President of Sri Lanka

The President, the Prime Minister, the Cabinet of Ministers, and Ministers, the Governors…

The Presidential Secretariat of Sri Lanka

This page enumerates the relevant Articles of the 1978 Republican Constitution which specify powers of the President, the political entities attached to or appointed by him and other related matters directly attributed to him. The Prime Minister, the Cabinet of Ministers, Deputy Ministers, non-Cabinet Ministers, the Governors, Administration of the State, the defense and security of the State, appointment of high-rank officers to independant and psudo-independant commissions and institutions mostly on recommention of the Constitutional Council or Parliament - all these are directly related to the President.

(i)

30.

(1) There shall be a President of the Republic of Sri Lanka, who is the Head of the State, the Head of the Executive and of the Government, and the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.

(2) The President of the Republic shall be elected by the People, and shall hold office for a term of six years.

(ii)

31.

(1) Any citizen who is qualified to be elected to the office of President may be nominated as a candidate for such office -

(a) by a recognized political party, or
(b) if he is or has been an elected member of the legislature, by any other political party or by an elector whose name has been entered in any register of electors.

(2) No person who has been twice elected to the office of President by the People shall be qualified thereafter to be elected to such office by the People.

(3) The poll for the election of the President shall be taken not less than one month and not more than two months before the expiration of the term of office of the President in office.

(3A).

(a).

(i) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in the preceding provisions of this Chapter, the President may, at any time after the expiration of four years from the commencement of his first term of office, by Proclamation, declare his intention of appealing to the People for a mandate to hold office, by election, for a further term.
(ii) Upon the making of a Proclamation under Subparagraph (i) the Election Commission shall be required to take a poll for the election of the President.

(b) If, at any time after the date of Proclamation referred to in paragraph (a) and before the close of the poll at the election held in pursuance of such Proclamation, the President in office dies, such Proclamation shall be deemed to have been revoked with effect from the date of such death and the election to be held in pursuance of such Proclamation shall be deemed to be cancelled. The vacancy in the office of President caused by such death shall be filled in accordance with the provisions of Article 40.

(c).

(i) If, at any time, between the close of the poll at an election held under this paragraph and the declaration of the result of such election, a candidate at such election dies, the Election Commission shall proceed with the count and declare the result of such election, notwithstanding the death of such candidate.
(ii) If the person entitled to be declared elected as President is dead at the time of the declaration of the result of such election, the Election Commission shall not declare the result of such election but shall take a fresh poll for the election of the President.
(iii) If by reason of the death referred to in sub-paragraph (i) there is a vacancy in the office of the President, the Prime Minister shall act in the office of President during the period between the occurrence of such vacancy and the assumption of office by the new President and shall appoint one of the other Ministers of the Cabinet to act in the office of Prime Minister.

(d) The person declared elected as President at an election held under this paragraph shall, if such person:

(i) is the President in office, hold office for a term of six years commencing on such date in the year in which that election is held (being a date after such election) or in the succeeding year, as corresponds to the date on which his first term of office commenced, whichever date is earlier; or
(ii) is not the President in office, hold office for a terms of six years commencing on the date on which the result of such election is declared.

(e) A person succeeding to the office of President under the provisions of Article 40 shall not be entitled to exercise the right conferred on a President by sub-paragraph (a) of this paragraph.

(f) For the purposes of this paragraph, the first term or office of the first President referred to in Article 160 shall be deemed to have commenced on February 4, 1978.

(4) Where a poll for the election of a President is taken, the term of office of the person elected as President at such election shall commence on the expiration of the term of office of the President in office.

(5) The election of the President shall be conducted by the Commissioner of Elections who shall fix the date for the nomination of candidates for such election and the date on which the poll shall be taken.

(6) Parliament shall by law make provision for -

(a) the nomination of candidates for the election of President;
(b) the register of electors to be used at and the procedure for the election of the President;
(c) the creation of offences relating to such election and the punishment therefor;
(d) the grounds and manner of avoiding such election and of determining any disputed election; and
(e) all other matters necessary or incidental thereto.

(iii)

32

(1) The person elected or succeeding to the office of President shall assume office upon taking and subscribing the oath or making and subscribing the affirmation, set out in the Fourth Schedule, in Sri Lanka before the Chief Justice or any other Judge of the Supreme Court.

(2) Upon such assumption of office, the President shall cease to hold any other office created or recognized by the Constitution and if he is a Member of Parliament, shall vacate his seat in Parliament. The President shall not hold any other office or place of profit whatsoever.

(3) The President shall, by virtue of his office, have the right at any time to attend, address and send messages to Parliament. In the exercise of such right, the President shall be entitled to all the privileges, immunities, and powers, other than the right to vote, of a Member of Parliament and shall not be liable for any breach of the privileges of Parliament, or of its Members.

(iv)

33. In addition to the powers and functions expressly conferred on or assigned to him by the Constitution or by any written law whether enacted before or after the commencement of the Constitution, the President shall have the power -

(a) to make the Statement of Government Policy in Parliament at the commencement of each session of Parliament;

(b) to preside at ceremonial sittings of Parliament;

(c) to receive and recognize, and to appoint and accredit Ambassadors, High Commissioners, Plenipotentiaries and other diplomatic agents;

(cc) to appoint as presidents Counsel attorneys-at-law who have reached eminence in the profession and have maintained high standards of conduct and professional rectitude. Every Presidents Counsel appointed under this paragraph shall be entitled to all such privileges as were hitherto enjoyed by a Queens Counsel;

(d) to keep the Public Seal of the Republic, and to make and execute under the Public Seal the Acts of Appointment of the Prime Minister and other Ministers of the Cabinet of Ministers, the Chief Justice and other Judges of the Supreme Court, such grants and dispositions of lands and immovable property vested in the Republic as he is by law required or empowered to do, and to use the Public Seal for sealing all things whatsoever that shall pass that Seal;

(e) to declare war and peace; and

(f) to do all such acts and things, not being inconsistent with the provisions of the Constitution or written law, as by international law, custom or usage he is required or authorized to do.

