CABINET MINISTERS NOT ABOVE THE LAW
Posted on March 4th, 2016

Dr. Tilak S. Fernando

Dramatic turn of events were exposed in Ceylon Today (3 March) by two young men after giving chase to a black SUV jeep that attempted to escape and run, after hitting two motorcyclists in Welikada, Borella, last Sunday (28), under the headline Eyewitness Reveals Champika in Hit-and Run Drama.

The news story, which has already gone viral, gives two conflicting statements. The two young men, after giving chase to the black jeep that sped away after the accident, swear by their statements stating it was Minister Champika Ranawaka, who spoke to them when he was obstructed in trying to escape, and the other being the Police report which allegedly has changed the name of the driver at the time of the accident! The situation makes it worse by Welikada Police not allowing the petitioners (the young men) to read the report lodged after the accident, the Police officials requesting them to ‘simply sign at the bottom of the report’!

The young men who chased after the jeep insist in their statement that they followed the jeep and blocked it so that the driver had no option but to stop the fleeing vehicle. At that moment they seem to confirm that the driver at the wheel came out stating, “I am the Minister Champika. I admit the fault. Let’s go to the Borella Police”.

People in this country have elected a new administration called Yahapalanaya (Just Government) to ensure that justice prevails by eradicating the ‘evil that existed’! But this incident, no doubt, is a clear-cut indication to prove the Sinhala dictum, ‘Cotte Maaru Kalata Oliwe Riduma nam gihin neha’ (Changing the pillow has not resulted in curing the headache) !

Privilege

 The Thesaurus describes the word ‘Privilege’ as a special entitlement or immunity granted by the State or another authority to a restricted group. Etymologically, a privilege means a private law to a specific individual(s) or special powers held as a consequence of political power or wealth.

In Sri Lanka people have been democratically electing, over a period of years, powerful cliques as VIPs and VVIPs to uplift the whole nation to prosperity with commitment. One may turn a Nelsonian eye to the ineffectiveness or on the performance of those who were elected, but one cannot completely ignore the repugnance felt by society on the gross abuse of power by some rotten eggs in the VVIP mixed bag.

Undertaking the full responsibility to conduct and maintain a yahapalanaya would be an arduous task for President Maithripala Sirisena alone, which requires collective commitment. The representatives were appointed by him and the Prime Minister to this contemporary lot of VIPs perhaps thinking they are ‘well burnt bricks in Sri Lankan political ovens,’ to ensure that ‘the Nation Building’ was properly constructed according to the President’s blueprint.

But the above-mentioned incident goes to show how unpleasant, dreadful and outrageous for a Senior Minister of the Yahapalanaya Cabinet to act in such a disdainful manner by not even stopping the vehicle after knocking down a motorist on a public road and to vanish from the scene. Certainly there are no words in the English language to describe such a tyrannical act, which is against the Sri Lankan Law in the first instance (to hit and run), which the whole country should condemn as an outrageous act.

Motorcyclists and Accidents

It is an accepted fact that motor cyclists are not angels on Sri Lankan roads, but a real nuisance at times when they creep in and out of traffic like cockroaches even taking chances on their own dear lives. But that does not make it a right for anyone (according to the Law of this country) to ‘ hit and run’ allowing the victim to die on the road! This sort of behaviour cannot at any rate be expected from a Senior Member of President Sirisena’s Cabinet.

One could expect irrational behaviour in Sri Lanka when an accident occurs; especially at times the victim dies on the spot. In such instances it has gone on record that onlookers and the public going berserk and attacking the driver, and setting fire to concerned vehicle as well, even if the driver is innocent, but in this instance being the minister a VVIP should have shown more respect and decent behaviour at the scene rather than absconding from the scene especially when confronted by two youths by simply stating – (quoted in print) “I am Minister Champika. I admit the fault. Let’s go to Borella Police”.

Bygone Era

In a bygone era public had seen not only VIP and VVIPs abusing their privileges, but some blue eyed lucky boys in duty free luxury cars and SUV jeeps flying on the roads with an ‘army’ of hell’s angels to protect them and displaying typical road rage, where other road users were virtually thrown into roadside drains; their ‘god given’ powerful hands covered with white gloves ruled the traffic!

However, Sri Lanka today is free from such harassment thanks to a steadfast President who even instructs his chauffer, on seeing pedestrians waiting to cross at Zebra crossings, to stop his vehicle and let the public cross the road safely. At least this senior Cabinet Minister should have taken a leaf out from his Commander’s book in this instance rather than behaving in such a despicable and uncouth manner. If we are to believe that no one is above the law in this country, then this kind of behaviour is indeed a downright breach of regulations.

