22 September, 2020

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Letter To Ban Ki-moon On The Plan To Impeach The CJ

By Bijo Francis

Bijo Francis

6 January 2103

Honourable Mr. Ban Ki-moon

Secretary General

United Nations SA-1B15

New York, NY 10027

Fax: + 212-963-7055

Honourable Secretary General

Re: The plan to impeach the Chief Justice of Sri Lanka and imminent danger to the rule of law and democracy in Sri Lanka

Greetings from the Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC)

I am certain that your office is already aware regarding the critical situation undermining the rule of law and democracy in Sri Lanka that has developed by way of an open conflict between the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka and the Government of Sri Lanka. This conflict relates to the impeachment, by the government of the Chief Justice of Sri Lanka, Mrs. Shirani Bandaranatake.

The Supreme Court in its judgment dated 1 January 2013, has stated that the process adopted by the government for impeachment is unconstitutional and hence illegal. The UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers has stated that the manner in which the Government of Sri Lanka is proceeding against the Chief Justice violate the principles of separation of powers; independence of the judiciary and the process is the culmination of a series of attacks against the independence of judiciary.

The ALRC is contacting your office fearing that within the coming five days that is by 11 January there will be such a drastic change within the political system of Sri Lanka, which would transform Sri Lanka’s judiciary to a mere administrative organ without judicial powers, and hence will be unable to protect the liberty of individual citizens. The judiciary in Sri Lanka will be transformed into an instrument at the service of the executive.

Perhaps during your tenure in office you may not have been confronted with a situation where democracy and the rule of law is abandoned and dictatorship established through a parliamentary process. This is exactly what the Government of Sri Lanka is attempting to achieve in Sri Lanka.

According to the announcements made by the government, on 8 January the President will address the parliament on the report made by a Parliamentary Select Committee constituted by the government to impeach the Chief Justice. It is this process that the Supreme Court has declared invalid and as illegal and is against the fabric of the constitution. However, the government has announced that subsequent to the President’s address to the parliament, there will be two days’ of debate after which the issue of impeachment will be voted in the parliament. The government has more than the required majority to have the motion passed.

Since the Chief Justice is challenging the legality of her removal from office and the entire process held unconstitutional by the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka, the ALRC fears that the Chief Justice will be removed from office by force and a new Chief Justice who is willing to oppose the judgment of the Supreme Court appointed. The resulting chaotic situation will be disastrous to the rule of law and democracy in Sri Lanka.

Besides, since the Judicial Services Association and the Bar Association of Sri Lanka have categorically opposed the removal of the Chief Justice since the process is devoid of universally accepted safeguards, the government clashing with the judges and the lawyers of Sri Lanka is inevitable. It is most likely that many judges, lawyers and the members of the civil society will be arrested or otherwise their rights tampered with by the government.

Under these circumstances it is only an extraordinary intervention through your high office that could weigh upon the government, to persuade the government to withdraw from the disastrous collision course it has embarked upon against the judiciary in Sri Lanka.  If this fails, Sri Lanka will sink under a dictatorship and how long that will last is hard to predict. Condemning this event and the damage done after it has taken place will be of little practical use to the people of Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka has been undergoing many political catastrophes since the past several decades, and the United Nations is blamed for its inability to make timely interventions to prevent such situations. We firmly hope that the present catastrophe would not have the same fate and that your office would use its mandate and the capacities that is available to your high office to make a decisive intervention on this occasion.

Sincerely

Bijo Francis

(Interim) Executive Director

ALRC

Annexe:

1. Judgment of the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka

For a complete dossier concerning the impeachment kindly see: www.humanrights.asia/resources/books/the-impeachment-motion-against-shirani-bandaranayake

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Latest comments

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    All CHOG must also be appraised of this situation as well as the US, EU, Japan and Govt of India.

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    Sorry to say this but you have missed out one very important factor which is the 2/3 majority in the Parliament is mainly made of the Opposition MPs bought over by the present regime. In fact, the Parliament doesn’t represent the majority consent of the voters as there had been so many malpractices, intimidations, riggings, stuffing of ballot boxes, thuggery, etc. etc. and not forgetting the “computer jilmarts”. If a fair and free election is held, then the result would be definitely the other way round. I think, as Sri Lanka is a Member State of the UN, future elections should be conducted by the UN and not by the corrupted Sri Lankans. Also, if the impeachment continues, the symbol of JUSTICIA in Sri Lanka will be changed to a thug holding the weighing scale with onions (Sathosa) on one side and money showing the huge commissions/extortions on the other side and also wearing the “Kurakkan Satakaya” around the neck and on the other hand holding a pistol with live bullets and also trampling “citizens Banda/Singhe/Silva/Ratnam/Mohamed/Schokman” with both legs. Sri Lanka will be worse than South Africa during Apartheid.

