Posted on December 29, 2009 by srilankalawlessness
“If the Attorney General as an advisor to the government acts on the target of achieving the target of having all trials finalised within the period of one year from the date of the incident the stronger criminal justice system would result in Sri Lanka.”
A news report published in the Lankapuvath entitled ‘A stronger law is needed’ which reported a speech by the Attorney General, Mohan Peiris, raises some serious concerns as to whether the already seriously damaged criminal justice system in Sri Lanka is to suffer even greater setbacks in the near future. The thrust of the report under a stronger criminal seems to be not about assimilation of the developments of the criminal law which have been achieved throughout the world but rather in the possibility of abandoning some of the basics of criminal justice under the pretext of making the system stronger.
Presently the criminal justice system in Sri Lanka suffers great weaknesses in the following areas: Sri Lanka does not have a witness protection law. Despite of a bill being placed before parliament this law has been swept under the carpet. (more…)
Filed under: Attorney General Depatment, corruption, crime, human rights, Human Rights Commission, politics, rule of law, Sri Lanka | Leave a Comment »
Posted on August 17, 2009 by srilankalawlessness
Undoing the small reforms of the former Attorney General, KC Kamalasabayson
KC Kamalasabayson, PC, was the Attorney General of Sri Lanka from 15th October 1999 to the 7th of April 2007. As compared to several Attorney Generals before him, beginning particularly with Sunil Silva, and those who followed, KC Kamalasabayson is remembered as a relatively more politically neutral person, who attempted to keep a fine balance in a situation where rule of law and the legal institutions were much under threat.
Let it be said clearly that KC Kamalasabayson was not a great reformer. In fact, particularly since 1978, things have gone so fundamentally wrong on all matters relating to law, and executive control has spread so much, that the room for independence for the Attorney General’s department has been very much restricted. As several previous Attorney Generals have willingly cooperated with the existing regimes, there was not much of an effort to maintain the institution’s independence. Despite the colossal attack on constitutionalism and all the best-known principles of a rule of law, no Attorney General thought fit to demonstrate their opposition to the fundamentally wrong legal positions of several regimes. No one has gone on record by way of resignation to register a protest against the downsliding of the most basic norms of law in the country. (more…)
Filed under: attorney general, Attorney General Depatment, corruption, crime, extrajudicial killings, human rights, justice, police, politics, rule of law, Sri Lanka, torture, violations | Leave a Comment »
Posted on August 13, 2009 by srilankalawlessness
Attorney General’s Department is a Phantom Limb
At one time there existed a department called the Attorney General’s department. Its functions were to provide legal advice to the government on all matters of public interest, and to be the prosecuting agency in Sri Lanka. This agency still exists in name. However, substantially it has lost its place as the government’s legal adviser and prosecuting agency. Judging by the way the government’s acts now, it cannot be said that it is acting on the basis of proper legal advice. Judging from so many cases which constitute serious crimes and are not prosecuted, it is also not possible to say that there is a genuine and an authentic prosecuting agency in the country. Added to this, judging by filling of cases purely for political purposes, it is also no longer possible to say that the prosecutions in Sri Lanka are undertaken purely on the basis on law.
Virtual demise of the Attorney General’s department is a matter of grave concern (more…)
Filed under: abductions, attorney general, Attorney General Depatment, crime, disappearances, extrajudicial killings, human rights, illegal arrest, illegal detention, justice, police, politics, rule of law, Sri Lanka, torture, violations | Leave a Comment »
Posted on August 9, 2009 by srilankalawlessness
FAILURS OF THE IGP AND THE ATTORNEY GENERAL REGARDIG EXECUTIONS WITHOUT TRIAL
‘What is happening today is that both the police department and the Attorney General’s department are subordinating their authority to the Ministry of Defense. The Ministry of Defense is acting as the agency that creates the attitudes relating to which crimes should be investigated and prosecuted and which crimes should not be investigated and prosecuted.’
The kidnapping and assault of Nipuna Ramanayake, allegedly by several police officers and the family members of CCD director Vaas Gunawardene, took a new turn when about fifty persons brought from outside the area demonstrated with slogans that the young student Ramanayake was in fact a leader of a criminal gang. Obviously the demonstration was orchestrated to diffuse the public support for investigations into the kidnapping and torture charges. The demonstrators also are reported to have destroyed the posters put up by fellow students in support of Nipuna.
That incident itself is a demonstration of the manner in which demands for investigation by victims of crime are trivialized in Sri Lanka. The attempt now is to let people forget the incident of the kidnapping and assault and that therefore any public pressure on the authorities to conduct the inquiries will be poo-poo’d. Then business will return to normal.
There is a severe contradiction between trying to eliminate criminals, as claimed to be the goal of the government, and trivialization of crime that has taken place in Sri Lanka over a long period of time. (more…)
Filed under: abductions, Attorney General Depatment, corruption, crime, Defence Ministry, human rights, IGP, illegal arrest, justice, police, rule of law, Sri Lanka, torture, violations | Leave a Comment »