SC to inform Speaker on verdict of petition hearing against REDC

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The Supreme Court has concluded hearing the two petitions filed against the Ruhunu Economic Development Corporation (REDC) of Sri Lanka Bill by Joint Opposition MP Bandula Gunawardena and Attorney-at-Law Premnath C. Dolawatte from Sathya Gaveshakayo (Truth Seekers) organization.

The two petitions had sought the Supreme Court to deliver an order declaring the Bill, which was recently tabled in the Parliament, is against the Constitution.

The Supreme Court ruled that the final decision on the petition hearing would be informed to the Speaker of Parliament Karu Jayasuriya.

The petitions were taken up before the Supreme Court judge bench consisting of Justices Prasanna Jayewardene, Murdu Fernando and Preethi Padman Surasena today (30).

The petitioners allege that certain Articles of the proposed Ruhunu Economic Development Corporation Bill illegally seize the authority vested with the provincial councils under the Constitution.

In addition to this, the REDC Bill has also proposed arbitrary powers to acquire religious places, lands with archaeological value as well as agricultural lands in the Southern Province, they have further alleged through their petitions.

They have accordingly sought the Supreme Court to deliver an order calling for a two-thirds majority in the Parliament and a referendum to pass the proposed REDC Bill as several of its Articles are against the Constitution.