(v)

34.

(1) The President may in the case of any offender convicted of any offence in any court within the Republic of Sri Lanka -

(a) grant a pardon, either free or subject to lawful conditions;
(b) grant any respite, either indefinite or for such period as the President may think fit, of the execution of any sentence passed on such offender;
(c) substitute a less severe form of punishment for any punishment imposed on such offender; or
(d) remit the whole or any part of any punishment imposed or of any penalty or forfeiture otherwise due to the Republic on account of such offence;

(2) The President may in the case of any person who is or has become subject to any disqualification specified in paragraph (d), (e), (f), (g), or (h) of Article 89 or sub-paragraph (g) of paragraph (1) of Article 91 -

(a) grant a pardon, either free or subject to lawful conditions, or
(b) reduce the period of such disqualification.

(3) When any offence has been committed for which the offender may be tried within the Republic of Sri Lanka, the President may grant a pardon to any accomplice in such offence who shall give such information as shall lead to the conviction of the principal offender or of any one of such principal offenders, if more than one.

(vi)

35.

(1) While any person holds office as President, no proceedings shall be instituted or continued against him in any court or tribunal in respect of anything done or omitted to be done by him either in his official or private capacity.

(2) Where provision is made by law limiting the time within which proceedings of any description may be brought against any person, the period of time during which such person holds the office of President shall not be taken into account in calculating any period of time prescribed by that law.

(3) The immunity conferred by the provisions of paragraph (1) of this Article shall not apply to any proceedings in any court in relation to the exercise of any power pertaining to any subject or function assigned to the President or remaining in his charge under paragraph (2) of Article 44 or to proceedings in the Supreme Court under paragraph (2) of Article 129 or to proceedings in the Supreme Court under 130 (a) relating to the election of the President or the validity of a referendum of to proceedings in the Court of Appeal under Article 144 or in the Supreme Court, relating to the election of a Member of Parliament.

(vii)

36.

(1) Within one month of the commencement of the Constitution, Parliament shall by resolution determine the salary, allowances and pension entitlement of the holders of the office of President. Such pension shall be in addition to any other pension to which such person is entitled by virtue of any prior service.

(2) Upon the assumption of the office of President, the holder of such office shall become entitled to the receipt of such salary and allowances and thereafter, of such pension as may be determined by Parliament. Any subsequent amendment, repeal or replacement of this Article, and any subsequent law or any provision thereof inconsistent with shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund.

(3) The salary, allowances and pension of the President shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund.

(4) Parliament may by resolution increase, but shall not reduce, the salary, allowances or pension entitlement of the holders of the office of President.

(viii)

37.

(1) If the President is of the opinion that by reason of illness, absence from Sri Lanka or any other cause he will be unable to exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of his office, he may appoint the Prime Minister to exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of the office of President during such period, and may also appoint one of the other Ministers of the Cabinet to act in the office of Prime Minister during such period.

(2) If the Chief Justice in consultation with the Speaker is of the opinion that the President is temporarily unable to exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of his office and is unable to make an appointment in terms of paragraph (1) of this Article, he shall communicate in writing his opinion to the Speaker and thereupon the Prime Minister shall exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of the office of President during such period, and shall appoint one of the Ministers of the Cabinet to act in the office of Prime Minister during such period, notwithstanding the absence of such appointment as is provided for in paragraph (1) of this Article.

(3) The provisions of the Constitution relating to the President (other than the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 32) shall apply, in so far as they can be applied, to the person so exercising, performing and discharging the powers, duties and functions of the office of President.

(4) In this Article and in Articles 38(1)(b) and 40(1), "the Speaker" includes, during any period when Parliament is dissolved, the person who held the office of Speaker immediately before the dissolution of Parliament.

(ix)

38.

(1) The office of President shall become vacant -

(a) upon his death;
(b) if he resigns his office by a writing under his hand addressed to the Speaker;
(c) if he ceases to be a citizen of Sri Lanka;
(d) if the person elected as President willfully fails to assume office within two weeks from the date of commencement of his term of office;
(e) if he is removed from office as provided in the next succeeding paragraph; or
(f) if the Supreme Court in the exercise of its powers under Article 130(a) determines that his election as President was void and does not determine that any other person was duly elected as President.

(2)

(a) Any Member of Parliament may, by a writing addressed to the Speaker, give notice of a resolution alleging that the President is permanently incapable of discharging the functions of his office by reason of mental or physical infirmity or that the President has been guilty of -

(i) intentional violation of the Constitution,
(ii) treason,
(iii) bribery,
(iv) misconduct or corruption involving the abuse of the powers of his office, or
(v) any offence under any law, involving moral turpitude, and setting out full particulars of the allegation or allegations made and seeking an inquiry and report thereon by the Supreme Court.

(b) No notice of such resolution shall be entertained by the Speaker or placed on the Order Paper of Parliament unless it complies with the provisions of sub-paragraph (a) and -

(i) such notice of resolution is signed by not less than two-thirds of the whole number of Members of Parliament, or
(ii) such notice of resolution is signed by not less than one-half of the whole number of Members of Parliament, and the Speaker is satisfied that such allegation or allegations merit inquiry and report by the Supreme Court.

(c) Where such resolution is passed by not less than two-thirds of the whole number of Members (including those not present) voting in its favour, the allegation or allegations contained in such resolution shall be referred by the Speaker to the Supreme Court for inquiry and report.

(d) The Supreme Court shall, after due inquiry at which the President shall have the right to appear and to be heard, in person or by an attorney-at-law, make a report of its determination to Parliament together with the reasons therefor.

(e) Where the Supreme Court reports to Parliament that in its opinion the President is permanently incapable of discharging the functions of his office by reason of mental or physical infirmity or that the President has been guilty of any of the other allegations contained in such resolution, as the case may be, Parliament may by a resolution passed by not less than two-thirds of the whole number of Members (including those not present) voting in its favour remove the President from office.

