Impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake - Recalling the Debate

by - Research Team posted over 9 years ago in විශ්ලේෂණ


In light of the events in Hulftsdorp today (28 January), there is much debate about the impeachment and reinstatement of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake. We will not examine the legal arguments here, but rather seek to provide access to the relevant debate in Parliament. We have also highlighted a few examples of MP contributions, drawing particular attention to the fact that the grounds for reinstatement of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake on 28 January 2015 were brought to light in Parliament on 11 January 2013. 


The relevant Hansard can be viewed here. The debate in question, pertaining to the ill-worded motion, can be read starting on p.635 (PDF p.69) from the point at which Hon. Minister Lakshman Kiriella (then a member of the opposition) raises the initial point of order on the issue.


In the debate that ensued, there were various contributions by MPs, with arguments being made for and against the motion. These touched on whether there was a need to appoint a second Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) if the motion were to pass, thereby precluding a valid address to the President based on the initial PSCs findings. This debate, despite not garnering sufficient press coverage at the time, has been placed in the centre stage after the reinstatement of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake.   


Four examples from the parliamentary debate on 11th January 2013, as transcribed in the Hansard are highlighted below:


Arguments against the motion:


Lakshman Kiriella (Hansard p. 637/PDF p. 70), (Hansard p.635/PDF p.69)




M.A Sumanthiran (Hansard p. 648/PDF p.75)


Arguments for the motion:


Faiszer Musthapha (Hansard p. 638/PDF p.70)

A.H.M. Azwer (Hansard p. 638-639/PDF p. 70-71)


Read the Hansard debate in full here [p.635 (PDF p.69) onwards]


Useful Links

- A summary of events relating to the ill-worded motion [refer paras titled (i) Initial Deadlock (ii) Procedural Flaws] can be found here [Daily FT]


- A legal background to the wider issues surrounding the impeachment can be found here []


Similar to the excerpts highlighted above, allows for cross-referencing of MP parliamentary contributions, by using each MPs "Activities" Tracker (click here for an example) in conjunction with the Hansard Archive (click here) to provide a verbatim account of each MPs parliamentary main chamber performance. Any queries on older data (dating back to May 2012) can be addressed to [email protected]


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