MS. KANAUL, PLEASE BE INFORMED
Posted on January 1st, 2013

Nihal Sri Ameresekara – Courtesy The Daily News 


Nihal Sri Ameresekere in a letter dated December 20, 2012 to Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers Mrs. Gabriela Knaul states the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) is only an administrative process, enabling the President to remove a Chief Justice, if the Committee’s Report makes an adverse finding and is passed after an address of Parliament.

“A hue and cry has been raised on the matter of natural justice, but, on examination of the Parliamentary Select Committee report, it would be revealed that the facts are otherwise, and that the Chief Justice had been, in fact, afforded adequate time of one month, to respond to matters, which were within her own knowledge,”Ameresekere further points out in his letter to Knaul.


Mrs. Gabriela Knaul
Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
United Nations Office at Geneva
8-14 Avenue de la Paix 1211
Geneva 10
Switzerland.


cc: Ms. Navanethem Pillay
United Nations I-ligh Commissioner for Human Rights
United Nations Office at Geneva
8-14 Avenue de la Paix 1211
Geneva 10
Switzerland


Dr. Ye Feng
Secretary-General
International Association of
Anti-Corruption Authorities
No. 147 Beiheyan Street,
Dongcheng District, Beijing 100726, China.


Dimitri Vlassis
UN Secretary General’s Representative
Chief, Corruption and Economic Crime Branch
Division for Treaty Affairs, UNODC
Vienna International Centre
Wagramerster 5, A-1400, Vienna, Austria.


Dear Mrs. Gabriela Knaul,


Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa

In the context of your previous above-mentioned ‘News Release’, I addressed to you my Letter dated 16th November 2012, attaching copies of the following:

1. My Petition dated 18th October, 2012 to the Supreme Court, whereby I put in issue the very grave and serious matter of ‘perceived judicial bias and disqualification’ on the part of the Chief Justice and two other Justices of the Supreme Court, who in my view had acted without jurisdiction and ultra-vires the Constitution. I cited the Judgment in Appeal in the House of Lords re – Pinochet vide paragraph 13 of my said Petition. l intimated that the response I received was even more appalling, but did not disclose the same in my said Letter.

Hence, I attach hereto my Affidavit dated 11th December, 2012 addressed to the Hon. Speaker of Parliament, inter-alia, setting out the aforesaid responses I received, which are lucidly self-explanatory. Attached to my Affidavit was my further written Submission, which I had tendered, as far back as 9th February 2012, to the Supreme Court on the same matter of ‘perceived judicial bias and disqualification’, on the part of Chief Justice, also setting out other pertinent facts, which however was not entertained, but returned to me by the Supreme Court.

I urge you to cause a close examination and study of the facts contained in my said Affidavit of 11th December, 2012 and my further Written Submission of 9th February 2012, and reach your conclusions thereon, as to whether such conduct could in anywise be condoned and/or ignored?

2. My Letter dated 5th November 2012 to the Attorney General, with attachments thereto, which reveals the conduct on the part of the Supreme Court, vis-a-vis, illegal contracts pertaining to which, citing international authorities, I had sought anti-suit injunctions. As a consequence of such conduct, Sri Lanka faces Claims of around SL Rs. 40 billion (US $ 315 million) – a cognizable sum of money.


Gabriela Knaul

Your aforesaid repeated concerns have been on the Resolution in terms of Article 107 of the Constitution, which reigns supreme, and the Standing Orders made thereunder for the process to impeach the Chief Justice, by 117 law makers of a total of 225, consequent to which, the Hon. Speaker had no option, other than to appoint a Parliamentary Select Committee to investigate into Charges contained in such Resolution.

To allay the controversy caused, as in the famous instance in France of Alfred Dreyfus affair, I attach a Chart depicting the administrative procedure for disciplinary action against judicial and public officers, together with an Article I had caused to be published, and the relevant Articles of the Constitution. I have observed as reported in the media, that Article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights was to be extended. Nevertheless, Judges are accountable to the prevalent Constitution under which they entered upon Office, and must not usurp Parliament’s Legislative function vide – Latimer House Principles; whereas as revealed in my Petition dated 18th October, 2012 forwarded previously the Chief Justice has violated the UN Universal Declaration of Human Right; and had overwritten Article 157 of the Constitution, which she could not!

I attach a scanned copy of the Report of the Parliamentary Select Committee, without the recorded proceedings of, the list of documents examined by and the oral submissions made before, the said Committee, the contents of which are self-explanatory. The Parliamentary Select Committee is only an administrative process, enabling the President of the Republic to remove a Chief Justice, if the Committee’s Report makes an adverse finding and is passed after an Address of Parliament. I myself have appeared before Parliamentary Standing Committees, which are fact finding Committees, not exercising any judicial power, which I believe is as the same as in the House of Commons and Lords in the UK.

The fact disclosed, that the Opposition Members of the Parliamentary Select Committee, after having seen the evidence, had ‘walked out’, without participating and writing a dissenting Report, with justifiable reasoning only reinforces the findings.


Nihal Sri Ameresekere

A hue and cry has been raised on the matter of natural justice, which perhaps triggered your concerns. On an examination of the attached Report of the Parliamentary Select Committee, it would be revealed that the facts are otherwise, and that the Chief Justice had been, in fact, afforded adequate time of one month, to respond to matters, which were within her own knowledge. Please do compare this with the contents of my aforesaid Affidavit, where the people and I, particularly parties affected, had been knowingly denied natural justice of even having been heard, whilst she and the other Members of the Bench had acted in my view, without jurisdiction, ultra-vires the Constitution, rendering nugatory the tenet that all are equal before the law.

Given below are two strips of scanned newspaper photographs of scenes, (not reproduced in this newspaper due to reasons of space) within the precincts of the Supreme Court, portraying organized protests, including rituals performed, uproars created and the demeanor of the Chief Justice, whilst leaving to attend the Parliamentary Select Committee proceedings, which alone speaks volumes, and brings into issue, as to whether such hullabaloo is acceptable under the Commonwealth Latimer House Principles and the Bangalore Principles of Judicial Conduct adopted by the UN. Would any ordinary litigant have been permitted to so conduct demonstrations in the Supreme Court precincts, to bring about undue pressure to endeavour to stymie and stultify an inquiry?

As disclosed in my previous Letter, my interest is as an Individual Member of the International Association of Anti-Corruption Authorities, committed to promoting and facilitating the implementation of the UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC),which Sri Lanita ratified on 31th March 2004, whilst India ratified same only on 9th May, 2011. l am confident that you would support the same.

In the circumstances revealed in my aforesaid Affidavit dated 11th December, 2012 and further written Submission dated 9″‘ February 2012 attached thereto, the Chief Justice comes within the ambit of Article 52 of the UNCAC, pertaining to category of ‘politically exposed persons’ (PEPs), warranting enhanced scrutiny of their affairs in terms of the UNCAC. Yours truly,

Nihal Sri Ameresekere, F.C.A., F.C.M.A., C.M.A, C.G.M.A., C.F.E.

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