the Court of Appeal (CA) preventing the operation of the seven-member interim committee appointed for the SLC and the relevant gazette notification issued by Ranasinghe in this regard, Opposition and Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) Leader Sajith Premadasa said that Parliament should intervene in the matter since this issue has now become a public issue, and that therefore, it (Parliament) should support the move taken by the Minister if the Executive branch attempts to block those corrupt administrators being punished.

Meanwhile, the Chief Opposition Whip and SJB Parliamentarian, attorney Lakshman Kiriella said that there is a suspicion behind the decision taken by the CA to issue a stay order, claiming that it (CA) has no moral right to do so when the Auditor General’s report has already disclosed the corruption within the SLC. “We debated a whole day regarding this matter and on the information unveiled by the Auditor General’s report into the SLC. In that report, it was clearly stated that some corruption has taken place. Therefore, I would like to call the Minister of Justice to intervene in the matter,” he said.

In response to the Opposition MPs, Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna Government MP, attorney Premnath C. Dolawatte stated that the Sports Minister can appoint a new interim committee despite the CA's stay order and that such can be presented to the House.

However, Ranasinghe said that the Ministry had no sufficient time to make objections to the petition filed by the SLC Chairman and that the CA had issued the order as soon as it was filed. He said that they will make every possible effort to rescue the SLC and to make a special statement in the Parliament today (8) regarding the matter.

This controversial order was delivered by a two-Judge bench consisting of the CA President, Justice Nissanka Bandula Karunaratne and Justice Vikum Kaluarachchi yesterday after considering a writ petition filed by the Chairman of the SLC Shammi Silva. Accordingly, the Court has issued three stay orders in total pertaining to the matter: the first to prevent the gazette issued by the Sports Minister appointing the interim committee for the SLC, the second to prevent the interim committee members Chaired by Arjuna Ranatunga from acting in their respective positions and the third to prevent the respondents including the Sports Minister from interfering in the activities of the petitioner and the other officials of the Cricket Board.

Ranasinghe on Monday (6) appointed a seven-member interim committee for SLC, Chaired by former World Cup winning Captain Ranatunga. He formed the interim committee for SLC under the authority granted to him by the Sports Law, No. 25 of 1973, to be in effect from Monday while the previous Board was also suspended, the Sports Ministry had announced. The interim committee consists of the following members: retired Supreme Court (SC) Judge, Justice S.I. Imam, retired SC Judge, Justice Rohini Marasinghe, retired High Court Judge Irangani Perera, Ranatunga, Upali Dharmadasa, attorney Rakitha Rajapakshe and Hisham Jamaldeen.

However, it was later reported that President Ranil Wickremesinghe had not been notified about the decision to appoint such an interim committee or regarding the composition of its members. The President had only come to know of the appointment of such an interim committee for the SLC through the media reports, according to internal sources.

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