Jul 03, 2019

Govt. proposal to abolish death penalty! Featured

The government is said to have decided to present a proposal for the cancellation of the decision to reinstate the death penalty to parliament and take a vote on it, it is reported.

The government party is expected to present it as a private member’s bill.

This proposal is expected to be presented to parliament as most of the MPs are against the reinstatement of the death sentence.

Opposition from the Maithri faction too

Meanwhile, there is opposition for the reinstatement of the death sentence from the Maithri faction as well.

In a statement, the Human Rights Council had stated that the Presidential powers which allows him to decide on implementing the death penalty should also be abolished.

The Acting Executive Director of the HRC Surangi Ariyawansa stated that the powers vested with the President to reinstate the death sentence is extremely dangerous.

Parliament has the power to abolish the death sentence- Surangi

She has stated this during a workshop held with the volunteer human rights activists at the CHR office in Rajagiriya on June 30th.

Ariyawansa pointed out that the legislature has the jurisdiction to limit the powers of the Executive to implement the death penalty. This power vested with the Executive can be revoked by the majority consent of the Parliament.

Sri Lanka has been internationally acknowledged for not enforcing capital punishment since 1976 and Sri Lanka has already voted in favour of a resolution brought forth by the United Nations in 2016, the release further said.

This position was earlier held by the current Southern Province Governor, Keerthi Tennakoon but the position is yet to be filled and Surangi has been serving as its Acting Executive Director.

Petition against the reinstatement of the death sentence

Meanwhile, the petition filed by senior journalist Malinda Seneviratne against the decision taken by the President to reinstate the death sentence was determined that the Court of Appeal has no jurisdiction to hear this petition since it was challenging a decision taken by the President to implement the death penalty.

The petition was fixed for further submissions to be taken up for today (03).

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