Speaker Karu Jayasuriya yesterday said that those who threatened to set the House on fire, could not be allowed to stifle democracy.
Speaker Jayasuriya reprimanded Joint Opposition MPs Dinesh Gunawardena, Keheliya Rambukwella and Prasanna Ranaweera for trying to shout Constitutional lawyer and MP Dr.Jayampathy Wickramaratne down and disturb his speech repeatedly.
As Dr.Wickramaratne took the floor opening the Constitutional Assembly debate for the second day, the JO MPs repeatedly disturbed him asking for opportunities to raise a ‘Point of Order’.
The MP declined to allow the JO MPs take his time and tried to continue his speech.
Speaker Jayasuriya asked the JO MPs to raise their concerns in the time slot allocated to them, adding that the MP must not be disturbed. MPs Dinesh Gunawardena, Keheliya Rambukwella and Prasanna Ranaweera defying the Speaker’s order made a din in the House.
The Speaker, at this point, noted those who threatened to set the House on fire could not be allowed to stifle democracy in this manner. “Every MP has the right to speak and it is my duty to safeguard this right. All of you will be given time, don’t disturb others. If you cannot conduct yourself properly then leave the House,” he warned.
As MP Gunawardena yelled at the Speaker saying “it is a shame”, the Speaker retorted that he was ashamed to see the mean conduct of senior Parliamentarians.
Dr. Wickramaratne however managed to continue his speech amidst continuous disturbances.