(x)

39.

(1) Where the Supreme Court in the exercise of its jurisdiction under Article 130 determines -

(a) that the election of the President was void and does not determine that any other person was duly elected, then, a poll for the election of the President shall be taken not later than three months from the date of the determination; or
(b) that any other person was duly elected as President, then, such other person shall assume the office of President within one month of the date of the determination.

(2) Upon the Supreme Court making any such determination as is referred to in paragraph (1) of this Article, the person who was exercising, performing and discharging the powers, duties and functions of the office of President shall forthwith cease to exercise, perform and discharge such powers, duties and functions. During the period intervening between the date of such determination and the assumption of office by the new President, the Prime Minister shall act in the office of President and shall appoint one of the other Ministers of the Cabinet to act in the office of the Prime Minister.

(3) For the purposes of Article 30(2) and notwithstanding the provisions of Article 31(4), the term of office of the new President shall be deemed to have commenced on the date on which the term of office of the person whose election was determined to have been void or undue would, but for such determination, have commenced.

(4) The exercise, performance and discharge by any person of the powers, duties and functions of the office of President shall not be invalid by reason only of the fact that the Supreme Court subsequently determines that the election of such person as President was void or undue.

(5) The provisions of this Article shall apply notwithstanding anything to the contrary in Article 40.

(xi)

40.

(1)

(a) If the office of President shall become vacant prior to the expiration of his term of office, Parliament shall elect as President one of its Members who is qualified to be elected to the office of President. Any person so succeeding to the office of President shall hold office only for the unexpired period of the term of office of the President vacating office.
(b) Such election shall be held as soon as possible after, and in no case later than one month from, the date of occurrence of the vacancy. Such election shall be by secret ballot and by an absolute majority of the votes cast in accordance with such procedure as Parliament may by law provide.
(c) During the period between the occurrence of such vacancy and the assumption of office by the new President, the Prime Minister shall act in the office of President and shall appoint one of the other Ministers of the Cabinet to act in the office of Prime Minister.

(2) The provisions of the Constitution relating to the President (other than the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 32) shall apply, in so far as they can be applied, to an acting President.

(3) Parliament shall by law provide for all matters relating to the procedure for the election of the President by Parliament and all other matters necessary or incidental thereto.

(xii)

41.

(1) The President shall have the power to appoint such Secretaries, and, in consultation with the Cabinet of Ministers, such other officers and staff as are in his opinion necessary to assist him in the exercise, performance and discharge of the powers, duties and functions of his office, and to determine their terms and conditions of service.

(2) The salaries of such Secretaries, officers and staff shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund.

(3) Such Secretaries, officers and staff shall be deemed to be public officers except that the dismissal and disciplinary control of such Secretaries, officers and staff shall be vested in the President, who may delegate to any such Secretary his powers of dismissal and disciplinary control in respect of any such officers or staff.

(4) Every such Secretary, officer or member of the staff shall cease to hold office upon a new President assuming office.

(5) Where any such Secretary, officer or member of the staff so ceases to hold office, the Cabinet of Ministers may appoint such Secretary, officer or member of the staff to any post in the Public Service.

(6) The proviso to paragraph (5) of this Article shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to any person referred to in that proviso upon -

(a) the President terminating the services of such person, otherwise than by dismissal on disciplinary grounds; or
(b) the resignation of such person, unless disciplinary proceedings are pending or contemplated against such person on the date of his resignation.

(7) For the purposes of paragraphs (5) and (6) of this Article any person who has continuously held the office of Secretary to the President, Secretary to any Ministry or any office in the Presidents staff or any one or more of such, offices shall be deemed to have continuously held the office which such person last held.

(xiii)

42. The President shall be responsible to Parliament for the due exercise, performance and discharge of his powers, duties and functions under the Constitution and any written law, including the law for the time being relating to public security.

(xiv)

43.

(1) There shall be a Cabinet of Ministers charged with the direction and control of the Government of the Republic, which shall be collectively responsible and answerable to Parliament.

(2) The President shall be a member of the Cabinet of Ministers, and shall be the Head of the Cabinet of Ministers.

(3) The President shall appoint as Prime Minister the Member of Parliament who in his opinion is most likely to command the confidence of Parliament.

(xv)

44.

(1) The President shall, from time to time, in consultation with the Prime Minister, where he considers such consultation to be necessary -

(a) determine the number of Ministers of the Cabinet of Ministers and the Ministries and the assignment of subjects and functions to such Ministers; and
(b) appoint from among the Members of Parliament, Ministers to be in charge of the Ministries so determined.

(2) The President may assign to himself any subject or function and shall remain in charge of any subject or function not assigned to any Minister under the provisions of paragraph (1) of this Article or the provisions of paragraph (1) of Article 45, and may for that purpose determine the number of Ministries to be in his charge, and accordingly, any reference in the Constitution or any written law to the Minister to whom such subject or function is assigned, shall be read and construed as a reference to the President.

(3) The President may, at any time, change the assignment of subjects and functions and the composition of the Cabinet of Ministers. Such changes shall not affect the continuity of the Cabinet of Ministers, and the continuity of its responsibility to Parliament,

(xvi)

45.

(1) The President may, from time to time, in consultation with the Prime Minister where he considers such consultation to be necessary -

(a) appoint from among Members of Parliament, Ministers who shall not be Members of the Cabinet of Ministers; and
(b) determine the assignment of subjects and functions to, and the Ministries, if any, which are to be in charge of, such Ministers.

(2) The President may at any time change any appointment or assignment made under paragraph (1) of this Article.

(3) Every Minister appointed under this Article shall be responsible and answerable to the Cabinet of Ministers and to Parliament.

