10 December, 2019

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Integrity Of The Judiciary: Lawyers Can Decide Which Category They Belong To

By Shenali Waduge

Shenali Waduge

An institute to be held in esteem must function and follow the principles of ethics and the fundamentals of integrity of their profession. Members of the Judiciary, the Legislature or even the Executive to be regarded as icons of integrity must function with integrity, ethics and high moral standards. When they do not – there is conflict and when they cross each other’s turfs it aggravates the conflict. No institute becomes doyens of Integrity by default – it is the lawyers and judges that make a Judiciary “Independent”, it is the Parliamentarians who must function as “servants” of the people who voted them (not the reverse) and it is the Executive that must ensure he/she leads by example! Anyone violating such codes has no moral grounds to be pointing fingers. That doesn’t leave many standing does it and breaking coconuts is unlikely to solve matters either!

The Chief Justice now under the microscope herself had declared she is worried about the conduct of “some” lawyers while the Bar Association President Mr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakse agreed that there was a sharp decline in the quality of the legal profession. If there is deterioration in the legal profession it is no one but the members of the judiciary who must take the blame.

So long as lawyers function in questionable ways it is unlikely that the public will even respect lawyers or judges. If their shortcomings have been as a result of being trapped by outside forces – the simple answer is, the guilty are those who throw the bait and those who take the bait.

The misdeeds are many – lawyers have been found guilty of exploiting the innocence of their clients, lawyers have sought sexual favors from those unable to make lawyer payments, it is nothing different to what Minister Maithripala says of the sex maniacs in the Health Ministry, the deals struck between lawyers representing defendant and accuser to prolong cases is nothing new either, lawyers have been found to divulge classified client information thereby breaking the client confidentiality code and the list is no short one.

It is the judicial duty to “do justice according to law”. One finds it hard to understand how a lawyer can defend a known murderer, a rapist, a child killer and argue his case on the strength of the payment to allow such an offender to walk free citing technicalities! It may prove the arguing ability of the lawyer but it does little to uphold justice for those who are dead or raped! No lawyer should take a case based on the payments, the promotion, recognition associated with the case or even political affiliations.

All decisions must have a combination of moral cum legal principles. Lawyers become lawyers because they have a strong inclination to ensure justice, rights, legal systems and the codes of law prevails. They do not become lawyers only to gain fame and prestige and use that to charge exorbitant client fees using the strength of their ability to use the law to even secure the release of people best locked up and safe from society.

Legislators on the other hand are those voted in by the people. If people vote for politicians who are unsuitable to function as servants of the people – there is an adage that says the people get the government they deserve. People – the voters must be aware of who they are voting or refrain from voting altogether. If people vote a rogue into parliament he is only carrying out his mandate – afterall people voted for him! Until such time people intelligently vote their representatives, parliament is likely to continue its colorful record of malpractices and there is nothing to be really surprised or groan about either.

However, with the judiciary it is very different. They have all the powers before them to commit zero-crimes in terms of zero-legal malpractices. The argument is that for any authority to be declared as INDEPENDENT it must first ensure that all those belonging to that authority function with independence. When they don’t and misadventures come to light it is unfair to blame only one party – afterall it takes two to tango.

That’s not to say there are no excellent lawyers who uphold every word of justice and are people highly respected in society.

A code of conduct for lawyers and judges is much in need!

However, 98% of lawyers give the other 2% of lawyers a bad name – the lawyers can decide which category they belong to!

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Latest comments

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    “One finds it hard to understand how a lawyer can defend a known murderer, a rapist, a child killer and argue his case on the strength of the payment to allow such an offender to walk free citing technicalities!”

    I don’t understand what this writer is trying to say. Even the worst criminal is entitled to legal representation under the rules of fair trial, equality before the law etc.

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      A person is innocent until proven guilty. The proof of guilt should be beyond doubt. The best and the most successful lawyers are experts at creating this doubt. However, it is for the magistrate or the judge to dispense justice- a very difficult task, when the laws are full of holes. We are currently witnessing in the case of the Chief Justice herself, laws and the constitution itself being made donkeys to be ridden.

      Shenali, this is a very thoughtful presentation, compared to many written by you on other topics in recent times.

      Dr. Rajasingham Narendran

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        You have misunderstood the Writers hidden purpose in down-grading
        the Legal profession at this given time – as she cannot analyse
        honestly the “14 Offences” CJ is accused of, being a Regime-madame
        of the media! You experienced the different tone undoubtedly in
        this piece of writing.

