A fundamental rights petition has been filed at the Supreme Court against the ‘suppression’ of the interim COPE report which reported on the controversial Central Bank bond issue.
The petition was filed by Dr. Nalin de Silva, Dean of the Faculty of Science, University of Kelaniya and a Professor in the Department of Mathematics and former President of the Federation of University Teachers’ Associations (FUTA).
The petition cited eight respondents including Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, DEW Gunasekera, Former Minister of Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms, Dhammika Dassanayake, Secretary General of Parliament, and Minister of Justice, Sujeewa Senasinghe.
In his petition, de Silva said that the Prime Minister had stated that the said document referred to by former Chairman of COPE was not approved by the other members of COPE and that any reference to it, therefore is a breach of parliamentary privilege.
The petitioner sought the Supreme Court to grant an interim order requiring the former Chairman of COPE to file an affidavit in Court, along with the Interim COPE report, declaring that it is a true copy of the Interim COPE report on the 30 year bond issue of the CBSL, along with a true copy of the said COPE Interim report.
In addition, the petition also sought the Court to grant interim relief declaring that all former members of the consultative Committee COPE on the 30 year bond issue, have a right to continue to speak to media and in public forums without any impediment by law or otherwise on any matter concerning COPE and the said bond issue, as it is their duty to uphold the Right to Information of citizens guaranteed in the Constitution, by doing so.
The petitioner also asked Court to grant interim relief by directing the former Chairman of COPE or the former Speaker of the House of Parliament, or the Secretary General of Parliament, to release the said COPE report, now ascertained by affidavit as true and correct, to the media.