Experts committee appointed to draft new Constitution

An experts committee has been appointed to draft a new Constitution, the Government announced today.

Cabinet co-spokesman Udaya Gammanpila said that President’s Counsel Romesh de Silva has been appointed as the head of the committee.

Gammanpila told reporters today the decision to appoint the committee was taken by the cabinet at its meeting yesterday.

As a short-term measure to address the anomalies and shortcomings caused by the 19th Amendment to the Constitution in 2015, the Cabinet of Ministers decided on 19.08.2020 to advise the Legal Draftsman to draft the 20th Amendment to the Constitution.

The Bill prepared accordingly by the Legal Draftsman was presented to the Cabinet by the Minister of Justice. The Cabinet drew attention to the opinion given by the Attorney General that the Bill was not incompatible with the 13th Amendment to the Constitution and that it could be passed by a vote of not less than 2/3 of the Parliament in terms of Article 82 (5) of the Constitution.

Accordingly, approval of the Cabinet of Ministers was granted to publish the Bill in the Government Gazette and then to table in Parliament for approval.

Taking into consideration the proposal made by the Minister of Justice as decided by the Cabinet on 19.08.2020, the Cabinet of Ministers decided to appoint the following expert committee to prepare the preliminary draft for a new Constitution.

The committee headed by President’s Counsel Romesh de Silva includes Gamini Marapana, President’s Counsel, Manohara De Silva, President’s Counsel, Sanjeewa Jayawardena, President’s Counsel Prof. Nazeema Kamurdin, Dr. A .Sarveswaran, Samantha Rathwatte, President’s Counsel, Prof. Wasantha Senevirathne and Prof.G.H. Peiris. (Colombo Gazette)