Minister Rauf Hakeem has urged that the Standing Orders relating to the appointment of Chief Justice must be revised to avoid chaos in future.
Speaking in the Parliament on the CJ issue, Hakeem stated that he was the Justice Minister when Mohan Peiris was holding the position of the Chief Justice. Therefore he was bound to make a speech that would not contradict the collective responsibility. When he was in the previous Cabinet, he could work closely with Leftist leaders like D.E.W. Gunasekara and Vasudeva Nanayakkara. They knew his candid opinion on that matter and he too was aware of their positions in that regard.
He added that there was no vacancy to appoint Mohan Peiris as the Chief Justice. The Executive is the appointing authority of the Chief Justice. Now it is time for us to revisit the Latimer House principles. As the Chair to the Commonwealth Heads of Government, the President is bound to follow the Latimer House principles. The vacancy for the post of the Chief Justice only occurred with the retirement of Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake.
He stressed that the revision of Standing Orders is necessary to ensure that this type of chaos does not happen in the future. There was no address to the President in the letter sent to him asking to remove Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake. Therefore, all that happened subsequently becomes null and void.