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Government of Sri Lanka

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Government of Sri Lanka

Coat of arms of Sri Lanka, showing a lion holding a sword in its right forepaw surrounded by a ring made from blue lotus petals which is placed on top of a grain vase sprouting rice grains to encircle it. A Dharmacakra is on the top while a sun and moon are at the bottom on each side of the vase.
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Sri Lanka

The government of Sri Lanka is a semi-presidential system determined by the Sri Lankan Constitution.

Contents

  • Constitution 1
  • Executive branch 2
  • Legislative branch 3
  • Judicial Branch 4
  • Sri Lankan Law 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

Constitution

The Constitution of Sri Lanka has been the constitution of the island nation of Sri Lanka since its original promulgation by the National State Assembly on 7 September 1978. It is Sri Lanka's second republican constitution, and its third constitution since the country's independence (as Ceylon) in 1948. As of September 2010 it has been formally amended 18 times.

Executive branch

The President, directly elected for a six-year term, is head of state, head of government, and commander in chief of the armed forces. The election occurs under the Sri Lankan form of the contingent vote. Responsible to Parliament for the exercise of duties under the constitution and laws, the president may be removed from office by a two-thirds vote of Parliament with the concurrence of the Supreme Court.

The President appoints and heads a cabinet of ministers responsible to Parliament. The President's deputy is the prime minister, who leads the ruling party in Parliament. A parliamentary no-confidence vote requires dissolution of the cabinet and the appointment of a new one by the President.

 Summary of the 2010 Sri Lankan presidential election
Candidate Party Votes %
  Mahinda Rajapaksa United People's Freedom Alliance 6,015,934 57.88%
  Sarath Fonseka New Democratic Front 4,173,185 40.15%
Mohomad Cassim Mohomad Ismail Democratic United National Front 39,226 0.38%
Achala Ashoka Suraweera National Development Front 26,266 0.25%
Channa Janaka Sugathsiri Gamage United Democratic Front 23,290 0.22%
W. V. Mahiman Ranjith Independent 18,747 0.18%
A. S. P Liyanage Sri Lanka Labour Party 14,220 0.14%
Sarath Manamendra New Sinhala Heritage 9,684 0.09%
  M. K. Shivajilingam Independent 9,662 0.09%
Ukkubanda Wijekoon Independent 9,381 0.09%
Lal Perera Our National Front 9,353 0.09%
  Siritunga Jayasuriya United Socialist Party 8,352 0.08%
  Vikramabahu Karunaratne Left Front 7,055 0.07%
Aithurus M. Illias Independent 6,131 0.06%
  Wije Dias Socialist Equality Party 4,195 0.04%
Sanath Pinnaduwa National Alliance 3,523 0.03%
M. Mohamed Musthaffa Independent 3,134 0.03%
Battaramulle Seelarathana Thero Jana Setha Peramuna 2,770 0.03%
Senaratna de Silva Patriotic National Front 2,620 0.03%
Aruna de Zoyza Ruhuna People's Party 2,618 0.03%
Upali Sarath Kongahage United National Alternative Front 2,260 0.02%
Muthu Bandara Theminimulla All Are Citizens, All Are Kings Organisation 2,007 0.02%
Valid Votes 10,393,613 100.00%
Rejected Votes 101,838
Total Polled 10,495,451
Registered Electors 14,088,500
Turnout 74.50%
Source: Department of Elections, Sri Lanka

Legislative branch

The Parliament has 225 members, elected for a six year term, 196 members elected in multi-seat constituencies and 29 by proportional representation. The president may summon, suspend, or end a legislative session and dissolve Parliament. Parliament reserves the power to make all laws.

The primary modification is that the party that receives the largest number of valid votes in each constituency gains a unique "bonus seat" (see Hickman, 1999). The president may summon, suspend, or end a legislative session and dissolve Parliament any time after it has served for one year. Parliament reserves the power to make all laws. Since its independence in 1948, Sri Lanka has remained a member of the Commonwealth of Nations.

Parliament was dissolved on February 7, 2004 by President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga. Elections were held on April 4 and the new Parliament convened on April 23 and elected Mahinda Rajapaksa as the Prime Minister. Mr. Mahinda Rajapakse was elected to the post of President on November 17, 2005.

 Summary of the 2010 Sri Lankan parliamentary election
Alliances and parties Votes % Seats
District National Total
  United People's Freedom Alliance 4,846,388 60.33% 127 17 144
  United National Front3 2,357,057 29.34% 51 9 60
  Tamil National Alliance4 233,190 2.90% 13 1 14
  Democratic National Alliance 441,251 5.49% 5 2 7
Independent lists 38,947 0.48% 0 0 0
  Up-Country People's Front2 24,670 0.31% 0 0 0
Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal 20,284 0.25% 0 0 0
  Sinhalaye Mahasammatha Bhoomiputra Pakshaya 12,170 0.15% 0 0 0
  Tamil United Liberation Front 9,223 0.11% 0 0 0
  Tamil National People's Front5 7,544 0.09% 0 0 0
  Democratic People's Liberation Front
  • People's Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam
6,036 0.08% 0 0 0
Sri Lanka National Front 5,313 0.07% 0 0 0
Others 31,644 0.39% 0 0 0
Valid Votes 8,033,717 100.00% 196 29 225
Rejected Votes 596,972
Total Polled 8,630,689
Registered Electors 14,088,500
Turnout 61.26%
Source: Department of Elections, Sri Lanka
1. The EPDP contested separately in Vanni and with the United People's Freedom Alliance in all other districts.
2. The UCPF contested separately in Badulla and Nuwara Eliya, and with the United People's Freedom Alliance in all other districts.
3. The UNF contested under the name and symbol of United National Party.
4. The TNA contested under the name and symbol of Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi.
5. The TNPF contested under the name and symbol of All Ceylon Tamil Congress.

Judicial Branch

The judiciary is the system of courts that interprets and applies the law in the country. It is set out in the constitution, which defines courts as independent institutions within the traditional framework of checks and balances. The Sri Lankan courts are presided over by professional judges, judges of the Supreme Court are appointed by the President with the nomination of the Parliamentary Council, others by the Judicial Service Commission.[1]

Sri Lankan Law

Sri Lanka has a legal system which is an amalgam of English common law, Roman-Dutch civil law and Customary Law.

References

  1. ^ "Judicial System of Sri Lanka". Commonwealth Governance. Retrieved 17 November 2013. 

External links

General
    • Government of Sri Lanka
    • The Official Website of the Data and Information Unit of the Presidential Secretariat, Sri Lanka
Law
    • Official site of the Judicial Service Commission Secretariat
    • Sri Lanka's Legal Information Network
Executive Branch
    • Official site of the Presidency
    • Official site of the Presidential Secretariat
Legislative Branch
    • Official site of the Parliament of Sri Lanka
Judiciary
    • Official site of the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka
    • Official site of the Court of Appeal of Sri Lanka
Others
    • Official Government News Portal
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