A writ petition filed seeking an order declaring State Minister of Tourism Diana Gamage is disqualified to be a Member of Parliament since she is a British citizen was today reserved for judgment by the Court of Appeal.
Court of Appeal two-judge-bench comprising Justice (President) Nissanka Bandula Karunaratne and Justice M.A.R. Marikkar announced that the judgment regarding this petition would be delivered on June 6.
The parties were directed to file their written submissions before May.18.
Social activist Oshala Herath filed this petition seeking an order in the nature of a Writ of Quo Warranto declaring that Diana Gamage is disqualified to be a Member of Parliament and is thus not entitled to hold office as an MP.
Counsel Hafeel Farisz appearing for the petitioner submitted to the court that the conduct of the Attorney General in this petition was despicable. He told the court that the statements of Diana Gamage herself and the statements of officers of the Department of Immigration and Emigration including the former Controller General had clearly said that Diana Gamage was a British citizen. He asked how could the Attorney General now say that they were not sure as to her citizenship.
In this case, the petitioner claimed that State Minister Diana Gamage is a British citizen and only a British citizen can hold a British Passport. The petitioner maintained that by virtue of becoming a citizen of another country, Parliamentarian Diana Gamage ceased to be a Sri Lankan citizen. The petitioner said Diana Gamage has not obtained dual citizenship or any other form of citizenship in Sri Lanka.
The petitioner further said Diana Gamage is disqualified from election as an MP or to sit and vote in Parliament under and in terms of Article 91 read with Article 89 and Article 90 of the Constitution of Sri Lanka.
Counsel Hafeel Farisz with Nishika Fonseka appeares for the petitioner. President's Counsel Shavindra Fernando appeared for Diana Gamage. Presidents Counsel Farman Cassim appeared for Ranjith Madduma Bandara of the Samagi Jana Balawegaya. Senior State Counsel Suranga Wimalasena appeared for the Attorney General. (Lakmal Sooriyagoda)
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