Sri Lanka’s prime minister is appealing a court decision that temporarily bars him and his cabinet from carrying out official duties, amid a constitutional crisis that has left the island nation without effective leadership.
The ruling by Sri Lanka’s Court of Appeals on Monday comes after Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa refused to step down despite losing two no-confidence votes last month.
Rajapaksa said he will take his appeal to the Supreme Court on Tuesday and seek an order halting the decision. “We do not agree with the decision given by the Appeals Court as Constitutional matters are finally decided by the Supreme Court,” Rajapaksa said on Twitter.
Judge Arjuna Obeyesekere said in his ruling that if Rajapaksa and his cabinet continued to hold office, it would cause “irreparable” damage. “Such damage would also have far reaching consequences to the whole country,” Obeyesekere said.
Even though the decision would leave the nation without a functioning government, “allowing a set of persons who are not entitled in law to function as the prime minister or the cabinet of ministers or any other minister of government,” would do far greater harm, he added. Read more