SL Bar Association must critically evaluate ‘Rule of Law’ of USA and the West
Posted on January 24th, 2014

Shenali D Waduge

It was recently announced that the Sri Lanka Bar Association had signed a MOU with the USA Government to promote ‘Rule of Law’. The announcement immediately leads us to wonder exactly what type of rule of law does the US intend to promote in Sri Lanka and whether Sri Lanka’s legal fraternity are ignorant of the rules of law that the US ignores? As learned men and respected members of Sri Lankan society it behoves the Bar Association to set an example for all that justice and equality upholds. Yet, in entering into a MOU with a nation from whom Sri Lanka has nothing to learn in terms of ‘rule of law’ we are only appalled that our legal fraternity wish to even consider the poor examples of war mongering and massive human rights violations committed by the US all over the world. We think it time that the members of the Bar Association realize that their role alongside their qualifications and oath of loyalty is to the National Constitution and country to protect the sovereignty of Sri Lanka and not compromise it.

Exactly what type of Rule of Law does the USA promote?

We are talking about a country that completely ignores international laws specified under the auspices of the UN, a country that invades nations fabricating lies and spreading these lies across the mass media that is virtually monopolised by them. Are we to learn ‘rule of law’ from a country that has legalized ‘strip searches’ even for a minor offence as forgetting one’s driving license? Are we to learn ‘rule of law’ from a country that drafts Resolutions when it drops DU and cluster bombs and orders its troops to ‘shoot at everything that moves’ and apply ‘360 degree rotational fire’?

What ‘rule of law’ are we expecting to learn and imbibe from a country that conducts itself like a rogue nation and big bully in the international arena, that has scant respect for international law and international institutions except to use them as tools to achieve ulterior ends?, that is impervious to world public opinion, that engineers scenarios, that misuses, abuses and manipulates even religion and sends bogus ‘missionaries’ to function as regime change operatives? What rule of law can we learn from a country that funds private organizations to use their local operatives to penetrate deep into societies of nations and brainwash them into going against their own country and leaders so as to build the scenario for regime change and installation of puppet leaders ever ready to compromise on the fundamental interests of their nation? To this immoral exercise knowing through enough of examples of what the USA is capable of doing and has done to nations, are lawyers of Sri Lanka who we believe have the intelligence to understand far more than the rest of us and not dim – witted willing to be deceived by the USA State Dept., CIA and their numerous manifestations in the form of various Asian Aid Agencies and Foundations?

This very nation that has murdered national leaders and plundered nations over the last 100 years or more has even made itself immune from all war crimes when the UN announced in 2002 that it would be exempting US troops from investigations into war crimes by the ICC.

The MOU signed between the Bar Association of Sri Lanka and USAID is to sponsor a program under an initiative titled “Civil Society Initiatives to Support the Rule of Law’.

We are told that the 3 year program would strengthen ties with the US State Bar Association. There is no single State Bar Association in the US ” the different States of the US have their own Bars ” we hope that the SL Bar Association realizes this differentiation.

We hope too that the SL Bar Association and its lawyer members take note of Russia’s closing down of USAID classifying it as an agency working towards regime change and de-stabilization of Russia.

Can ‘Rule of Law’ and trappings of the Police State in USA be reconciled?

United States of America, which proclaims itself the “land of freedom”, has the most dishonest, dangerous and crooked legal system of any developed nation. The corruption of the USA legal system is well-known, but also well-hidden, by the news services of America’s corporate-owned media. US prisons holds over 2million prisoners. More than 1 out of every 150 people in America – are behind bars. USA is now imprisoning about 1 out of every 36 people in its black population. Americans and the American government, continually criticize the legal systems and so-called “political” legal proceedings in other countries yet the proportion of prisoners is 30 times higher in the USA than in China. It is estimated that America has at least 100,000 completely innocent people in jail. Conditions are brutal in USA jails; rape and beatings are common, and there is little help for abused inmates.  Often, foreign citizens have been sentenced to death, while the USA has not even bothered to notify the foreign government that their citizens were arrested. The world press has documented clear violations of human and legal rights by America in its overseas jails, such as the infamous situations in Guantanamo and occupied Iraq and Afghanistan, and the even more secret network of prisons in places like Diego Garcia or on board American ships.

