2 December, 2020

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Parliamentary Select Committee Is A Mistrial: Annul The impeachment Report

By Jude Fernando

“Bonaparte throws the whole bourgeois economy into confusion, violates everything that seemed inviolable to the Revolution of 1848, makes some tolerant of revolution and makes others lust for it, and produces anarchy in the name of order, while at the same time stripping the entire state machinery of its halo, profaning it and making it at once loathsome and ridiculous.”   (Karl Marx in Eighteenth Brumaire of Napoleon Bonaparte, 1852)

We need an independent committee or a panel of judges not to evaluate the report of the Parliamentary Select Committee report but to examine whether its conduct is consistent with the law and the accepted national and international norms about impeaching Judges. The impeachment proceedings so far should be declared a mistrial (i.e. a trial rendered invalid through improper and prejudicial errors in the proceedings leading to a leading to the impossibility of an impartial resolution) because in any civilized society a person cannot be tried twice for the exact same offence. It’s called double jeopardy.

Is it a responsible use of immunity by the President not to take responsibility for the conduct of the PSC? Perhaps, the core problem here is executive immunity.

Typical reasons for a mistrial are the lack of jurisdiction a court may have over the case, improper admittance of evidence or testimonies, misconduct of any individual that prevents due process, a hung jury, or disqualification of a juror, and when legal counsels of the litigants find that unfair statements or comments have been made or crucial evidence or testimonies are not admitted or distorted.  It prevents an innocent person from being tried and tried again and again for the same crime until finally being found guilty by a jury or committee that is unprofessional and corrupt.

What the government has done so far is to impeach the constitution, justice system and parliamentary privilege by ignoring the requests by the Supreme Court to postpone the impeachment proceedings until it hears the petititions against it and violating the conventions and procedure of impeachment of judges in any civilized society.   To make matters worse the government appointed an all men committee some of whom insulted the CJ in most sexist language.   Rather than taking responsibility for its misconduct, the government now is trying to find ways out of it, and there is no reason to believe that it changes its original motives that lead to the impeachment in the first place.  Judiciary’s failure to declare the PSC a mistrial is an insult to the country’s justice system, will reinforce the very forces that led to the mistrial and set dangerous precedence for the future.

President’s statement in the Daily Mirror makes it clear that he has his agenda only to satisfy himself: “I have only to answer my conscience because at the end of the day, I have to be satisfied with the outcome of this report; I have to be satisfied that I have done by job properly. The instructions to appoint a further committee to look into this are my instructions. They aren’t found in a paper or book nor are there a law to it but I will do it in order to satisfy myself.” (12/12).  Is it a responsible use of immunity by the President not to take responsibility for the conduct of the PSC? Perhaps, the core problem here is executive immunity. I think government was irked by CJ’s decision on Divinaguma Bill because the hidden aim of the Bill was to overcome the limitations imposed by the 13th Amendment on the concentration of power in the hands of the few who currently control the central government.

In other occasions, President’s attempt to maintain his innocence of the impeachment has several implications.   This First, President’s claim for innocence of the impeachment runs counter to numerous media reports about the Presidents active involvement in expediting the final report of the impeachment proceedings.  Second, he absolutely has no control over what the 117 ministers who signed the motion, hence he has lost control over the Party.  Thirdly, he has no proper legal counsel to handle delicate issues such as the impeachment.  If these implications are true then one cannot expect that the President has the capability or legitimacy to appoint a credible committee re-try the CJ.  It is not fair to let CJ go through another trial to compensate for the misadventures of the President and his legal counselors.

The impeachment of CJ is not simply about her misconduct, but government attempts to discipline the judiciary to function according to the government agenda.  It needs a judiciary that is obedient and predictable and at the same time to provide legal legitimacy for its agendas.  It also raises questions about responsible use of immunity by the executive President.  Giving into government’s attempts to re-start the impeachment is to miss an opportunity to place checks and balances on a country that is rapidly descending into lawlessness, anarchy, disorder, and international isolation.

In fact the appointment of another committee and Panel of judges proposed by is so called Leftist allies may very well be a tack it to distract the protestors and the international pressure. Because this government has learned the benefits of procrastination of its responsibility particularly when it comes to issues that draw international pressure.

CJ should be honored because she willingly participated in the impeachment hearings and had the courage to leave the hearing when the committee lacked civility and professionalism.  And her verdicts in cases against the government demonstrate her professional conduct was not influenced by the government appointing her husband as the Chairman of the National Savings Bank and the fact that she was appointed by the President.