(4) Any Minister of the Cabinet of Ministers may, by Notification published in the Gazette, delegate to any Minister who is not a member of the Cabinet of Ministers any power or duty pertaining to any subject or function assigned to him, or any power or duty conferred or imposed on him by any written law and it shall be lawful for such other Minister to exercise and perform any power or duty delegated to him under this paragraph, notwithstanding anything to the contrary in the written law by which that power or duty is conferred or imposed.

(xvii)

46.

(1) The President may, from time to time, in consultation with the Prime Minister, where he considers such consultation to be necessary, appoint from among the Members of Parliament, Deputy Ministers to assist the Ministers of the Cabinet of Ministers in the performance of their duties.

(2) Any Minister of the Cabinet of Ministers may, by Notification published in the Gazette, delegate to his Deputy Minister any power or duty pertaining to any subject or function assigned to him, or any power or duty conferred or imposed on him by any written law and it shall be lawful for the Deputy Minister to exercise and perform any power or duty delegated to him under this paragraph notwithstanding anything to the contrary in the written law by which that power or duty is conferred or imposed on such Minister.

(xviii)

47. The Prime Minister, a Minister of the Cabinet of Ministers, any other Minister or Deputy Minister shall continue to hold office throughout the period during which the Cabinet of Ministers continues to function under the provisions of the Constitution unless he -

(a) is removed by a writing under the hand of the President;
(b) resigns his office by a writing under his hand addressed to the President; or
(c) ceases to be a Member of Parliament.

(xix)

48.

(1) The Cabinet of Ministers functioning immediately prior to the dissolution of Parliament shall notwithstanding such dissolution continue to function and shall cease to function upon the conclusion of the General Election, and accordingly, the Prime Minister, Ministers of the Cabinet of Ministers, other Ministers and Deputy Ministers shall continue to function unless they cease to hold office as provided in paragraph (a) or (b) of Article 47.

(2) Notwithstanding the death, removal from the office or resignation of the Prime Minister, during the period intervening between the dissolution of Parliament and the conclusion of the General Election, the Cabinet of Ministers shall continue to function with the other Ministers of the Cabinet as its members until the conclusion of the General Election. The President may appoint one such Minister to exercise, perform and discharge, or may himself exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of the Prime Minister. If there is no such other Minister the President shall himself exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of the Cabinet of Ministers until the conclusion of the General Election.

(3) On the death, removal from office or resignation, during the period intervening between the dissolution of Parliament and the conclusion of the General Election, of a Minister of the Cabinet of Ministers or any other Minister, the President may appoint any other Minister to be the Minister in charge of such Ministry or to exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of such Minister or may himself take charge of such Ministry or exercise, perform and discharge such powers, duties and functions.

(xx)

49.

(1) On the Prime Minister ceasing to hold office by removal, resignation or otherwise, except during the period intervening between the dissolution of Parliament and the conclusion of the General Election, the Cabinet of Ministers shall, unless the President has in the exercise of his powers under Article 70. dissolved Parliament, stand dissolved and the President shall appoint a Prime Minister, Ministers of the Cabinet of Ministers, other Ministers and Deputy Ministers in terms of Articles 43, 44, 45 and 46:

(2) If Parliament rejects the Statement of Government Policy or the Appropriation Bill or passes a vote of no-confidence in the Government, the Cabinet of Ministers shall stand dissolved, and the President shall, unless he has in the exercise of his powers under Article 70, to dissolve Parliament, appoint a Prime Minister, Ministers of the Cabinet of Ministers, other Ministers and Deputy Ministers in terms of Articles 43, 44, 45 and 46.

(xxi)

50. Whenever a Minister of the Cabinet of Ministers, other Minister or Deputy Minister is unable to discharge the functions of his office, the President may appoint any Member of Parliament to act in place of the said Minister of the Cabinet of Ministers, other Minister or Deputy Minister.

(xxii)

51. There shall be a Secretary to the Cabinet of Ministers who shall be appointed by the President. The Secretary shall, subject to the direction of the President, have charge of the office of the Cabinet of Ministers, and shall discharge and perform such other functions and duties as may be assigned to him by the President or the Cabinet of Ministers.

(xxiii)

52.

(1) There shall be for each Ministry a Secretary who shall be appointed by the President.

(2) The Secretary to the Ministry shall, subject to the direction and control of his Minister, exercise supervision over the departments of Government or other institutions in the charge of his Minister.

(3) The Secretary to a Ministry shall cease to hold office upon the dissolution of the Cabinet of Ministers under the provisions of the Constitution. or upon a determination by the President under Article 44 or Article 45 which results in such Ministry ceasing to exit.

(4) Where the Secretary to a Ministry so ceases to hold office, the Cabinet of Ministers may appoint such Secretary to any other post in the Public Service.

(5) The proviso to paragraph (4) of this Article shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to a Secretary to a Ministry upon -

(a) the President terminating his services, otherwise than by dismissal on disciplinary grounds, or
(b) his resignation, unless disciplinary proceedings are pending or contemplated against him on the date of his resignation.

(6) For the purposes of paragraphs (4) and (5) of this Article any person who has continuously held the office of Secretary to the President, Secretary to a Ministry or any other office in the Presidents staffer any one or more of such offices shall be deemed to have continuously held the office which such person last held.

(7) For the purposes of this Article -

(a) the Office of the Secretary-General of Parliament, the Office of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration (Ombudsman), the Constitutional Council, the Public Service Commission, the Elections Commission, the National Police Commission and Office of the Secretary to the Cabinet of Ministers; and
(b) the Department of the Auditor-General shall be deemed not to be departments of Government.

(xxiv)

53. A person appointed to any office referred to in this Chapter shall not enter upon the duties of his office until he takes and subscribes the oath or makes and subscribes the affirmation set out in the Fourth, Schedule.

(xxv)

61E. The President shall appoint

(a) the Heads of the Army, the Navy and the Air Force; and
(b) subject to the provisions of Article 41 C, the Attorney General and the Inspector-General of Police.

(xxvi)

70.

