First parliamentary sitting for 2021 begins today


The first sitting of the ninth parliament for the year 2021 has been scheduled for this morning (January 05).

Secretary-General of Parliament Dhammika Dassanayake said all necessary arrangements have been made to begin the parliamentary sittings.

As decided during the meeting of the Committee on Parliamentary Business, chaired by Deputy Chairperson of Committees Angajan Ramanathan, the parliament will convene until January 08.

It was also decided to allow media persons to enter the parliament for media coverage from today, subject to healthcare procedures provided by the health sector to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Four Bills including Amendments to the Shop and Office Employees Act are expected to be debated today.

Three Bills including the Amendments to the Minimum Wages Act have been scheduled for tomorrow (January 06).

In addition, second reading of the Intellectual Property (Amendment) Bill and 10 regulations including airport taxes are scheduled for Thursday (January 07).

Secretary-General further stated that time has been allotted to direct questions to the Prime Minister tomorrow, between 10.00 am and 10.0 am.

The parliament will accordingly convene between 10.00 am and 4.30 pm from until Thursday. However, on Friday (January 08), the parliament is set to convene between 9.30 am and 4.30 pm.

Debate on the Adjournment Motion moved by the Government will be held today and on Thursday from 4.30 pm to 5.30 pm.

Debate on the Adjournment Motion moved by the Opposition is meanwhile scheduled for tomorrow.

Questions for oral answers will be taken up on Friday from 9.30 am to 10.30 am.

In the meantime, Venerable Athuraliye Rathana Thero will take oaths as a member of the 9th parliament at the commencement of today’s session.

Rathana Thero was appointed by the ‘Ape Jana Bala Pakshaya’, also known as Our Power of People Party (OPPP), to fill its National List parliamentary seat. The relevant gazette notification, issued by the Commissioner-General of Elections, was later published by the Department of Government Printing.

Accordingly, the former parliamentarian will once again serve a Member of Parliament under Article 99A of the Constitution.