Attorney General’s version

Former Attorney General, Mohan Peiris, was once quoted as saying: “Being a Parliamentary Minister does not make anyone above the law. They were only called to Parliament to exercise their right to vote during a voting, so that parliamentary affairs could be carried out efficiently. As elected officials, ministers should not abuse the privileges given to them.”

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14 Responses to “CABINET MINISTERS NOT ABOVE THE LAW”

  1. Nimal Says:

    Sorry Tilak,haven’t got the time to read your article but agree with you that politicians should not be above the law. You can see for yourself that in UK,any politican,famous actors and even(now) a famous footballer will spend time in prison, should they break the law.
    Why not be frank enough to write another article that we lost our decent standards since the British left the island and propose all the good you have experienced or noticed in UK,then you will do Sri Lanka a great favour.

  2. NeelaMahaYoda Says:

    චම්පිකගේ අනතුරේ CCTV නොබැලූවේ ඇයි.. තුවාලකරු ICU.. චම්පික නිදැල්ලේ..
    ඇමති චම්පික රණවකගේ රථයේ රාජගිරියේදී ගැටීම නිසා මේ වන විට දැඩි සත්කාර ඒකකයේ ප‍්‍රතිකාර ලබමින් සිටින සංදීප් සම්පත්ගේ රිය අනතුර සම්බන්ධයෙන් නීතිය ක5ියාත්මක වන ආකරය දැඩි සැක සහිත බව ඒකාබද්ද විපක්‍ෂය පවසයි.

    මේ බව සඳහන් කරමින් ඒකාබද්ද විපක්‍ෂය නියෝජනය කරන පාර්ලිමේන්තු මන්ත‍්‍රිවරුන් තිදෙනෙකු විසින් පොලිස්පතිවරයා වෙත යොමු කර ඇති ලිපිය මෙසේය.

    එන්.කේ. ඉලංගකෝන් මහතා
    පොලිස්පති,
    පොලිස් මූළස්ථානය,
    කොළඹ.

    පොලිස්පතිතුමණි,

    සංදීප් සම්පත් මහතා රිය අනතුරකට ලක්කිරීම සම්බන්ධව

    වර්ෂ 2016.02.29 වන දින හෝ ඊට ආසන්න දිනක දී රාජගිරිය සරණ මාවත ආසන්නයේ දී (ජනාධිපති විද්‍යාලය අසල දී) සංදීප් සම්පත් යන අයට මෝටර් රථ අනතුරකට ලක්කර රියදුරු පලාගොස් ඇත. එම අවස්ථාවේ දී තුවාල ලත් සංදීප් සම්පත්ගේ මිත‍්‍රයෙකු හා තවත් පිරිසක් විසින් අදාළ මෝටර් රථය ලූහුබැඳ ගොස් එය නැවැත්වූ අවස්ථාවේ දී, එම රථය පදවන ලද රියදුරා වශයෙන් හඳුනාගෙන ඇත්තේ අමාත්‍ය පාඨලී චම්පික රණවක මහතා බවට මාධ්‍ය වාර්ථා කර තිබුණි. ඒ අනුව මෙම රිය අනතුරට භාජනය වූ සංදීප් සම්පත් යන අය දැනට ජාතික රෝහලේ දැඩි සත්කාර ඒකකයේ ඉතාමත් අසාධ්‍ය තත්ත්වයක, ජීවිතයත් මරණයත් අතර සටනක යෙදෙමින් සිටී. මොහුට රථ වාහන පනතට අනුව මෙම රියදුරු විසින් අනතුරක් වාර්ථා නොකිරීම, නොසැලකිලිමත් ලෙස ධාවනය, අනතුරක් වලක්වා නොගැනීම යටතට ගැනෙන වැදි සිදු කොට ඇති අතර, තවදුරටත් තම මෝටර් රථයේ ගැටුණු තුවාලකරු රෝහලකට ගෙනයාමකින් තොරව පලායාම හේතු කොටගෙන මනුෂ්‍ය සාරධර්මවලට පටහැනිව ද, සදාචාර විරෝධී ලෙස ද කටයුතු කර ඇත.

    තව ද පොලිස් ස්ථානයට ඉදිරිපත් වූ රියදුරු අදාළ අනතුර තමා විසින් සිදු කළ දෙයක් බව දන්වා සිටිය ද, මෙම සිද්ධියට අදාළව මෝටර් රථය පදවාගෙන ගියේ යැයි සැක කරන අමාත්‍ය පාඨලී චම්පික රණවක මහතා වෙනුවට අයෙකු ඉදිරිපත් වී ඇති බව මාධ්‍ය මගින් අනාවරණය කර ඇත. පොලීසිය විසින් ඉතා කඩි මුඩියේ පොලීසිය වෙත ඉදිරිපත් වූ සැකකරු ගරු අධිකරණයට ඉදිරිපත් කළ අතර ඔහු ඇප මත නිදහස් කර ඇත.

