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Friday, September 24, 2021

The culture of impunity is at the highest ever since the war ended in this country – M.A. Sumanthiran, M.P.

There’s no rule of Law [in Sri Lanka]; from this morning, several issues that are being made, we know that; the minister for public security is unable to answer those questions: “all I can say is ask that question officially”! I mean why do we meet here? and questions such as that of persons being abducted, I repeat, abducted, by the police not in uniform.

This is a very serious issue.

A public security minister to arrange abductions?

It only shows a thorough breakdown of the law and order situation in this country. I don’t know why we even have minister called a public security minister? When senior lecturers, student leaders, and others are abducted in broad day light, when so much all of that is being filmed by police personnel in civvies.

Somebody else will do this tomorrow, and we won’t know whether it is a police or someone else? the underworld will do this, there will be abductions for ransoms..

Why do they have to come in civvies? Why do they have to come in white vans? You are reminding the white van culture; you want to tell the country – “remember we did this earlier we have brought it back” you want to bring back those memories. You want to instill fear into people’s mind, and that is why you are doing this.

Image: Navy abducted 11 students, young people in Colombo, purely for ransom. Those persons who were suspected, main suspects are not being prosecuted.

But as was raised by the leader of the JVP – Hon. Anura Kumara Dissanayake, somebody else will do this tomorrow, and we won’t know whether it is a police or someone else? the underworld will do this, there will be abductions for ransoms, not that the Navy is above that.

Attorney general is not acting independently

You know very well, how they abducted 11 students, young people in Colombo, purely for ransom. And what do we have today? Those persons who were suspected, main suspects are not being prosecuted.

The Hon. Attorney general is not acting independently, he’s looking for orders from above and granting all those that the executive wants. How can abductions such as that go unpunished, go unprosecuted? This is the news that we get every day.

So on the one hand we have this huge problem of the pandemic, that is not being addressed by the country, resulting in Sri Lankan’s being black listed. The WHO has given a statement and Sri Lanka is one of those, that has not dealt with this issue properly and therefore the Delta variant is on the rise, the spread is on the rise.

On the other hand, utilizing a pandemic you are wreaking havoc in the law and order situation in the country. You are terrorizing people, you are trying to get them to kneel down in submission to your whims and fancies.

The culture of impunity is at the highest ever since the war ended in this country. And that is today, because no one knows if a person can be arrested after going for a live TV show outside the studio, MP’s can be arrested as we leave the Parliament for what we have said here. You won’t say because this MP made this speech in Parliament, it is privileged, but that would be the real reason for taking….

 (Hon. Sarath Weerasekera Interrupts) You have the brass to call my speech nonsense? Who are you? absolute havoc you are wreaking in the country and you have the brass to stand up here and try to answer me? sit down please, you speak when you have to speak, you don’t answer when questions are raised. All you can say is raise it officially. I am talking about what you are doing today, how you have sent the goons on the attack to arrest University academics, to arrest teachers, to arrest trade union leaders, not in uniform. If the word nonsense is to attached to anything, that is to the Hon. Minster, not to my speech. I am making a point. There’s no point of order ask him to sit down.

Teachers  are demonstrating on justifiable grounds

So all I am saying is that the teachers today are demonstrating on very justifiable grounds. They have come out in protest against the Kotalawala defense university bill, and we saw how they were arrested, produced before the magistrate, who enlarged them on bail and at the gate of the magistrate court they were bundled into a jeep by this minister’s goons and taken to Mullaitivu.

If trade union rights can’t be respected by this government I don’t know what they will respect.

What kind of Justice is that?

Now he walks away unable to say anything, so and therefore the teachers came out in protest. There is a B.C. Perera report – He must be going now to organize my arrest as I leave the Parliament – there is a B.C.Perera report has recommended how anomalies with regard to teachers’ and principals’ salaries be resolved. That must be implemented, that is all that the teachers are asking.

You don’t have to attack them like this, you don’t have to arrest them like this, you don’t have to arrest trade unionist like this  After all the SLFP which is the core, which is a foundation of who the government consist of is based on trade unions. And trade unions rights  If trade union rights can’t be respected by this government I don’t know what they will respect. Thank you for the opportunity, I am saying on both these issues, on Covid – 19 , challenge that the country faces, you have failed and you have made the situation far worse by how you deal with law and order in the country today.

Excerpts from the speech made by Hon. M.A. Sumanthiran M.P. on 06th August 2021, in Parliament

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