Gota wins another legal battle | Sunday Observer

Gota wins another legal battle

SLPP Presidential hopeful Gotabaya Rajapaksa had another triumphant day in court last Friday, when a three-judge bench of the Court of Appeal unanimously dismissed a writ application challenging the validity of his Sri Lankan citizenship.

The sound of firecrackers pierced the night skies, as supporters of the former Defence Secretary celebrated the victory of their hero in court. Inside the courtroom, attempted celebrations drew the ire of the Bench, that was forced to call for order after cheers and applause erupted while President of the Court of Appeal Justice Yasantha Kodagoda was delivering the ruling.

The petition filed by civil society activists threatened to derail Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s presidential dreams, if the plea had been successful.

Rajapaksa deployed a large team of lawyers led by five President’s Counsel including Romesh De Silva and Ali Sabry PCs. President’s Counsel Gamini Marapana appeared for former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who was the sixth respondent in the case. Attorney at Law Suren Fernando, with Niran Anketell and Khyati Wikramanayake appeared for the petitioners and put up a valiant battle on the legal merits of the case. The dismissal of the case cleared the way for the former Defence Secretary to hand in nominations tomorrow. A detailed order will be delivered by the Court of Appeal early next week, since it was agreed by all counsel when they approached the bench last Friday, that reasons for the order could wait given the time constraints. Shortly before the order was delivered at 6PM last Friday, former Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa filed a deposit at the Elections Commission, under another party.