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Chief Justice Appoints Five Judge Bench to Hear Supreme Court Appeal by Galle District MP Geetha Kumarasinghe.

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Lakmal Sooriyagoda

The Chief Justice has nominated a fuller bench comprising five judges of the Supreme Court to hear an appeal filed by Galle district parliamentarian Geetha Kumarasinghe.

A five-judge-Bench headed by Chief Justice Priyasath Dep will hear this appeal in due course.

Several respondents, the residents of Galle district who were original petitioners of Geetha Kumarasinghe’s dual citizenship case had filed motions in the Supreme Court seeking a fuller Bench to hear the appeal. They had also requested an inquiry into the conduct and manner on which the Supreme Court appeal was handled by court officials. Delivering its judgement on the writ petition filed by five residents of Galle district, the Court of Appeal on March 3 held that in terms of Article 91(1) (d) (xiii) of the constitution, Geetha Kumarasinghe is not qualified to be elected as a Member of Parliament since she holds dual citizenship in Switzerland and Sri Lanka.

Subsequently, MP Geetha Kumarasinghe filed an Appeal in the Supreme Court challenging the Court of Appeal judgment.

On May 15, a divided three-judge-Supreme Court bench had granted special leave to appeal with the petition filed by Mrs. Kumarasinghe.

The Supreme Court also issued an Interim Order until the final determination of the petition, staying the operation of judgement made by the Court of Appeal which declared that Geetha Kumarasinghe was disqualified to be a Member of Parliament and thus not entitled to hold this office.

Through an appeal petition, Galle District UPFA MP Geetha Kumarasinghe sought an order to set aside the judgment dated May 3, 2017 by the Court of Appeal.

In this petition, Geetha Kumarasinghe had cited N.W.E. Buwaneka of Beddegama, J.K. Amarawardhana of Yatalamatta, A.C. Gunasekara of Unawatuna, J.K. Wijesinghe of Ambalangoda and H.L.Prasanna Deepthilal of Galle, Controller General of Immigration and Emigration, the Secretary General of Parliament and several others as respondents.

President’s Counsel Romesh de Silva is appearing for MP Geetha Kumarasinghe. President’s Counsel J. C. Weliamuna with Chandaka Jayasundara PC and counsel Asela Rekawa are appearing on behalf of the respondents. Senior Deputy Solicitor General Janak de Silva is Appearing for the Secretary General of Parliament and Controller of Immigration and Emigration in this appeal.

Courtesy:Daily News

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