Five-judge SC bench to consider FR on MCC deal

A five-judge bench has been appointed by the Supreme Court to consider the Fundamental Rights petition submitted against the proposed Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) agreement.

The five-judge bench is to be chaired by Supreme Court Judge Buwaneka Aluvihare and will include justices Buwaneka Aluvihare, L. T B. Dehideniya, Murdu Fernando, S. Thurairajah, and Gamini Amarasekera.

The Supreme Court decided to consider the petitions on 13th November.

The Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA), Attorney-at-Law Dharshana Weeraduwa and the Venerable Anguruwelle Jinananda Thero had filed fundamental rights petitions against the proposed MCC agreement to be signed between Sri Lanka and the MCC.

The United States hopes the MCC development assistance grant for Sri Lanka will be signed after the 16 November election.

With presidential elections approaching, the United States anticipates working toward grant signing and parliamentary approval with the Government of Sri Lanka after November 16, 2019, the US Embassy in Colombo said last week.

Per US policy – applied in all 29 partner countries – the Sri Lankan Parliament will have the opportunity to review and approve the grant. The United States says it looks forward to continuing its partnership with Sri Lanka and to supporting its efforts to reduce poverty through economic growth.

The United States welcomed the decision of the Cabinet of Ministers to approve the $480 million MCC development assistance grant. Sri Lanka requested the support, which is expected to benefit at least 11 million Sri Lankans through the funding of government- and private sector- identified needs.