AG informs CA: PSC has sole authority on retirement age

The Attorney General informed the Court of Appeal that the Public Service Commission retains the authority to make decisions regarding the retirement of all public servants including doctors and the Court of Appeal has no power to issue orders in this regard.

Additional Solicitor General Nerin Pulle, representing the Attorney General, mentioned this when a writ petition filed by 176 medical consultants against making them retire at 60 was considered by the Court of Appeal. Appellate Court President Justice Nishanka Bandula Karunaratne and Justice M.A.R. Marikkar considered the petition.

The Additional Solicitor General presented a preliminary objection regarding this petition and stated that according to constitutional law, public servants should retire at 60. He pointed out that if the retirement age is extended, the power to make related decisions remains with the Public Service Commission.

Arguing that the petition could not be continued, the Additional Solicitor General pointed out that the Appellate Court was not in a position to intervene and give orders regarding the matter. Accordingly, he moved court not to issue notices to the respondents in this petition and dismiss it at the first stage without taking it to trial.

After considering the facts, the Appellate Court decided to announce its decision on whether to accept this preliminary objection or not on May 17. The gazette notification issued deciding to make retire the public servants at 60 years was suspended until that date, with effect only to medical consultants and doctors. This petition was filed by a group of medical consultants specializing in various medical fields such as cardiology and neurology. The respondents are the Secretary of the Ministry of Public Administration and Home Affairs, the Cabinet and others. The petition states that medical consultants were able to work till 63 on average and the Cabinet has decided to reduce the age limit to 60 and make them retire on 17-10-2022.

The President’s Counsel who represented the petitioners pointed out before court that the decision was illegal and their legitimate expectation was to continue in the service until at least 63. Therefore, they requested that the decision be annulled.

Having considered the facts, the court previously issued an interim order suspending the gazette notification deciding to make the public employees retire at the age of 60, only for doctors and consultants.

by Daily News Sri Lanka

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