Parliament will have a Special Sitting on Monday, Nov 11 November to debate a Bill on Prevention of Offences in Sports an important proposed law to crack down on corruption in sports.
Speaker Karu Jayasuriya ordered the special sitting on a request by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.
According to yesterday’s Order Paper, the National Innovation Agency Bill and three Regulations under the Section 41 read with Section 31 of the Sports Law No. 25 of 1973 regarding National Associations of Sports were scheduled to be debated.
When it comes to the three regulations under the Sports Law, Parliament General Secretary informed the Speaker that the regulations had not been approved by the Sectoral Oversight Committee. Without that approval, they could not be taken into the debate, Parliament was informed.
Sports Minister Harin Fernando then said that when the 3 regulations were taken into the discussion at the Sectoral Oversight Committee, there was no quorum in it.
“However, the Bill on Prevention of Offences in Sports approved and why it was not in the Order Paper?” he questioned and charged that there was a conspiracy in Parliament to stop debating the Bill to protect corrupt persons.
The Speaker then announced that if the House agrees the three Regulations could be debated without the approval of the Sectoral Oversight Committee. Leader of the House Minister Lakshman Kiriella said that the government agreed to hold the debate.
Both the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) said that they also agreed to hold the debate because of the importance of the regulations. However, this practice should not be continued, they insisted.
Therefore, the debate on the regulations was held and Parliament was adjourned until 3 December.
The Business Committee headed by the Speaker then decided to hold a Special Parliamentary Sitting on 11 November to debate Bill on Prevention of Offences in Sports since the Government insisted on holding a debate on the Bill as soon as possible. The National Innovation Agency Bill will also be presented to Parliament on the same day for Second Reading.