(1) The President may, from time to time, by Proclamation summon, prorogue on request by the majority of parliament, and dissolve on request by the majority of parliament, Parliament, and the president may, at any time after his election to the office of president and before twelve months elapse after such election, dissolve the parliament at his own wish.

(2) Parliament shall be summoned to meet once at least in every year.

(3) A Proclamation proroguing Parliament shall fix a date for the next session, not being more than two months after the date of the Proclamation.

(4) All matters which, having been duly brought before Parliament, have not been disposed of at the time of the prorogation of Parliament, may be proceeded with during the next session.

(5)

(a) A Proclamation dissolving Parliament shall fix a date or dates for the election of Members of Parliament, and shall summon the new Parliament to meet on a date not later than three months after the date of such Proclamation.
(b) Upon the dissolution of Parliament by virtue of the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 62, the President shall forthwith by Proclamation fix a date or dates for the election of Members of Parliament, and shall summon the new Parliament to meet on a date not later than three months after the date of such Proclamation.
(c) The date fixed for the first meeting of Parliament by a Proclamation under sub-paragraph (a) or sub-paragraph (b) may be varied by a subsequent Proclamation, provided that the date so fixed by the subsequent Proclamation shall be a date not later than three months after the date of the original Proclamation.

(6) Where the poll for the election of the President is to be taken on a date which falls between the date of dissolution of Parliament and the date before which Parliament is required by paragraph (5) of this Article to be summoned to meet, Parliament shall, notwithstanding anything in that paragraph, be summoned to meet on a date not later than four months after the date of dissolution of Parliament.

(7) If at any time after the dissolution of Parliament, the President is satisfied that an emergency has arisen of such a nature that an earlier meeting of Parliament is necessary, he may by Proclamation summon the Parliament which has been dissolved to meet on a date not less than three days from the date of such Proclamation and such Parliament shall stand dissolved upon the termination of the emergency or the conclusion of the General Election, whichever is earlier.

(xxvii)

85.

(1) The President shall submit to the People by Referendum every Bill or any by Referendum, provision in any Bill which the Cabinet of Ministers has certified as being intended to be submitted to the People by Referendum, or which the Supreme Court has determined as requiring the approval of the People at a Referendum if the number of votes cast in favour of such Bill amounts to not less than two-thirds of the whole number of Members (including those not present).

(2) The President may in his discretion submit to the People by Referendum any Bill (not being a Bill for the repeal or amendment of any provision of the Constitution, or for the addition of any provision to the Constitution, or for the repeal and replacement of the Constitution, or which is inconsistent with any provision of the Constitution), which has been rejected by Parliament.

(3) Any Bill or any provision in any Bill submitted to the People by Referendum shall be deemed to be approved by the People if approved by an absolute majority of the valid votes cast at such Referendum.

(xxviii)

86. The President may, subject to the provisions of Article 85, submit to the People by Referendum any matter which in the opinion of the President is of national importance.

(xxix)

92. Every person who is qualified to be an elector shall be qualified to be elected to the office of President unless he is subject to any of the following disqualifications-

(a) if he has not attained the age of thirty years;

(b) if he is not qualified to be elected as a Member of Parliament under sub-paragraph (d), (e), if) or (g) of paragraph (1) of Article 91;

(c) if he has been twice elected to the office of President by the People;

(d) if he has been removed from the office of President under the provisions of sub-paragraph (e) of paragraph (2) of Article 38.

(xxx)

94.

(1) At the election of the President every voter while casting his vote for any candidate may -

(a) where there are three candidates for election, specify his second preference; and
(b) where there are more than three candidates for election, specify his second and third preferences.

(2) The candidate, if any, who receives more than one-half of the valid votes cast shall be declared elected as President.

(3) Where no candidate is declared elected under paragraph (2) of this Article, the candidate or candidates, other than the candidates who received the highest and second highest number of such votes, shall be eliminated from the contest, and -

(a) the second preference of each voter whose vote had been for a candidate eliminated from the contest, shall, if it is for one or the other of the remaining two candidates, be counted as a vote for such candidate and be added to the votes counted in his favour under paragraph (2), and
(b) the third preference of each voter referred to in sub-paragraph (a) whose second preference is not counted under that sub-paragraph shall, if it is for one or the other of the remaining two candidates, be counted as a vote for such candidate and be added to the votes counted in his favour under sub-paragraph (a) and paragraph (2).

(4) Where an equality is found to exist between the votes received by two or more candidates and the addition of one vote would determine

(a) which candidate is to be declared elected under this Article ; or
(b) which candidate is not to be eliminated under this Article; Then the determination of the candidate to whom such additional vote shall be deemed to have been given for the purpose of such determination shall be made by lot.

(xxxi)

l07.

(1) The Chief Justice, the President of the Court of Appeal and every other judge of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal shall, subject to the provisions in Article 41C be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand.

(2) Every such Judge shall hold office during good behaviour, and shall not be removed except by an order of the President made after an address of Parliament, supported by a majority of the total number of Members of Parliament (including those not present) has been presented to the President for such removal on the ground of proved misbehavior or incapacity.

(3) Parliament shall by law or by Standing Orders provide for all matters relating to the presentation of such an address, including the procedure for the passing of such resolution, the investigation and proof of the alleged misbehavior or incapacity and the right of such Judge to appear and to be heard in person or by representative.

(4)Every person appointed to be or to act as Chief Justice, President of the Court of Appeal or a Judge of the Supreme Court or Court of Appeal shall not enter upon the duties of his office until he takes and subscribes or makes and subscribes before the President, the oath or the affirmation set out in the Fourth Schedule.

(5)The age of retirement of Judges of the Supreme Court shall be sixty-five years and of Judges of the Court of Appeal shall be sixty-three years.

(xxxii)

110.

(1) A Judge of the Supreme Court or Court of Appeal may be required by the President of the Republic to perform or discharge any other appropriate duties or functions under any written law.