America will play the song about “just a few bad apples in the barrel” whenever an abuse scandal gets exposed, either domestically or abroad, but the cover-up of such abuse is more the routine response.

America’s legal system has become largely a tool of government terror, and of bribery for the rich and the powerful. America’s lawyers are controlled by the judges, and don’t really work for you – that’s why they sell you out to the government, or to the big companies that pay bribes. American lawyers are directly under the thumb of the judges and the government, and must submit to the culture of bribery and perversion of justice, or else face terrifying ordeals. Lawyers who try to fight the system can find themselves not only dis-barred, but also criminally charged and jailed, and no other lawyer will help them.

America’s 1million lawyers are all subservient to the judges in a culture of bribery and fraud and miscarriage of justice. Lawyers have to make the judge happy, and the judge needs to make the Government happy and the Government has to make the corporates happy ” that is how America runs.

Is this the rule of law that the SL Bar Association hopes to learn via USAID and entrench in Sri Lanka?

It was in 2001 that the Transparency International survey declared Sri Lanka’s judiciary and police one of the most corrupt in South Asia with 100% respondents claiming that they had to pay bribes to the judiciary. No amount of laws, legislations, bills or what not can change a system of culture where all practitioners and enforcers including the public are corrupt or indulge in some form of corruption. An apex body such as the Bar Association made its own serious blunder a few years back in electing a card carrying politician cum Member of Parliament (MP) as its President. When an ‘independent’ Bar Association elects a MP cum Politician as its President where is the ‘independence’ that the public are entitled to expect from a leading professional organization?

Conflicts of interest when MPs appear as Counsel in Courts of law

How moral and ethical is it when a Politician President of the Bar Association takes money from both his ‘client’ and a salary from the Public Purse in his alter ego as Member of Parliament ? Was it not because of this key fact that this politician as former President of BASL represented a high profile client who had swindled thousands of people, thirty of whom had even committed suicide to date while also taking a salary from the Public and enjoying perks and privileges as a MP all paid for by the citizens of Sri Lanka while charging exorbitant fees from this private client to ensure he is not brought to justice for swindling the public and does not go behind bars for the crimes he had committed (Golden Key case). When anyone is serving as a Member of Parliament his or her primary duty, lawyer or no lawyer, is to serve the interests of the larger public and not the private interests of wealthy crooked clients, particularly when there is a conflict of interests between the two?

What we saw in the recent past was a flagrant violation of this fundamental ethical principle that binds all members of parliament, by this very MP cum lawyer who now without any qualms of conscience tries to embarrass the Govt. of Sri Lanka on Commonwealth (Latimer House) Principles on good governance, the accountability of and the relationship between the three branches of Government.

So what was the rule of law that the Sri Lanka Bar Association and its member lawyers upholding at that time when they watched the former President function as both MP and lawyer in a clear case of conflict of interest, having politicized the Bar Association to its very depths through his partisan politics? This was exactly what happened in Italy when the former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s attorneys were members of parliament and were making laws to protect the Premier.

If the Bar Association is truly concerned about the rule of law what they should do as a first step is to bring forward a motion in the Bar Association that no Member of Parliament should practice law or defend clients in court room because their capacity to influence the Administration of Justice, Judges and even Parliament to subvert the course of justice is exceedingly high. They are not on a level playing field with other fellow lawyers that lack clout and political influence.  He can either practice law or remain as a MP. But not both. These Rules restricting MPs from practicing law are in force in the Philippines, Australia, and several other Commonwealth countries based on very good public policy reasons.

