September was a busy month for the Sri Lankan Parliament with the month’s highlight being the enactment of the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution with a whopping two thirds majority in the House.
For weeks, the moral validity of the said amendment was debated with strong opposition being lodged by some for the proposed removal of the restriction on the number of terms one may service as Executive President. On September 8, Parliament passed the said amendment with 161 votes in favour with just 17 members voting against.
The amendment, presented as an ‘urgent bill,’ provided its detractors only 72 hours to oppose the bill’s constitutionality by petitioning the Supreme Court, a constitutional provision that largely removes the possibility of a robust debate on any proposed legislations as an urgent bill and reduces the opportunity to study a bill in order to oppose the constitutionality of the same, if required.
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