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          Poor thing! she looks [Edited out]

          This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy
          http://colombotelegraph.com/comments-policy/

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        DR RN,
        I’m indeed surprised by that comment.
        Perhaps, you like to enlighten us which part of the above article from Shenali you found “thoughtful”?

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          Chandra,

          My iPad has made an automatic change to your name. My apologies .

          Dr.R.N

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          Because otherwritings hadalways been thoughtless

      • 0
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        Very silly article indeed.

        Sri Lanka’s legislature is full of uneducated and uncultured knaves like RW, goons, criminals, fools and geriatrics who don’t know the first thing about democracy, good governance, and checks and balances!

        The PSC is in CONTEMPT OF COURT and should be put behind bars and the shameless Ranil Wickramasinghe should pull the UNP members out from the Kangaroo Court that is the PSC!

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      Well, well, this is a very silly piece of writing because the executive and legislature of Sri Lanka are far worse than the lawyers. The politicians who sit in parliament are a bunch of Kangaroos who are running a Kangaroo court in the miracle of Asia by the Diyawanna Oya in which they – govt and opposition MPs alike should be drowned one and all.
      Rajapassa, Ranil Wickramasinghe and the politicians in parliament are a bunch of knaves, uneducated morons, fools, criminals and geriatrics like Vasu – the likes of SD Dissanaiyake, Mervin Silva etc. The Lawyers are actually far better and more educated. This is why the Sri Lanka Spring will follow the winter of our discontent! Rajapassa’s days are numbered, the Buddhist prelates have spoken and the military will follow the religious leaders and moreover the people have had enough of this nasty and brutish regime..
      The Rajapassa dictatorship will be swept out of power.
      Ranil Wickramasinghe should be consigned to the dustbin of history – second only to Rajaspassa as the great anti-democrat and anti patriot of Lanka.
      Karu Jayasuriya and Premadasa and Rosy Senanayake must take over the UNP!

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        Shenali, more to the point to question the morons in the Sri Lanka parliament that are running and/or supporting a Kangaroo court and fancy themselves above the law!
        These Kangaroos have been collectively dignified by the title ‘legislature’, but should be asked BEFORE ANYONE ELSE to do some introspection and decide what kind of human beings they are? – the morally decrepit as most of them are – just like the barbarian Rajapassa who is their king, or people with principles to stand for what is right..?
        Get with the plot woman!

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      Prasad- you have to excuse Shenali.
      If i may add she is slightly “wet behind her ears” but learning fast.
      We have noticed she does makes the most daftest statements without even thinking she has shot herself in the foot.
      Give her some time….
      sigh….

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      Prasad Abeysinghe;
      Let me try to tell you what this writer is REALLY trying to say: it is that she is unregenerate piece of …. who continues to maintain her reputation, well earned I should say, as a supine, servile sycophant of the most violent and undemocratic of regimes that this country has ever endured.
      Colombo Telegraph really needs to take a look at its editorial policy which, increasingly, is beginning to look like the “new” Sunday Leader’s!!

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      Why is she not asking former Ambassador to Italy Hemantha Warnakulasuriya appointed by Prez MR and now making a valiant effort to defend Duminda Silva, that he should immediately withdraw from appearing for Duminda?
      That is not possible for this type of idiotic writers.
      They are given the topic and the content to write with big money by this MR regime and kept with an independent facade that is difficult to maintain.
      Fault is also with CT editorial that dumps any stupid article into their pickle.
      But, why I am I wasting time on this?
      I am sorry. I don’t belong to this club that wastes time and space over a waste paper basket!
      Amarnath

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    The CJ had not learned the ‘habits’ of lawyers – eneumerated by the writer,as she had not practiced in courts.
    And, she had been ‘blind’ to these ‘habits’ of lawyers,and the goings on in courts.
    She,& the JSC do not appear to have made any attempt to clear the backlog of cases – said to be more than 65,000 – to benefit litigants,especially those who could not afford lawyers’ fees – which have risen steadily.
    The Judicial Service Commision headed by her failed to lay down a ‘code of conduct’ for lawyers and enforce it.
    The JSC did not advice magistrates who are the first tier of the judicial system to encounter “accused” persons,to inquire the accused’s side of the ‘story’ before deciding on remand or bail,as required by law;also, to ensure transmission of postmortem reports to lawers & litigants – now these are kept a ‘secret’ unlike in days of old.
    The nation needs judiciary who first and foremost have the welfare of the common man,in litigation.