Malpractice on entry to the Law College

The legal profession of Sri Lanka was also in the news in the malpractice following the results of the law college entrance exam where mischief prevailed to enable an unprecedented number of a minority community to secure top slots and gain over 100 seats to enter the law college. Apart from the public discontent and aggrieved students protesting neither the then President of the Bar Association or the membership made a single statement in this regard nor even demanded an independent inquiry or suspension of admissions. Naturally the public came to the conclusion that the Bar Association President kept mum because the issue dealt with a minority race and both he and the party that he was representing in Parliament relied on minority votes for their political survival.

In the same vein when the Minister of Justice and lawyer himself is the head of a mono-ethnic political party representing solely the interests of one religion that has made the majority public to question whether that is the reason why the Animal Welfare Bill and the Anti-Conversion Bill remain virtually frozen despite their huge appeal to the vast majority of the people of this country.

In the Philippines Section 14, Article VI of its Constitution states that ‘no Senator or Member of the House of Representatives may personally appear as a counsel before any court of justice or before the Electoral Tribunals, or quasi-judicial and other administrative bodies’. It is the right of anyone to stand for office but 11,000 attorneys of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka should by now know the invariable conflicts of interests in electing Members of Parliament (MPs) to head them.

There is also the instance of the revelations of 2 former judges at the AGM of the Judicial Service Association on 22 December 2012 when they declared in public that a man was sentenced to prison simply because the judge did not like the lawyer representing him. So where was the ‘rule of law’ and operation of equity for the man who had been sent to prison for no fault of his? How many other miscarriages of justice does the legal fraternity of Sri Lanka hide?

The ‘independence of the judiciary’ in Sri Lanka does not need foreign oxygen. For independence to prevail it must come within the legal fraternity itself. The Judiciary must function without bias, without malice, without political agendas.

Protecting the Constitution

As learned professionals in whose hands the enforcement of law and justice is said to be upheld, we expect much from the legal profession. Over and above the expectation to uphold every clause of the country’s Constitution, the key expectation of the public from the legal fraternity in Sri Lanka is to ensure the sovereignty of the country and the integrity of the country is kept intact. In this regard we were very disappointed not to see a single statement from the Bar Association President in response to the manner in which the British Prime Minster David Cameron humiliated the country and its President. When a State leader arrives to attend an international event there is diplomatic and State decorum to be followed. These were all set out not by us but by them. The humiliation meted out by David Cameron was in our eyes not against Mahinda Rajapakse ” it was against the President of Sri Lanka and our country. Why was it only the President and the defense secretary speaking on behalf of the entire country while all other officials who had every capacity to speak up simply kept mum?

Patriotic legal profession ” need of the hour

The members of the Sri Lanka Bar Association must ask themselves whether they are working in the interest of this country or some other country. What the country now needs are not lawyers who are swayed by taps on their backs by scheming foreign governments for collaborating on the type of legal system they wish to usher. The lawyers of Sri Lanka and their Associations are bound to use their legal skills to protect the sovereignty and integrity of the nation and uphold a rule of law that is home grown and has roots in our own pre-colonial legal system. We must strive to be proud of the jurisprudence and legal systems established by our own ancestors and not by somebody else’s grandfathers. This is the challenge facing Sri Lanka’s legal profession today as we move into the Asian era in this 21st century.


22 Responses to “SL Bar Association must critically evaluate ‘Rule of Law’ of USA and the West”

  1. Lorenzo Says:

    On UNHRC. SL should JOIN in a group with these POPULAR countries elected THIS YEAR to the UNHRC. Look at their votes (from UN countries). That shows WHO is POPULAR (most support from the world). If we JOIN them we can make use of their SAY to get through this UNHRC nonsense.

    Africa (4 seats)

    193 votes, 0 invalid, 1 abstention

    South Africa 169
    Algeria 164
    Morocco 163
    Namibia 150

    South Sudan 89
    Tunisia 2

    Asia (4 seats)

    193 votes, 0 invalid, 1 abstention

    Vietnam 184
    China 176
    Maldives 164
    Saudi Arabia 140

    Jordan 16
    Iran 1
    Singapore 1
    Thailand 1

    East Europe (2 seats)

    193 votes, 2 abstentions

    Macedonia 177
    Russia 176

    Slovakia 1
    Latvia 1

    Grulac (2 seats)

    193 votes, 0 abstentions

    Cuba 148
    Mexico 135

    Uruguay 93

    WEOG (2 seats) These jokers are unlikely to help us.

