Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) has reportedly informed the President during a discussion held today (Oct 19) that It cannot support the proposed 22nd Constitutional Amendment Bill which is scheduled to be debated in parliament tomorrow (Oct 20).
However, the president has requested to vote in favor of the 22nd amendment in the second reading vote and to present any amendments during the committee stage.
The 22nd Constitutional Amendment Bill is scheduled to be taken up for debate in the House tomorrow (Oct 20) and the day after (Oct 21).
A discussion in this regard was held today between the MPs of the SLPP as the majority representation of the government, President Ranil Wickremesinghe and former Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.
During the discussion, MP Sarath Weerasekera had pointed out that, he will oppose the 22nd Constitutional Amendment Bill as same as he opposed the 19th, sources said.
It is ridiculous that the MPs who supported the 19th and 20th Constitutional amendments are supporting the 22nd Constitutional amendment too, he had reportedly mentioned.
MP S.B. Dissanayake has also emphasized that he is also against weakening the power of the President.
Meanwhile, State Minister Prasanna Ranaweera has stated that it is necessary to hold a poll based on the 22nd Amendment.
According to sources, MP Sanjeewa Edirimanna has raised a question with the President that how will the challenges in relation to the formation of a collective executive other than the executive power under a single person be faced.
We remember how the members of the Independent Election Commission acted within the last period, he had added.
The General Secretary of SLPP, Sagara Kariyawasam has stressed that they are unable to support the 22nd Constitutional Amendment Bill due to certain aspects included in it, warning that if ten of the parliamentarians in SLPP move to the opposition as a result of the issues pertaining to 22nd Amendment, the budget vote may also be lost.
Nevertheless, the former PM Mahinda Rajapaksa has refrained from expressing his views regarding the 22nd Constitutional Amendment Bill, the source said.