Former Attorney General Shibly Aziz, PC was elected as the new President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) at last Thursday's island-wide elections.
Mr. Aziz received a total of 2,346 votes to his nearest rival Palitha Kumarasinghe, PC who received 1,953 votes. Mr. R.R.S. Thangarajah received 71 votes while Mr. Neil Dias who withdrew from the election on a request made by President Mahinda Rajapaksa as reported in the Sunday Times last week, received 48 votes nevertheless as his name remained on the ballot paper.
There were 60 spoilt votes. Out of a total number of 9,728 registered voters, 4,478 cast their votes ( 46%). Mr. Aziz carried the Colombo Bar by a majority of 293 votes.
“I think the Bar has spoken out very loudly and clearly that it wanted an independent Bar and we will try to achieve that as much as possible. We want to be bipartisan in our approach and we want to ensure that it is the rule of law which prevails and we’ll cooperate with the judiciary and the Government to achieve that,” Mr. Aziz told the Sunday Times yesterday.
Mr. Aziz said the BASL will work towards ensuring that the correct work ethic is followed by all lawyers.
” I think the lawyers are as anxious to ensure that the correct work ethic prevails in the Bar and I’m sure we’ll have the full cooperation of all lawyers to achieve that,” he said.
Related Link: The bar's message to the president -- FOCUS On Rights