    193 votes, 1 invalid, 14 abstentions

    France: 174
    UK: 171

    Andorra 1
    Greece 1
    Luxembourg 1
    Portugal 1
    San Marino 1

  2. Nanda Says:

    Very important message.

    “Malpractice on entry to the Law College
    The legal profession of Sri Lanka was also in the news in the malpractice following the results of the law college entrance exam where mischief prevailed to enable an unprecedented number of a minority community to secure top slots and gain over 100 seats to enter the law college.”


    In the early seventies you enter Law College with passing O/L.
    Bar association currnet chairman FAILED all 4 AL maths stream sublects and entered using O/L results.
    After passing out, he quickly becase a PC under JR government because his borther worked for Lalith Athulathmudali.
    Based on that Noble Metrit he became youngest Chairman of a government corporation.
    Thus only serves his current MASTER, Ruinil the betrayer of the motherland.
    He has no brain to understand Law, apply it justly or anything.
    He has no brain to understand this writing.

    IF there was no LOW COLLEGE this monster would have been a simple politicca like Dr. Mervyn Silva. He is no better than him.

  3. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    What the article states about the US is not only factual but is true in content and manner. But this has depiction of American double standards or what I would term “The Schizophrenic mindset of the US” has deep roots in her rather short history. It is in this context one would understand the two faced culture of the US

    In her short 400 years (and I am being generous by going back to the days of the arrival of the firs pilgrims) the “Christian” Europeans effectively wiped out the native Americans in the same manner they did of the American Buffalo that in it’s heyday whose numbers were so large that they would cover the ground of an entire state (again I am being generous for usually it is stated the number would encompass several states). The early Christian Europeans far surpassed the efficiency of Nazi Germany in the act of extermination, and all the while holding the words of the Bible close to them. Yet Jesus Christ never stated “Go forth and destroy thy brother till none is left”, but that is exactly what they did.

    One would assume that alone is sufficient a shameful story of any nation as in the case of Australia or Canada. But it did not end there. While the founding Fathers were writing the most illuminating documents on the values of the rights of a citizen emblazoned in the Declaration of Independence, The articles of Confederation and culminating in the Constitution slavery was alive and well. This was the “age of enlightenment” sweeping across the European continent where they too were in the early stages of forming their Colonial empires. Again these are not what the American Christian hears during mass every Sunday of the words of Christ “Love thy brother as you love yourself” was reserved for a select few. The wisdom of Moses liberating the Jews from Egypt was only a pious sermon stated during mass and at home during prayers. But what was really happening was the full fledged rape, plunder and enslavement of millions of Africans who were taken from their villages, put on ships in shackles and shipped to the US as property. Yes that is right as PROPERTY, equal to a piece of furniture. Countless thousands died on their miserable journey to the US and were simply dumped into the ocean.

    What makes this act so extraordinarily vicious is that these Africans were then converted to Christianity before being auctioned off into slavery. Christ never stated “go forth and enslave thy neighbor after you tech him my word” by that is exactly what took place. From the 17th to the 19th century and before the Industrial revolution was to take place in Britain where she alone now controlled a good deal of the world, plundering the nations of their heritage, wealth and resources in a manner far greater than the rape of Europe by Nazi Germany. So what we have in the development of the short history of the US is the absurd aspect of Christians enslaving other Christians and considering the latter nothing more than property. This went against the very doctrines of the founding Fathers and the Bible. By now this twisted mentality alone should be sufficient for any historian to try to bury it under the nearest rug but oh no it goes on.

