Parliament yesterday (02) voted in favour of implementing the recommendations of Committee on Ethics and Privileges to suspend three MPs involved in a brawl in Parliamentary Lobby for a one month period.
Accordingly, State Minister Diana Gamage along with Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) MPs Sujith Sanjaya Perera and Rohana Bandara will be suspended from attending Parliament sittings for one month.
Fifty-seven MPs voted in favour of the motion while three Members abstained and one Member voted against.
SJB MPs walked out of the chamber at the time of the vote.
The vote was taken after the Opposition members protested about the decision to be implemented on State Minister Diana Gamage, Sujith Sanjaya Perera and Rohana Bandara claiming that the decision reached by the Committee was unfair.
They pointed out that the Special Committee chaired by Deputy Speaker Ajith Rajapakshe that Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena had appointed to probe the confrontation in Parliament's Lobby on October 20 had recommended vastly different punishments for the MPs.
The Committee chaired by the Deputy Speaker had unanimously recommended that State Minister Gamage be suspended for three months.
A majority of the Committee had decided that MP Sujith Sanjaya Perera should be issued a stern warning by the Speaker for his reaction during the confrontation while MP Rohana Bandara, who had shared video of the incident on social media, should be suspended for two weeks.
The Parliamentary Committee on Ethics and Privileges however, had recommended that all three Members be suspended for one month.
SJB MPs accused the government of misusing its majority on the Committee on Ethics and Privileges to disregard the recommendations of the Special Committee chaired by the Deputy Speaker and suspend all three MPs for one month; effectively reducing the punishment given to State Minister Gamage and increasing the punishments for MPs Perera and Bandara.
When the motion was presented to Parliament this morning, Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena announced that the suspension was coming into effect from yesterday.
Opposition SJB members strongly objected to the move prompting the Speaker to call for a vote.