Former Speaker Karu Jayasuriya today defended the actions he took after the political crisis erupted in the country, and strongly defended the allegations raised against him.
In a statement, Jayasuriya said that the Constitution must be defended and it has been his privilege to stand up to the Executive and defend the rights of Parliament, the supremacy of the Constitution and the sovereignty of the people.
“As a former military officer, I have always been prepared to make whatever sacrifice that my country may require of me. It has been my privilege to stand up to the executive and defend the rights of Parliament, the supremacy of our Constitution and the sovereignty of the people. For the record I am prepared to face any consequences for these actions without hesitation,” he said.
He said that since the President has prevented Parliament from ruling on the legitimacy of the President’s recent actions, it will be up to the Supreme Court to determine the legality of these actions.
“As the custodian of Parliament, I have watched over the last two weeks as the Executive Branch has seized the rights and usurped the powers of Members of Parliament who were elected to represent the people. The willful disregard demonstrated by the Executive towards Parliament, the engine of Sri Lanka’s sovereignty, leaves the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens at grave risk of similar abuse,” he said.
Jayasuriya urged all public servants who have sworn an oath to defend the Constitution to revisit that oath, remember their obligations to the supreme law of the motherland, and safeguard the independence of the public service, police and the judiciary.
He also slammed comments made by Foreign Minister Sarath Amunugama who had accused him of attempting to prevent the President from delivering the Statement of Government Policy when Parliament was set to reconvene on 14th November.
He said no member made a request that the Statement of Government Policy be prevented nor would he have entertained such a request. (Colombo Gazette)