    As historians often like to point that the American civil war was about the emancipation of the African slave. It was far from that. It was firmly based on state rights verses government intrusion enshrined in the 10th amendment of the Constitution. During the four year civil war President Abraham Lincoln once stated. “I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be “the Union as it was.
    ” If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that”

    The paramount reason for the civil war was to save the Union and not to free the slaves. That is why President Lincoln ordered his troops to attack fort Sumter and begin a civil war that caused the lives of 650 thousand soldiers and another 400 thousand civilian lives. Even when the Confederate was defeated, the Union saved and the slaves liberated they still could not vote… and the twisted horror that shaped the modern culture of America continues.

    Surpassing in deliberate malice Segregation was born, ‘Equal but separate” was the term but it was not equal and very separate. The effects of the age of slavery was partially rectified after Rev Martin Luther King Jr. adopting the ways of the Mahatma defeated segregation with his famous speech “I have a dream” and the enactment of the Bill of rights. By now one would assume the problem has been finally solved and the black population has achieved equality alongside the white population … not yet.

    The US government in its “generosity” created special places for the poor blacks pouring into the northern states, to live. They were and still are called Ghettos or Projects. They undid everything that Rev. Martin Luther Jr. fought for. The black family ceased to exist. Since a woman (not a couple) was rewarded more money if she had more children the role of the father became irrelevant. Black women started having children from any man regardless of the institution of marriage. These government programs degenerated into open air prisons where no one outside of the projects dare even enter. The degeneration of the black community continues to this very day and into the 21st century where black on black murder is so massive it does not even make it into the news. Drugs, disease, broken families, abortion, gangs have ripped across the black population creating more criminals, addicts, and mentally unstable people than ever before.One side note: this effect of marginalizing the blacks was not the first time for that was also done to the Native Americans who live on their own reservations but are addicted to alcohol, are not part of the mainstream and in reality there is hardly a pure native American to be found. for all practical purposes they are a dead race.

    If one is to see this history in the context of modern day politics domestically or internationally the pattern of double standards, the use of power, and the arrogance that goes with it has not changed. The same mentality that at the same time wrote some of the greatest documents with one hand while enslaving a race and whipping out another has not changed and most likely will not change.

    Compare this to the 3 thousand written history of Sri Lanka where slavery, segregation, Ghettos were never part of the culture, where the Buddhist ethos treated man and beast with dignity is as alien to the American mindset and as removed as the Crab Nebula galaxy to our own Milky way. The problem with the modern Sri Lankan culture is that it still permeates the rot of the Colonial age.

  4. Nanda Says:

    US government is working against its own “constitution” for a log time now.
    There is no “Rule of Law” without the government following it’s own constitution.

    “Rev. Martin Luther Jr” is a bandit installed by Jews.

    We must have our own bandit Revs to counter Kassipu Geobbles Joe.

  5. douglas Says:

    Sri Lanka Bar Association signing that MOU with US itself proves that the whole of their “Legal Professionalism” is questionable and incompetent. For long we had “GENTLEMEN” (including women) in the Legal Profession encompassing the whole of the legal and the judiciary. But when the politicians who are not GENTLEMEN entered the Legislature, that SANCTITY started eroding at an alarming rate. Today we are at the lowest ebb of that sanctity and I wonder whether there is anything to be called “holy” in the management and development of the system.

    As Sonali points out, it is time for the members of the Legal Profession to make a “Self Assessment” and question themselves how fitting they are to carrying on with the “holiest of the holy” functions in developing and maintaining the legal and the judiciary of the country. They must understand that it is the “Human Resource” that propels or disintegrate any system and the present state of that degeneration is directly attributable to the people who manage it. One example: An ex Chief Justice says “if I did not give that judgement in favor of this person, he would never have become the President”. That is enough to explain how a “holy” system has been “disgraced”by no lesser person than the Chief of Judges. In this instance, I am not engage in discussing that “Judgement” but my concern is the most disgraceful and unethical behavior of making an unwarranted statement of his own decision. Therefore my firm belief is that if any GENTLEMEN of the Legal Fraternity even after retirement must be capable of maintaining his or her dignity and decorum. If not ,all his/her decisions and behavior will be subjected to “doubt” and will be questionable. Another instance of “Dashing” coconuts in the premises of the courts when the then CJ was leaving to attend the PSC was an indication to what “degrading” levels these members of the Legal Fraternity have fallen.

