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Confront UN panel by implementing 17th amendment – Former CJ

27 April 2011

The report presented by Ban Ki-moon’s ‘Panel of Experts’ could be answered by implementing the 17th amendment says former Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva.

Speaking at the inaugural convention of the Colombo District branch of the National Intellectuals and Professionals Organization (NIPO) held yesterday (26th) the former Chief Justice said, “Had the 17th amendment been implemented appropriately this kind of situation would never have arisen.
Even the European Union asked the implementation of the 17th amendment to make available the GSP + to Sri Lanka. The present Chief Justice too says it would have been better if the 17th amendment had been implemented. However, he paved the way to bring in the 18th amendment.

The present government deals with the international in an idiotic manner. As a result of the ‘Hedging deal’ the government will have to pay more than US$800 million soon.  That kind of situation would never have arisen if the decision given by the then Supreme Court was implemented.

There aren’t any criminal charges in the report by the UN. What exists in it is only to have an impartial inquiry regarding allegations against the government of Sri Lanka. The report states a fair investigation should be carried out on five charges including alleged shell attacks on hospitals, bad treatment of those who were arrested, failing to protect civilians.

These charges should be answered by the Army. However, such inquiries cannot be met by imprisoning the commander who directed the war. Only the former Commander of the Army Gen. Sarath Fonseka could answer these questions.  It is he who directed the war. Ours is the only country where the Army Commander who directed the war has been imprisoned using military law.

These allegations can be answered only by holding a fair and unbiased inquiry. For that impartial mechanism should be established. This could be done only by the independent commission established through the 17th amendment.”


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