Removal of Shirani was void from the beginning- Saliya Pieris
January 28, 2015 04:47 pm
Explaining the Constitutional background of the reappointment of Chief Justice 43rd, Senior Counsel Saliya Pieris told Ada Derana that Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake was impeached by the former Government without a request from the Parliament.
He added “the motion passed in Parliament in Jan 2013 did not contain an address for removal which is a mandatory requirement as per the Constitution. The motion merely reproduced the earlier resolution seeking to appoint a select committee to inquire.
This lapse was never rectified, even though an objection was raised in the House. Never was there an address seeking removal sent to the former President.
So the removal of Dr. Bandaranayake as CJ 43 was void from the beginning as the President cannot remove a Judge without such an address seeking removal.
Since the removal is void there was no vacancy to fill. Hence the purported appointment of Mohan Peiris is void from the beginning. Today the President having reviewed everything has decided to reverse this illegality and informed Pieris of the same and at the same time he has invited Dr. Bandaranayake to resume duties as CJ.
Accordingly Dr. Bandaranayake resumed duties as Chief Justice in her Chambers. In the eyes of the law Peiris was only de facto CJ and not the CJ in law. This is the position taken by the BASL all along. As for his orders and judgments they continue to be valid in terms of Article 119(2) of the Constitution.”
Saliya Peiris, with President’s Counsel Romesh De Silva were appeared on behalf of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake at the Parliamentary Select Committee proceedings and the case filed at the Court of Appeal earlier.