Speaker signs 19th amendment to constitution
May 15, 2015 10:15 am
Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa has put his signature validating the 19th Amendment to the Constitution which was passed in Parliament with an overwhelming majority on April 28.
The Speaker signed the blueprint of the constitutional amendment at around 9.00am this morning, the Secretary General of Parliament Dhammika Dasanayake said.
The legislation, which envisages the dilution of many powers of Executive Presidency, which had been in force since 1978, will come into force from today.
On April 28, the Parliament cleared the Bill with 212 members voting in favour of the legislation. Ten members were absent. While one voted against the Bill, another member abstained from the voting.
Among the important features of the Bill are: the reduction in the terms of President and Parliament from six years to five years; re-introduction of a two-term limit that a person can have as President; the power of President to dissolve Parliament only after four and a half years [unlike one year, as prevalent now]; the revival of Constitutional Council and the establishment of independent commissions.