The amended Divineguma bill has been passed in Parliament with 160 MPs voting for and 53 voting against. The opposition UNP, TNA and DNA voted against the bill while 11 members abstained.
The government has made 10 amendments to the Bill based on the recommendations made by the Supreme Court to avert a referendum.
The Supreme Court after considering 14 petitions filed against the Bill ruled that certain clauses of the draft bill had to be approved by a two-third majority in the parliament as well as through a public referendum unless those clauses were amended.
The Divineguma Bill proposes the establishment of a new department by amalgamating the Samurdhi Authority, Southern Development Authority and the Udarata Development Authority to better achieve the grassroots economic development and alleviate poverty. The new department will function under the Ministry of Economic Development.
Courtesy: Ada Derana