Perhaps, the misadventure of CJ’s impeachment could initiate the long waited spring in Sri Lanka, provided the concerned citizens moved out of the Lipton Circus to the villages and built a mass movement against anti-democratic forces.

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    A charade and a mistrial conducted by ignorant people who think they know everything and can do anything.

    They are not used to acting within the ambit of the laws of the land which they subvert and ignore in the normal course of their activities. They are in the habit of giving orders and treating others as their minions and servants. If anyone opposes they are summarily dealt with by hook or by crook.

    In this instance they did what they normally do, which is to take the law into their own hands and get rid of an impediment in their path. Fortunately for the country they chose the wrong party to deal with, the guardians of the law and constitution and the temples of justice. Now they should know where they actually stand. Lawmakers who do not know the law or do not obey the law should not be tolerated in the legislature.

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      Time has come to turn the tables and IMPEACH the UNEDUCATED AND UNCULTURED CRIMINAL, MAHINDA RAJAPAKSE and his brothers for misconduct and bringing disrepute to the judiciary and the legislature and the executive office by corruption, law breaking, denial of natural justice and due process by running a Kangaroo Court in the guise of a parliamentary select committee (PSC) to impeach the Chief Justice.

      The Rajapassa brothers have brought great disrepute to the organs of the State, the country and the sovereign people of Sri Lanka. They are a NATIONAL DISGRACE and the solution is impeachment!

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    Nice work Jude! The upside down – Rajapassa – has put his foot in his mouth and its not coming out any time soon! The Dictator has to be held accountable for running a Kangaroo Court to impeach the first WOMAN Chief Justice, insulting and humiliating her and bringing disrepute to the legislature, the judiciary, and collectively the SOVEREIGN people of Sri Lanka.
    MAHINDA RAJAPAKSA IS A NATIONAL DISGRACE, A CROOK AND A CRIMINAL WHO LACKS A HIGHER SENSIBILITY. HE MUST BE IMPEACHED SOONER OR LATER. HE CANNOT DESTROY INSTITUTIONS AND PEOPLE WITHOUT BEING HELD ACCOUNTABLE BY THE PEOPLE, THE JUDICIARY AND THE LEGISLATIVE.
    This story has a lot more playing to do and play to get. By the time it is finished the Rajapassa Brothers will be hung, drawn and quartered by a citizenry tired of their lies and greed for power and wealth stolen from the people and land..
    The impunity and imunity

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    The photograph depicts that our Dictator Gone Mad is looking at something very unusual!!

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      Mike take no notice, as he had this weakness of looking under skirts from the small days.

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        Why was that RW as an opposition leader unable to avoid the unconstitutional act being carried out ?

        Why were the usually violent JVPers unable to go against that ?

        Why is that RW as an Opposition leader deaf since then ?

        Is it true that RW is also sitting on Lanken Mugabe ^s bench and that is the reason why he has been unable to react as the nation expects him to do so ?

        You always have brought somewhat constructive arguments, it would be nice if you could add some to the above questions – thanks.

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        perhaps anti – lanken Mugabe are significantly much less though the majority of them are seen on CT. I BELIEVE COMMENTATORS to CT represent not even 5% of the literate lankens.

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    Anybody with Grade three knowledge know that this impeachment from beginning to end was a pure drama instigated by nobody but the President Mahinda Rajapakse.

    The whole script was written and executed no body else but President using his stacked up files and ‘yes sir’ paid parliament actors. Also the Govt. PSC seven were also authorized by president using his brother and Speaker Chamal Rajapakse.

    For the good time of all the Country loving patriots and the strong headed Madam CJ, the whole drama plan is revealing to public and world now, and we must protect our liberty and rights without giving into total dictatorship.

    This is the only opportunity citizens have to undress this dangerous culprit and his golayas and for that we all should help CJ to achieve both ours and her justice, and to safeguard liberty and peace.

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    It’s actually a nice and useful piece of info. I’m happy that you simply shared this useful information with us. Please stay us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.

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    Why the lanken Lawyers collective and the related authorities failed to go on protest in such a contra- constitutional step – is the question that I keep asking even today.

    Why is that that easy for LANKEN Mugabe to implement whatever he thinks is just right just for their benefits ?

    Why all senior politicians and highly educated professional stay calm and quiet as if they are deaf not going for country wide protests until today if the impact of unconstitutional will definitely bring the country lawlessness dictatorship ?

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