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    The Case against CJ is very serious,is involvment of Public concern and Judiciary concern.
    This is not conflict between President and Parliment and CJ,the most parmount issue is probe of her involvment of Corruaption of( her) and husband.There is no any other an instituation to probe such case except Parliment.
    Parliment is mandate of Sovergnity of People.We like it or not we have accpect verdit of Parliment.Nation pillar is Parliment ofcause Our democracy order nobody above Parliment,even President.
    If we are going save on corruaption of CJ as nation will lose base and foundation of Sri Lankan demoracy of people’s sovergnity framework.
    Our nation had been challange by JVP and LTTE anarchist cum Terrorist last 45 years,those evil forcres have undermine Sri Lankan democracy by Bullet of Politics.
    We don’t want any type of Judiciary move undermine our nation Political-Democracy order by few persons greedy corrupation and misused of to reamin in authority of RULE OF LAW.
    Colonial system no longer exist it has gone to history of past.
    World Community has established multi-power blocks and UNO has taken controal and slove many conflicts in thier hand.
    Sri Lankan democray rise new era has differant featurs in NEW MISSION and VISION.
    SO-called intolerant unpredicital and whimsical behaviour of Judiciary of our Court of Law will defenitaly undermine moral and discipline of Democracy society of our NATION.
    Nation’ authority of Rule of Law and court of Law if challanges democracy strategy and an opportunties in our country it will end with tragedy of history hard won Indepandance,Soverginity, Terrorial Intergrity and Democracy of people of Sri Lanka.

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      N. Wimaladasa:
      If you believe that the way to display your monumental stupidity is to write at greater length than others, let me say that you are succeeding. Apart from conveying the distinct impression of being a Rajapaksa Lackey and an ignoramus, it is hard to discover what you are trying to say in your presentation. However, it could well be that you have NOTHING to say, hence the confusion!

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    She says-“One finds it hard to understand how a lawyer can defend a known murderer, a rapist, a child killer and argue his case on the strength of the payment to allow such an offender to walk free citing technicalities!”

    So, if an alleged criminal should not be entitled to a lawyer- where do we sort things out? In the underworld?

    Does this writer know anything? Please Colombo Telegraph, is there anything news worthy or think worthy in this article? 98% of this article is stating the obvious. Rest of the 2% is uneducated opinion
    s.

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    No doubt this is normal stuff and it expresses the expectations of a society to be governed according to Laws and moral codes. In this process everyone is entitled to be cleared of wrong doing after in investigation and procedures laid down.

    The problem starts when those in “Authority” (of course granted to them by the people) act in default of such powers and override all norms of fair play and justice.

    One such glaring instance of the recent past is the “pardon” given to the ex-Mayor of Kandy who was charged for “Fraud” by the Bribery Commission ( a linmb of the Government) and convicted. In apeal this conviction was upheld. But the President used his “authority” to paradon him and he was able to walk free.

    So where is the :”moral”. “etheics” “good governance” etc. that we expect from those in authority? What do you expect from those under? No wonder the whole system is on the brink of collapse.

  • 0
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    Another excellent article by Shenali . Very surprised to see this in the Colombo telegraph.

    • 0
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      What exactly is excellent about this article?
      It is full of gibberish.

    • 0
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      What is excellent about this article? She is demonstrating her ignorance and servile weakness. Why does Colombo telegraph entertain these poor quality articles?

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    Nona, kiyana deyak kiyannako katath therena widiayata, thatama thatama kiyanne nethuwa. MRta support nang kiyanna kelin.

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      Excellent! The lady writer is trying hard to please the regime. Not difficult to read between the lines!

  • 0
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    Whom is this writer trying to take to task, lawyers or judges? She first makes a reference to a remark supposed to have been made by the Chief Justice about the conduct of some lawyers,later adding that the BASL President Wijayadasa Rajapaksha himself had agreed that there is a sharp decline in the quality of the legal profession. She proceeds to say: “If there is a deterioration in the legal profession it is no one but the members of the judiciary who should take the blame.” What is she really driving at? Does she mean that the judiciary should take the blame for the supposed misconduct of the lawyers?

    The topical issue is over the threat to the independence of the judiciary. Is this writer trying a draw red herring across the trail?