    So to make a long story short, the members of the legal community belonging to any “Bar” or “Collective” must first of all get engaged in a very thorough “SELF ASSESSMENT” and question how fitting they are to be called “A Guardian” of the Constitution and the Legal System of the country. If you do that and if you are honorable to yourself, that will automatically teach you to “UPHOLD THE RULE OF LAW”. In religious terms , it is, “SAMMA DITTHI”. Why US help, when we have OUR OWN at home?

  6. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    Second comment:
    One issue of US history that is pertinent to post Civil war Sri Lanka is the Reconstruction era which took place immediately after the end of the US civil war. Northerners known as “carpetbaggers” descended on the conquered Confederate states. To quote: “The term referred to the observation that these newcomers tended to carry “carpet bags,” a common form of luggage at the time (sturdy and made from used carpet). It was used as a derogatory term, suggesting opportunism and exploitation by the outsiders. Together with Republicans, they are said to have politically manipulated and controlled former Confederate states for varying periods for their own financial and power gains. In sum, carpetbaggers were seen as insidious Northern outsiders with questionable objectives meddling in local politics, buying up plantations at fire-sale prices and taking advantage of Southerners.”

    Unlike post civil war Sri Lanka the defeated southern states of the US were exposed to even more atrocities. It is not for the US to pass judgement on other nations after they have emerged from their own civil wars when the US record is so abysmal even on this issue.

  7. Fran Diaz Says:

    If the Bar Association (BA) of Lanka can sign MoUs with foreign governments without authorization from the Lanka Parliament, then the rules governing the Bar Association are LAX. The BA becomes an independent governing body, not answerable to the People of Lanka.

    Parliament must close this gap and revoke all MoUs signed independently by the BA. The BA is behaving like the ultimate Legal authority of Lanka.

    Does our Bar Association need funds from any outside sources to promote the ‘Rule of Law’ ? Isn’t it their DUTY TO THE COUNTRY OF LANKA TO PROMOTE THE “RULE OF LAW ” without any prompting through funding ?

  8. Fran Diaz Says:

    To the best of my knowledge of matters in the USA, with a wider look at human rights in a historical sense :

    We all know that the civil war of USA released Black folk from Slavery. The Southern states of USA (in this instance the South erred because of Slavery) were flourishing because of virtually wage free Slavery brought in mainly by the British. Most of the massive enterprises of USA such as the automobile industry (Detroit), to the best of my knowledge, are now in the cooler climes/cold North.

    Most of the sub-tropical Fruits & vegetables are grown in the Southern areas, Florida & Southern California mainly. Vegetables & fruits are also brought into US from Mexico and even Canada. There are some 7 Million Mexicans identified as illegal migrants in US. They have come in mainly as laborers to work in the farms – same as poor, illiterate and low caste Tamil folk from Tamil Nadu, brought into/coming into Lanka for over a century. Sri Lanka has a Labor problem and has to mechanize & modernize the Labor sector, particularly the tea sector to use tea plucking machines as done in China, S. Africa & parts of India too.

    All illegal migrants ought to be deported or else it will probably weaken Sri Lanka further. Note the recent Rouge land claims in the Amparai area. The SAARC rule of ‘visa on entry’ has to be removed for Lanka, as done in India. If anyone wants to help the poor in the SAARC region, please go to those countries and help them in their own homeland. Any poor folk coming into Lanka as illegal labor will not want to reman as labor for long. They and their children want to get educated (free education in Lanka) and move on up the social ladder. That is why they come in the first place.

    Also, the readers and writers to this forum have to remind the Bar Association that “there no such thing as a free lunch”.

  9. Lorenzo Says:

    Aluthkade Bar signing agreements with USA is nothing new. SL is LEADERLESS and any group can agree with OUTSIDERS on ANYTHING.

