The newly appointed Constitutional Council met for the first time yesterday.
The meeting was held at 10.00 a.m. at the Speaker’s official gallery. and chaired by Speaker Chamal Rajapaske.
Speaker Rajapaksa, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Oppos-ition Leader Nimal Siripala De Silva attended as the Council’s ex-officio members, while the MPs Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, John Seneviratne and R. Sampanthan participated as the nominees of the UNP, SLFP and minor parties respectively.
The Prime Minister emphasised the importance of studying the conduct of the previous Constitutional Council established under the 17th Amendment in order to make the new council more efficient. Wickremesinghe also stated that in order to ensure the speedy establishment of the independent commissions, the Constitutional Council should study the process to call for applications for members of the commissions and what those applications should contain.
The council decided to appoint Secretary General of Parliament, Dhammika Dassanayake, as the temporary general secretary to the council, the Speaker’s office said in a media release.
The council also decided to seek the advice of the attorney general concerning the appointment of three civil society representatives to the Constitutional Council. Since the constitutional requirement is for the Constitutional Council to meet twice every month, the next meeting will be held on 9 July at 10.00 a.m. in the Speaker’s official gallery, the media release said.