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      Agree. Why doesnt she talk about the decline of Politicians. What she says about lawyers should apply equally to politicians and even the President. She says if politicians do such things the people are to blame for electing them. So politicians are free to do any crime and get away with it?

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    A completely useless article by someone who is a publicity seeker. All her articles are crap.

  • 0
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    The writer of this article has tried to be too clever in trying to give a certain message but got it boomeranged with reader Narangoda’s pithy remark followed by Saman Wijesiri in a moderate tone.Congrats to them both.

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    I have read several articles of her. They are either racist or tp defend MR family.

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    I did not want to be too harsh on SW in my previous comment But I find that readers have give her fitting replies. She must have thought that the CT readers are so dumb that they cannot read between the lines!

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    I did not want to be too harsh on SW in my previous comment But I find that readers have given her fitting replies. She must have thought that the CT readers are so dumb that they cannot read between the lines!

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    Shenali [Edited out]

    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy
    http://colombotelegraph.com/comments-policy/

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    Shenali are you related Pavithra?

  • 0
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    Shenali Could you kindly tell us your real educational background please !
    This article is similar to articles written by C.J. Chandraprema who is a media mercenary. Ar you a student of C.j.Chandraprema !!!!

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      PoduJanaya says:

      “media mercenary”

      I like the description. Can I use it in my comments? Or do you have sole ownership of this phrase? I hope you would not sue me for infringement of copy right accusing me of plagiarism?

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    Any system is as good as the people who runs it.

    Even if the Chief Justice did not know how corrupt the Sri Lankan Lawyers were, that is a bad bistake.

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    shenali waduge talks a load of rubbish all the time. she is very very [edited out] her only aim in life is to accuse india for sri lanka’s ills. wadu [edited out]don’t you find any fault with sri lanka at all. that’s very very strange. before pointing your finger at india, try to put your own house in order. india is only trying to diffuse the tension that has been dragging on for the past 64 years between tamil people and sinhala people. how do you intend satisfying the minority tamil aspirations and their demand for a greater say in running their affairs.why don’t you write something productive instead of having a go at india. there are few others like you in lanka toilet web who write a load of bollocks. how about that idiot weerasinghe who writes letters to prime ministers and presidents. what a thicko he is.i don’t think anyone will bother to read his letters and no doubt they will be binned. of course lanka toilet web readers can have a fun time. this idiot can’t even live in the so called paradise on earth and instead living in canada as an economic refugee. then there is another geezer called mahindapala. he is a great grand dad and an ignorant old fool who writes a load of crap on lanka toilet web. again he doesn’t live in paradise. another economic refugee living in australia. there are whole loads of other sinhala layabouts and vagabonds who write a load of cobblers in lanka toilet web, majority of them are economic refugees in the west. then you have this ignorant idiot called lorenzio or whoever , he is thick more than two planks. all in all lanka toilet web is inundated by sinhala pariahs who lack basic education and intelligence. shenali waduge like others is a waste of space.

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      Rama Your arrogance in labelling people who you hardly know as idiots shows your level of education . Shenali speaks sense and the truth will hurt . Learn to listen to anothers point of view and not label them with names. This shows very poor taste and it speaks volumes for your background .

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        calm down lady. i stand by what i said. i have been reading what people like shenali have to say in lanka toilet web. in my opinion they write a load of rubbish and hence i brand them as ignorant idiots.i can’t see anything wrong with that. i am not a hypocrite. i call a spade a spade. by the way my level of education is good enough to find a reasonable job and my family background is more than adequate to find a quite attractive nortehrn indian wife.

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        kumudini
        Can you please explain which part of the following makes sense?:
        “One finds it hard to understand how a lawyer can defend a known (or an alleged )murderer, a rapist, a child killer and argue his case on the strength of the payment to allow such an offender to walk free citing technicalities!”

        Everyone, including alleged offenders (criminals?) have the right of legal representation to prove their innocence until found guilty by the rule of law, with or without payment.
        Some get away on lack of evidence, (or some even loss of memory!)and on technicalities.

        It’s ironic we do have “alleged” murders, drug dealers, embezzlers, fraudsters representing (sic) the people in our parliament.
        I wonder if the author is also referring to the President (also a lawyer) willing to turn a blind eye and protect the same criminals (“alleged”)on some spurious excuse.

        As you rightly say- the level of education and common sense is rightly exposed.

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