(2) No Judge of the Supreme Court or Court of Appeal shall perform any other office (whether paid or not) or accept any place of profit or emolument, except as authorized by the Constitution or by written law or with the written consent of the President.

(3) No person who has held office as a permanent Judge of the Supreme Court or of the Court of Appeal may appear, plead, or practise in any court, tribunal or institution as an attorney-at-law at any time without the written consent of the President.

(xxxiii)

111.

(1) There shall be a High Court of Sri Lanka, which shall exercise such jurisdiction and powers as Parliament may by law vest or ordain.

(2) The Judges of the High Court shall:

(a) on the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission, be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and such recommendation shall be made after consultation with the Attorney-General;
(b) be removable and be subject to the disciplinary control of the President on the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission.

(3) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) of this Article, Parliament may by law provide for matters relating to the retirement of the Judges of such High Court.

(4) Any Judge of the High Court may resign his office by writing under his hand addressed to the President.

(xxxiv)

111A.

(1) Where the Minister in charge of the subject of Justice represents to the President that it is expedient that the number of Judges exercising the jurisdiction and powers of the High Court in any judicial zone should be temporarily increased, the President may, on the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission, by warrant, appoint one or more Commissioners of the High Court to exercise the jurisdiction and powers of the High Court within such judicial zone as is specified in the warrant of appointment of such Commissioner of the High Court.

(2) Every Commissioner of the High Court appointed under paragraph (1) shall hold office for the period specified in his warrant of appointment and shall be removable, and be subject to disciplinary control, by the President, on the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission.

(3) Every Commissioner of the High Court appointed under paragraph (1) may, during his tenure of office, exercise, according to law, such jurisdiction and powers as is, or are, vested or ordained in the High Court by Parliament, and shall be invested with all the rights, powers, privileges and immunities (except such rights and privileges as relate to tenure of office) of a Judge of the High Court, and for this purpose, a reference to a "Judge of the High Court" in the Constitution or other written law shall, unless the context otherwise requires, be deemed to include a reference to a "Commissioner of the High Court".

(xxxv)

122.

(1) In the case of a Bill which is, in the view of the Cabinet of Ministers, urgent in the national interest, and bears an endorsement to that effect under the hand of the Secretary to the Cabinet -

(a) the provisions of Article 78 (1) and of Article 121, shall subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) of this Article, have no application;
(b) the President shall by a written reference addressed to the Chief Justice, require the special determination of the Supreme Court as to whether the Bill or any provision thereof is inconsistent with the Constitution. A copy of such reference shall at the same time be delivered to the Speaker;
(c) the Supreme Court shall make its determination within twenty-four hours (or such longer period not exceeding three days as the President may specify) of the assembling of the Court, and shall communicate its determination only to the President and the Speaker.

(2) The provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 121 shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to such Bill.

(xxxvi)

129.

(1) If at any time it appears to the President of the Republic that a question of law or fact has arisen or is likely to arise which is of such nature and of such public importance that it is expedient to obtain the opinion of the Supreme Court upon it, he may refer that question to that Court for consideration and the Court may, after such hearing as it thinks fit, within the period specified in such reference or within such time as may be extended by the President, report to the President its opinion thereon.

(2) Where the Speaker refers to the Supreme Court for inquiry and report all or any of the allegation or allegations, as the case may be, contained in any such resolution as is referred to in Article 38 (2) (a), the Supreme Court shall in accordance with Article 38 (2) (d) inquire into such allegation or allegations and shall report its determination to the Speaker within two months of the date of reference.

(3) Such opinion, determination and report shall be expressed after consideration by at least five Judges of the Supreme Court, of whom, unless he otherwise directs, the Chief Justice shall be one.

(4) Every proceeding under paragraph (1)of this Article shall be held in private unless the Court for special reasons otherwise directs.

(xxxvii)

154B.

(1) There shall be a Governor for each Province for which a Provincial Council has been established in accordance with Article 154A.

(2) The Governor shall be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand, and shall hold office, in accordance with Article 4(b), during the pleasure of the President.

(3) The Governor may, by writing addressed to the President, resign his office.

(4)

(a) The Provincial Council may, subject to sub-paragraph (b), present an address to the President advising the removal of the Governor on the ground that the Governor

(i) has intentionally violated the provisions of the Constitution;
(ii) is guilty of misconduct or corruption involving the abuse of the powers of his office; or
(iii) is guilty of bribery or an offence involving moral turpitude.

(5) Subject to the preceding provisions of this Article, the Governor shall hold office for a period of five years from the date he assumes office.

(6) Every person appointed as Governor shall assume office upon taking or subscribing, the oath or making or subscribing the affirmation, set out in the Fourth Schedule, before the President.

(7) Upon such assumption of office a Governor shall cease to hold any other office created or recognized by the Constitution, and if he is a Member of Parliament, shall vacate his seat in Parliament. The Governor shall not hold any other office or place of profit.

(8)

(a) The Governor may, from time to time, summon the Provincial Council to meet at such time and place as he thinks fit, but two months shall not intervene between the last sitting in one session and the date appointed for the first sitting in the next session.
(b) The Governor may, from time to time, prorogue the Provincial Council.
(c) The Governor may dissolve the Provincial Council.
(d) The Governor shall exercise his powers under this paragraph in accordance with the advice of the Chief Minister, so long as the Board of Ministers commands, in the opinion of the Governor, the support of the majority of the Provincial Council.

(9) Without prejudice to the powers of the President under Article 34 and subject to his directions the Governor of a Province shall have the power to grant a pardon to every person convicted of an offence against a statute made by the Provincial Council of that Province or a law made by Parliament on a matter in respect of which the Provincial Council has power to make statutes and to grant a respite or remission of punishment imposed by Court on any such person.

(10)

(a) The Governor may address the Provincial Council and may for that purpose require the attendance of members.
(b) The Governor may also send messages to the Council either with respect to a statute then pending with the Council, or otherwise, and when a message is so sent the Council shall with all convenient dispatch consider any matter required by the message to be taken into consideration.