    • 0
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      Rightly said.

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      Yeh! me too! Excellent comment by Ronny! It sums up the situation. I would like to suggest to Bijo to write again to Ban explaining this 2/3rd majority myth because otherwise Bank will assume the regime has the backing of the people. Please do it without fail!

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      Including Rani and Premadasa have been purchased.

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    Ronny: Your new symbol of JUSTICIA in Sri Lanka “A thug holding the weighing scale with onions (Sathosa) on one side and money showing the huge commissions/extortions on the other side…” fits very well with Mervin Silva. He started as a Weighing man (Bodu Kiranna)in a Sathosa (Co-operative) getting in through Mahinda, then influencing Anura and then Mrs. B. and you go on again “…and on the other hand holding a pistol with live bullets…” Does anybody need a better description to know who this new symbol of Justicia would be.

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    Thank you to ALRC & if AHRC is engaged in this effort to them as well. However, I’m not sure in my humble opinion, referring to the 1st jan 2013 SC judgement and giving weblink, is the proper way to move UNSG and UNHRC etc; in an emergency such as this.

    I hope ALRC & AHRC are familiar and has proper contacts with these huge bureaucratic/diplomatic mazes to get in and get out with the expected response, in time.

    And the letter itself is a weak document. It doesn’t spell in clear terms what real and extremely urgent dangers are faced by the judiciary and CJ as a whole ( to tell UNSG govt. will clash with judges and lawyers is inevitable, is that enough to say this is gravely urgent?)

    It must have CJ’s counsels submission’s on 3rd Jan to C of A as CJ has to fight like any other ordinary citizen and that’s her only defense within SL!!!!! and is that comparable to any CJ’s position within any UN member country ????

    And her counsel urged CofA to take up the case on 3rd and now fixed for 7th before 8th jan

    aren’t these the real facts to be presented ?

    otherwise it’s naive to expect UNSG to even issue a communique

    and who are the other key players ALRC will move to force the regime not to proceed with the grave damage they are rushing to commit to this country?

    I firmly think only international action will stop this, there is no one who can bring the regime to its senses and as ALRC itself says, the regime knows by appointing new pliant CJ they can make everything look according to the book.
    Then everything will be too late, and UN will have another Petrie mea culpa report.

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    And this is supposed to be a very formal and factual communication:

    is this correct ?
    According to the announcements made by the government, on 8 January the President will address the parliament on the report made by a Parliamentary Select Committee constituted by the government to impeach the Chief Justice. It is this process that the Supreme Court has declared invalid and as illegal and is against the fabric of the constitution. However, the government has announced that subsequent to the President’s address to the parliament, there will be two days’ of debate after which the issue of impeachment will be voted in the parliament. “

    isn’t the formality going as follows?
    “first the debate and then the (foregone) vote by the Parliament. it is submitted to president and then he decides and in an address to the parliament president informs his decision”

    i hope these minor hiccups in the letter won’t undermine the huge and urgent purpose of ALRC effort and goal

  • 0
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    Why is the “human rights campaigner”Basil Fernando hiding behind another BF?

    BF stands for some interesting description we cant reveal here!

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    Keep writing Bijjo.

    One day Ban Ki-moon might decide to read it and give you a multi million dollar UN grant to conduct a review of judicial powers in Sri Lanka.

    Until then, dont give up your day job.

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    Bijjo, Can you also write to the UN about selective reading of the SL constitution by 3 judges or legal thugs?
    These judges made a mockery of the whole independence of the judiciary issue and wend ahead and drop certain word from the constitution to support the CJ?
    I hope govt. bring them to the parliament to answer for their selective amnesia and throw the book at these corrupt judges.

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    Wasting your time Bijo, Ban Ki Moon is a gutless US stooge put in there to follow anglo saxon orders. Sri Lankans must sort out issues among themselves and not run to their ex-colonial masters.

    Both sides of the impeachment issue here have issues. Theoretically the CJ should be above politics and shady dealings but she is implicated and not blameless either.

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    Please correct the Date of the letter 2103 to be 2013

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    MARA’s whole CJ impeachment process is flawed and was geared towards kicking CJ out knowing MARA is involved in all illicit deals which CJ plan to reveal to an Independent Court..

    From the 117 who signed on a blank paper upto Govt.PSC coolies verdict…..everything was pre.planned and manupulated by MR brothers.
    Nobody but the Politicians who ruined our country. They are only peoples Blood sucking leeches and robbing the country…..while burdening the peoples with unbearable taxes.

    Sri Lanka is the highest Rates charged for Both Electricity and Gasolene and domestic Gas in Southeast Asia. But even after charging so much the Ministers say they incur Billion rupees losses annually.

    Surely these uneducated monkeys should be kicked out for good…..and people should claim the parliament.