    1. Trinco MC signed an agreement with USA for an Americunt Corner.

    2. TN Tamils and NPC Tamils have made 5 resolutions on SL border and now awaits govt. approval of their decisions.

    3. NPC has singed an agreement with USA DIRECTLY for a grant of $10 million for fishing.

    4. USA has its OWN SEPERATE embassy for Jaffna.

    5. Endia has its OWN SEPERATE embassy for Jaffna

    6. Aluthkade BAR signs it OWN SEPERATE AGREEMENT with USA to twist law and order in SL.

    7. Ananthi and Vigneswaran decides where and how many army camps and posts should be there in the north. Govt. does it.

    8. Like during Run-nil’s CFA time, US, UK, Endian, etc. officials hold DIRECT AND SEPERATE TALKS with LTTE (TNA) WITHOUT any participation of the govt.

    9. TNA is officially canvassing AGAINST SL at the UNHRC begging to bring an anti-SL resolution. Of course the govt. cannot stop them!

    10. LTTE mass grave in Mannar sending shockwaves up Kasippu Joseph Goebbels’s rear. Now he wants an international investigation to it to escape his involvement. Govt. will OK it.

  10. Marco Says:

    Shenali the writer as usual was disingenuous in reporting that the SL Bar Association has signed a MOU with the US Govt without mentioning the sponsorship was to foster further linkages between the Sri Lanka Bar and U.S. State Bar Association.
    Fran if you are Shenali belonged to a Professional Vocational Institution, you would realise its common for such Institutions to enter into MOU with reciprocal foreign bodies for the purposes of recognition, training and development and research. The Medical, Accountancy, Engineering and the Legal Professions have been doing it for many years without the interference of the Govt busy bodies.

    These Professional Institutions should remain an INDEPENDENT organisations. We have already been tarnished with the lackadaisical attempt on law and order and the judiciary due to the interference of political henchmen, why do we want the bastions of such Professional Institutions be brushed with the same brush?

    Please dont lecture me on how corrupt the Bar or the Legal system is. I live in Sri Lanka Fran you dont.

    I paid my last respects to Justice Sriskandarajah yesterday, who many believed was a truly independent and wise counsel/judge. I may not have agreed with some of his judgements but he was unshakable in his credibility.
    Doubt very much you will find a SC Judge of that caliber now.

  11. Lorenzo Says:


    FYI, Justice Sriskandarajah was APPOINTED by none other than the President. What a GOOD DECISION it was! Why not say GOOD when something GOOD is done?

  12. Nanda Says:

    I don’t know about Skanda but I know about his goo friend.
    Were you in the same class in the school with the current chairman of the bar association ?
    Do you know whether he is corrupt or not ?
    Please read my previous comment.
    Shitrani Bandaranayaka did not go to LOW school, but she married a Colombian who went to the same school and did not pass a proper exam.
    This is the problem with our Low profession.

  13. Nanda Says:

    “LTTE mass grave in Mannar sending shockwaves up Kasippu Joseph Goebbels’s rear. Now he wants an international investigation to it to escape his involvement. Govt. will OK it.”

    No. Gov will NOkay it. Ranee summoned Ranjee for a Kassipu session.

  14. Fran Diaz Says:

    Below an is an extract from the web on the Independence of the Judiciary (from the Catholic Bishops Conference). The text of the message speaks for itself. Even other legislative bodies of Lanka should be excluded from influencing the interpreting of the Law, says the CBC !
    Like I said before : “there is no such thing as a free lunch”. Any funding to the Bar Association could be interpreted as Undue Influence.

    Catholic Bishops on independence of judiciary and independent Commissions

    Following is an extract from the Pastoral Letter of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Sri Lanka, entitled ‘Towards Reconciliation and Rebuilding of the Nation’.