(11) It shall be the duty of the Chief Minister of every Province

(a) to communicate to the Governor of the Province all decisions of the Board of Ministers relating to the administration of the affairs of the Province and the proposals for legislation;
(b) to furnish such information relating to the administration of the affairs of the Province and proposals for legislation as the Governor may call for; and
(c) if the Governor so requires, to submit for consideration of the Board of Ministers any matter on which a decision has been taken by a Minister but which has not been considered by the Board.

(12) Parliament shall by law or resolution make provision for the salary, allowances, age of retirement and pension entitlement of holders of the office of Governor.

(xxxviii)

154C. Executive power extending to the matters with respect to which a Provincial Council has power to make statutes shall be exercised by the Governor of the Province of which that Provincial Council is established, either directly or through Ministers of the Board of Ministers, or through officers subordinate to him, in accordance with Article 154F.

(xxxix)

154F.

(1) There shall be a Board of Ministers with the Chief Minister at the head and not more than four other Ministers to aid and advice of the Governor of a province in the exercise of his functions. The Governor shall, in the exercise of his functions, act in accordance with such advice, except in so far as he is by or under the constitution required to exercise his functions or any of them in his discretion.
(2) If any question arises whether any matter is or is not a matter as respects which the Governor is by or under this Constitution required to act in his discretion, the decision of the Governor in his discretion shall be final, and the validity of anything done by the Governor shall not be called in question in any Court on the ground that he ought or ought not have acted on his discretion. The exercise of the Governors discretion shall be on the Presidents directions.
(3) The question whether any, and if so what, advice was tendered by the Ministers to the Governor shall not be inquired into any Court.
(4) The Governor shall appoint as Chief Minister, the member of the Provincial Council constituted for that Province, who, in his opinion, is best able to command the support of a majority of the members of that Council: his opinion, is best able to command the support of a majority of the members of that Council:
(5) The Governor shall, on the advice of the Chief Minister, appoint from among the members of the Provincial Council constituted for that Province, the other Ministers.
(6) The Board of Ministers shall be collectively responsible and answerable to the Provincial Council.
(7) A person appointed to the office of Chief Minister or member of the Board of Ministers shall not enter upon the duties of his office until he takes and subscribes his oath, or makes and subscribes the affirmation, set out in the Fourth Schedule.

(xL)

154H.

(1) Every statute made by a Provincial Council shall come into force upon such statute receiving assent as hereinafter provided.
(2) Every statute made by a Provincial Council shall be presented to the Governor for his assent, forthwith upon the making thereof, and the Governor shall either assent to the statute or he may as soon as possible after the statute is presented to him for assent return it to the Provincial Council together with a message requesting the Council to reconsider the statute or any specified provision thereof and in particular, requesting it to consider the desirability of introducing such amendments as may be recommended in the message.
(3) Where a statute is returned to a Provincial Council by the Governor under paragraph (2), the Provincial Council shall reconsider the statute having regard to the Governors message and may pass such statute with or without amendment and present it to the Governor for his assent.
(4) Upon presentation of a statute to the Governor under paragraph (3), the Governor may assent to the statute or reserve it for reference by the President to the Supreme Court, within one month of the passing of the statute for the second time, for determination that it is not inconsistent with the provisions of the Constitution. Whereupon such reference, the Supreme Court determines that the statute is consistent with the provisions of the Constitution, the Governor shall, on receipt by him of the Courts determination, assent to the statute. Whereupon such reference, the Supreme Court determines that the statute is inconsistent with the provisions of the Constitution, the Governor shall withhold assent to the statute.

(xLi)

154J.

(1) Upon the making of a Proclamation under the Public Security Ordinance or the law for the time being in force relating to public security, bringing the provisions of such Ordinance or law into operation on the ground that the maintenance of essential supplies and services is threatened or that the security of Sri Lanka is threatened by war or external aggression or armed rebellion, the President may give directions to any Governor as to the manner in which the executive power exercisable by the Governor is to be exercised. The directions so given shall be in relation to the grounds specified in such Proclamation for the making thereof.
(2) A Proclamation under the Public Security Ordinance or the law for the time being relating to public security, shall be conclusive for all purposes and shall not be questioned in any Court, and no Court or Tribunal shall inquire into, or pronounce on, or in any manner call in question, such Proclamation, grounds for the making thereof, or the existence of those grounds or any direction given under this Article.

(xLii)

154K. Where the Governor or any Provincial Council has failed to comply with, or give effect to, any directions given to such Governor or such Council under this Chapter of the Constitution, it shall be lawful for the President to hold that a situation has arisen in which the administration of the Province cannot be carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.

(xLiii)

154L.

(1) If the President, on receipt of a report from the Governor of the Province or otherwise, is satisfied that a situation has arisen in which the administration of the Province cannot be carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution, the President may by Proclamation

(a) assume to himself all or any of the functions of the administration of the Province and all or any of the powers vested in, or exercisable by, the Governor or any body or authority in the Province other than the Provincial Council;
(b) declare that the powers of the Provincial Council shall be exercisable by, or under the authority of Parliament;
(c) make such incidental and consequential provisions as appear to the President to be necessary or desirable for giving effect to the objects of the Proclamation:


(2) Any such Proclamation may be revoked or varied by a subsequent Proclamation.
(3) Every Proclamation under this Article shall be laid before Parliament and shall, except where it is a Proclamation revoking a previous Proclamation, cease to operate at the expiration of fourteen days unless before the expiration of that period it has been approved by a resolution of Parliament.
(4) A Proclamation so approved shall, unless earlier revoked, cease to operate on the expiration of a period of two months from the date of issue of the Proclamation.
(5) Notwithstanding anything in this Article, the President may within fourteen days of his making a Proclamation under paragraph (I) and for the purpose of satisfying himself with regard to any of the matters referred to in that paragraph, appoint a retired Judge of the Supreme Court to inquire into and report upon such matters within a period of sixty days. A Judge so appointed shall in relation to such inquiry have the powers of a Commissioner appointed under the Commissions of Inquiry Act. Upon receipt of the report of such Judge, the President may revoke the Proclamation made under paragraph (1).
(6) A Proclamation under this Article shall be conclusive for all purposes and shall not be questioned in any Court, and no Court or Tribunal shall inquire into, or pronounce on, or in any manner call in question, such Proclamation or the grounds for making thereof.