    CJ never got justice…….through GOVT. PSC THROUGH STANDING ORDER
    THEREFORE IT IS JUSTIFIED FOR CJ TO FIND JUSTICE THROUGH JUDICIARY….AS PER SEC. 78A.

    IT SAYS CJ COULD COME BEFORE JUDICIARY OR STANDING ORDER……..THE JUDICIARY IS WRITTEN FIRST…….AND STANDING ORDER SECOND.
    ————————— ———————-

    THEREFORE THE PARLIAMENT SHOULD FOLLOW FIRST CHOICE WHICH IS JUDICIARY.

    A puppet CJ will fulfill MR’s Dream to sell the country….including the historical swards, rings, coins and battons, artifacts, ancient religious statutes,ornamentals, wood cravings which are been robbed heavily these days to whoever he wants….. with first preference to CHINA, whenever he wants, at what price he wants and he don’t care a cent for it.

    Ever since MARA occupied parliament…..we faced misery and the latest Kelaniya incident is one of them

    Come 11th January MARA plannes to win CJ impeachment with Kangaroo parliament…..and for this he has stopped every Govt. Parliament member from travelling abroad for a week.

    Come 12th Mara is ready to chase CJ by force with armed forces.

    Therefore what actions the Judiciary, Supreme Court, Bar Association, Opposition Parties, Trade Unions, Clergy, Professional Associations plan to take to save CJ and our future justice and democracy………..

    MARA think other than he and his puppet parliament…….the judiciary, SC, Bar association and other opposition members DO NOT HAVE BASLLS.

    THEREFOR IT’S TIME TO SHOW MARA THAT WE HAVE BALLS….AND FIGHT FOR OUR RIGHTS UNTIL WE WIN.

    Please read following:

    1)MR three brothers control 90% of the Budget allocations.

    2)While President handles the Cash Box(Finance Minister) of Sri Lanka….his daily personal budget alone is 20 Million Rupees per Day.

    3)No transparency on Tender precedures, to whom the contract are awarded to and with no Pre.Feasibility studies been carried out before commencing a project…..namely Hambantota Harbour, Airports, stadium, Nelum pokuna, Many roads and other constructions awarded with no informations as to what price and with what commission percentages etc..etc..

    4)Also land sale or leases without any transparency……and the commission percentages etc….

    5)I still do not know the LIMITS AND CAPACITY OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT MINISTER…..AS THE WHOLE SRI LANKAN ECONOMY FALLS UNDER THIS MINISTRY.

    Starting from opening a small grocery store, to a selling of a retail box in super market (Nugegoda bus stand) or a vegetable box (lella) in a day pola…upto Free trade zone, hotels, clubs, apartments, airport, harbours, car parks, malls…etc..etc…all falls under the ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT MINISTER.

    Also if the DIVINEGUMA BILL IS PASSED…..IT WILL BE A “SUPER MEGA ECONOMIC DEV. MINISTER”

    6)Defense secretary became the URBAN DEVELOPMENT MINISTER. Then Ratna Lanka Security service, Hotel Builder, Looking after Colombo Municipalty, Land scaper, In charge of all three defense services, police, prisons, military service for schools and universities etc…etc…

    THEREFORE THE WHOLE SRI LANKAN ECONOMY, ADMINISTRATION AND SOCIAL LIFE IS COMING UNDER THE FOUR RAJAPAKSE BROTHERS.

    THEREFORE CAN YOU EXPLAIN THE POSITIONS THEY ARE IN CHARGE TODAY….AND WHERE THEY ARE PLANNING TO TO TAKE THE COUNTRY.

    Also please see the following discussion ex. CJ Sarath N.Silva had with Dilka at Derana 360 talk show.

    http://www.derana.lk/index.php?route=programs/programs/programdetails&pid=85&vid=5582&page=2

    You could see the rest of the clips if you type page= 1,3,4, etc.

    Just listen to the video clip and analyse yourself ….the president’s mind set.

    Also If you listened to today 360 program Dilka at Derana had with Minister Rajitha Senaratne(Video clip is not out yet)…………You will note what Rajitha say about President’s mind set…..which is come January 12th 2013 after the favourable Parliament Verdict….President plans to use even Buffalo solja……military power to suppress any protests and to take over Judiciary and the Supreme Court by force.

    Therefore my question is what action or what Plans the Justice department, the Bar Association, the Trade Unions, the Clergy, The Professionals, The opposition parties and we people plan to do………

    If anybody could answer will be great.

    Can the International community help us……before people start fleeing in Boats…..and become homeless refugees again……..

    PLEASE DO SOMETHING BEFORE IF YOU CAN TO STOP THIS……AS THIS WILL LEAD TO TOTAL ANARCHY…..AS THERE WILL BE NO WINNERS BUT ONLY LOOSERS.

    Please let me have your views.

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