    In this exercise the independence of the Judiciary should be preserved and defended at all cost. The Judiciary which has the sacred role of interpreting and applying the meaning of a given law should be totally free from interference by the other stake holders of power, the legislature and the executive. The contention that the Legislature is above the Judiciary is seriously flawed and is untenable. It is true that the Legislature draws up or approves laws which enter into the statute books of a country but it is the Judiciary that applies such laws to a given context. And its independence is the guarantor of true justice. The Legislature should not assume the role of both framing the laws and then interpreting them which is an invasion of the role of the judiciary. Besides, no one should be placed above the laws of the country and no immunity from prosecution for anyone should be permitted in the Constitution as that would hinder any citizen from challenging any undemocratic or illegal actions of the executive. The cardinal principle in this matter should be that absolutely no one is above the law. All those who are elected to power are at the service of the people and are firmly bound to follow the laws of the country in an exemplary manner. The legislature should not usurp the role of the judiciary and if the constitution allows for that, such authority should be removed”. etc.

  15. Fran Diaz Says:


    Re the funding by foreign sources that you mention :

    1. Trinco MC signed an agreement with USA for an American Corner : THIS HAS BEEN ANNULLED.

    2. TN Tamils and NPC Tamils have made 5 resolutions on SL border and now awaits govt. approval of their decisions : THIS WAS ARRANGED BY THE GOVTS OF INDIA & SRI LANKA IN CO-OPERATION TO FIND A MUTUALLY SATISFACTORY SOLUTION.

    3. NPC has signed an agreement with USA DIRECTLY for a grant of $10 million for fishing : AGAIN DONE WITH GOVT APPROVAL. ( I haven’t checked the veracity of this agreement).

    There is a big difference between the Bar Association and NPC Fisheries.

  16. Lorenzo Says:


    I have given 10 points and you have countered only 3. So the other 7 remain?

    Agree with 1.

    Disagree with 2 and 3.

    2. But those resolutions were made by them! Not the govts. When did this nonsense start happening? It was ALWAYS the govt. that made decisions until now.

    3. Why did the govt. approve this? This is DISCRIMINATION. We all know USAID = CIA

  17. Nanda Says:

    When some bugger complained Army patrolling Jaffna, why Army responded it is faults ? It is their job to patrol. Why this FEAR ?

  18. Fran Diaz Says:


    There is Decentralisation happening in Lanka. Experiments of this type are happening in the best of democracies. Change has to happen for the better.

    What do you have to say re the Pounds Sterling 2 M given to the NPC by the Cameron govt. for development of the NPC ? This is exclusively for NPC and development of the North. All that whilst the southern taxpayer pays for development of the North which was destroyed by LTTE. Nothing is fair. We have to make lemon aide out of all lemons. Let us just make sure it does not happen again.

    The other points you raise does not involve direct funding.

    Also, this point you state : 6. Aluthkade BAR signs it OWN SEPERATE AGREEMENT with USA to twist law and order in SL. Can you give web site for this news ? Thanks.

  19. Nanda Says:


    All funds MUST come through the government.
    Otherwise Saudi will donate money and build their own cities ( they have done this already).
    US Corner is a mistake.
    All corners are mistakes.

    There is no need for “decentralisation” involving politicians. Decentralisation should be at GA level or some officials who have come up through the proper system.

  20. Fran Diaz Says:


    I agree wholeheartedly with you that ALL funding should come through GoSL and administration done by GAs. It works very
    well for a small country like Lanka.

    To get funds, poorer Democracies agree to various conditions, e.g. World Bank, IMF, to name a few.

    This is indeed a new developments in Lanka.

    I am against the 13-A and all that goes with it. Experiments are forced on Lanka, as you can see. All what is happening is a response to what happened in the past, mostly events with the JVP & LTTE. We are in transition to some other methods of governance ….

  21. Lorenzo Says:


    NO decentralization is needed for ANYTHING to do with FINANCES. SL is a very small country and there is no such things. They are good for Soviet Union, USA, Endia, etc.

    “We are in transition to some other methods of governance”

    Now that is interesting! VERY.

  22. Fran Diaz Says:


    Technically speaking, no change is needed for anything to do with Finances. However, the Financiers from abroad can call the tunes.

    Any number of GAs will suffice for me, rather than give financial freedom to Provinces. One GA per District would be ideal.

    We are in transition, while keeping the bulk of the old methods.

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