(xLiv)

154M.

(1) Where by a Proclamation issued under paragraph (I) of Article 154L, it has been declared that the powers of the Provincial Council shall be exercisable by, or under the authority, of Parliament, it shall be competent

(a) for Parliament to confer on the President the power of the Provincial Council to make statutes and to authorize the President to delegate, subject to such conditions as he may think fit to impose, the power so conferred, on any other authority specified by him in that behalf;
(b) for the President to authorize, when Parliament is not in session, expenditure from the Provincial Fund of the Province pending sanction of such expenditure by Parliament.


(2) A statute made by Parliament or the President or other authority referred to in sub-paragraph (a) of paragraph (1), during the continuance in force of a Proclamation issued under paragraph (I) of Article l54L, shall continue in force until amended or repealed by the Provincial Council.

(xLv)

154N.

(1) If the President is satisfied that a situation has arisen whereby the financial stability or credit of Sri Lanka or of any part of the territory thereof is threatened, he may by Proclamation make a declaration to that effect.

(2) A Proclamation issued under paragraph (1)

(a) may be revoked or varied by a subsequent Proclamation;
(b) shall be laid before Parliament;
(c) shall cease to operate at the expiration of two months, unless before the expiration of that period it has been approved by a resolution of Parliament.

(3) During the period any such Proclamation as is mentioned in paragraph (1) is in operation, the President may give directions to any Governor of the Province to observe such canons of financial propriety as may be specified in the directions, and to give such other directions as the President may deem necessary and adequate for the purpose.

(4) Notwithstanding anything in the Constitution any such direction may include

(a) a provision requiring the reduction of salaries and allowances of all or any class of persons serving in connection with the affairs of the Province;
(b) a provision requiring all statutes providing for payments into or out of, a Provincial Fund to be reserved for the consideration of the President after they are passed by the Provincial Council.

(xLvi)

154T. The President may by Order published in the Gazette, take such action, or give such directions, not inconsistent with the provisions of the Constitution, as appears to him to be necessary or expedient, for the purposes of giving effect to the provisions of this Chapter, or for the administrative changes necessary therefor, or for the purpose of removing any difficulties.

(xLvii)

155.

(1) The Public Security Ordinance as amended and in force immediately prior to the commencement of the Constitution shall be deemed to be a law enacted by Parliament.

(2) The power to make emergency regulations under the Public Security Ordinance or the law for the time being in force relating to public security shall include the power to make regulations having the legal effect of over-riding, amending or suspending the operation of the provisions of any law, except the provisions of the Constitution.

(3) The provisions of any law relating to public security, empowering the President to make emergency regulations which have the legal effect of over-riding, amending or suspending the operation of the provisions of any law, shall not come into operation, except upon the making of a Proclamation under such law, bringing such provisions into operation.

(3A) Nothing in the proceeding provisions of this constitution shall be deemed to prohibit the making of emergency regulations, under the Public Security Ordinance or the law for the time being in force relating to public security, with respect to any matter set out in the Ninth Schedule or having the effect of overriding, amending or suspending the operation of a statute made by the Provincial Council.

(4) Upon the making of such a Proclamation, the occasion thereof shall, subject to the other provisions of this Article, be forthwith communicated to Parliament, and, accordingly -

(i) if such Proclamation is issued after the dissolution of Parliament such Proclamation shall operate as a summoning of Parliament to meet on the tenth day after such Proclamation, unless the Proclamation appoints an earlier date for the meeting which shall not be less than three days from the date of the Proclamation, and the Parliament so summoned shall be kept in session until the expiry or revocation of such or any further Proclamation or until the conclusion of the General Election whichever event occurs earlier and shall thereupon stand dissolved;
(ii) if Parliament is at the date of the making of such Proclamation, separated by any such adjournment or prorogation as will not expire within ten days, a Proclamation shall be issued for the meeting of Parliament within ten days.

(5) Where the provisions of any law relating to public security have been brought into operation by the making of a Proclamation under such law, such Proclamation shall, subject to the succeeding provisions of this Article, be in operation for a period of one month from the date of the making thereof, but without prejudice to the earlier revocation of such Proclamation or to the making of a further Proclamation at or before the end of that period.

(6) Where such provisions as are referred to in paragraph (3) of this Article, of any law relating to public security, have been brought into operation, by the making of a Proclamation under such law, such Proclamation shall expire after a period of fourteen days from the date on which such provisions shall have come into operation, unless such Proclamation is approved by a resolution of Parliament.

(7) Upon the revocation of a Proclamation referred to in paragraph (6) of this Article within a period of fourteen days from the date on which the provisions of any law relating to public security shall have come into operation or upon the expiry of such a Proclamation in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (6) no Proclamation made within thirty days next ensuing shall come into operation until the making thereof shall have been approved by a resolution of Parliament.

(8) If Parliament does not approve any Proclamation bringing such provisions as are referred to in paragraph (3) of this Article into operation, such Proclamation shall, immediately upon such disapproval, cease to be valid and of any force in law but without prejudice to anything lawfully done thereunder.

(9) If the making of a Proclamation cannot be communicated to and approved by Parliament by reason of the fact that Parliament does not meet when summoned, nothing contained in paragraph (6)or (7) Article, shall affect the validity or operation of such Proclamation.

Actually, the powers of the President are very vast and comprehensive. He has more checks than balances on other State organs (Legislature and Judiciary). Directly and indirectly he has more power over Provincial Councils as well.

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