sources close to government indicated that a new draught Bill of the Government’s proposed 22nd Amendment to the Constitution will be discussed at the Cabinet meeting tomorrow (1 August).
The Justice Ministry sent the new draught Bill to the Cabinet Secretary last week, asking that it be included on the agenda of Monday’s Cabinet meeting for discussion and decision.
Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, Justice Minister opined that the new draught 22nd Amendment would be gazetted after the Cabinet approved it and presented to Parliament seven days later.
According to minister, the new draught Bill will reflect the 19th Amendment to the Constitution and will go even further.
He explained that the new draught Bill included more features that empowered Parliament as well as anti-bribery and anti-corruption mechanisms. “As a result, it is a 19th Amendment Plus scenario,” the Minister noted.
Following the prorogation of Parliament until Wednesday (3 August) last week, the draught Bill of the 22nd Amendment that had previously been presented to Parliament was terminated.
Former President Rajapaksa requested that certain powers vested in the Executive Presidency be retained during the tenure of the current Parliament in the previous 22nd Amendment draught Bill.
The provisos requested clauses were on the President’s power to appoint Cabinet members and ministry secretaries, the holding of Cabinet portfolios, and the President’s power to remove a prime minister.