    මෙම රිය අනතුර සම්බන්ධයෙන් විධිමත් පරීක්‍ෂණයක් පොලීසිය මගින් සිදු කළේ ද? අදාළ මෝටර් රථය ගමන් කළ මාර්ගයන්හි CCTV දර්ශන පරීක්‍ෂාවට ලක් කළේ ද? මෙම සිද්ධියට අදාළව ප‍්‍රකාශ ලබා දෙන්නන් හට පොලීසිය වෙත ප‍්‍රකාශ ලබා දීමට සාධාරණ අවස්ථාවක් ලබා දුන්නේ ද? යන ප‍්‍රශ්න අප හමුවේ ඇති ගැටළුවලින් කිහිපයකි. යුක්තිය ඉටුකිරීම උදෙසා සත්‍ය ලෙසින් වරදකාරී පුද්ගලයන් නීතිය හමුවට ඉදිරිපත් කිරීමට පොලිසිය සතු ප‍්‍රමුඛ වගකීමක් බව සිහිපත් කරමින්, නීතිය සැමට එක සේ සළකමින් මෙම අනතුරට පත් තරුණයන්ට සාධාරණයක් ඉටු කර දෙන මෙන් ද සමාජයේ නීතියට ඇති විශ්වාසය වැඩි දියුණු වන ආකාරයට වඩා අපක්‍ෂපාතී විධිමත් පරීක්‍ෂණයක් කරන මෙන් ද ඉල්ලා සිටිමි.

    ස්තූතියි

    මෙයට – විශ්වාසී

    ශෙහාන් සේමසිංහ, පා.ම
    කංචන විජේසේකර, පා.ම
    ඞී.වී. චානක, පා.ම

  3. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    THE MINISTER, EMPLOYING A DRIVER TO IMPERSONATE HIM, IS A PERVERSE REPREHENSIBLE ACT BY A MINISTER. HIS RESPONSIBILITY TO THE PEOPLE OF THIS COUNTRY IS THROWN TO THE WINDS. A DOWNRIGHT DISHONEST POLITICIAN. A SADIST.

    HE HAS TOLD THE TWO BOYS (TWO WITNESSES) WHO CHASED AFTER HIM AND STOPPED HIM, THAT HE IS THE MINISTER PATALI, AND REQUESTED THEY ALL GO TOGETHER TO THE BORELLA POLICE, WHEN THE WELIKADE POLICE IS IN JURISDICTION OF THE AREA WHERE THE ACCIDENT TOOK PLACE, THAT IS RAJAGIRIYA. DISHONESTY STARTED FROM THERE, IN DESPERATION TO HIDE. *** HE WAS NOT CONCERNED ABOUT THE TWO BOYS WHO WERE INJURED AND LYING ON THE ROAD AWAITING MEDICAL HELP. A VERY PATHETIC SADISTIC THOUGHT BY A **MINISTER**

    THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT THE POLICE AND THE JUDICIARY HAS TO BE PRISTINE CLEAR IN THEIR FUTURE ACTIONS, ON THIS EPISODE.

    NEVERTHELESS, THIS NEWS WILL GO VIRAL IN THE INTERNATIONAL NEWS, AND CERTAINLY THERE ARE A THOUSAND JUDGES AN JURORS WHO WILL EXPRESS THEIR VERDICTS, TO THE DETRIMENT OF ***THE GOO GOVERNANACE** OF THE PRESIDENT AND HIS PRIME MINISTER, OF THIS BEAUTIFUL SRI LANKA.

    PATALI CHAMPAKA WILL BE THE MINISTER WHO HAS DE-FECATED INTO THE POT OF MILK WHICH THE VOTERS LOOKED FORWARD TO. DISGUSTING. ALL HIS FUTURE ACTIONS WOULD BE ON THE SAME STRAIN, PERIOD.

  4. Christie Says:

    Christie Says:
    March 3rd, 2016 at 5:47 pm
    Look at what Hon Champika say about the law.

    The vehicle he was travelling met with an accident and he did not stop.

    It is human nature and a human obligation to help an injured who ever caused it and how it was caused.

    In almost in all countries it is punishable by law if the occupants did not stop and assist the injured. (Note it is not the case in India and it depends on the caste of the victim).

    The Hon. Minister calls a media circus and accuses all motorcyclists.


    I am the Minister Champika. I admit the fault. Let’s go to the Borella Police”.

    What sort of an animal is he? Police is not a place where ijured are treated. He probably wanted to call Indian Ambulance Service, from Borella Police Station.

  5. jay-ran Says:

    Toda Sri Lankan State is in aVERY SAD SITUATION DUE TO THE UNRULY ATTITUDES OF RANIL WICKREMASINGHE THE BATALANDA MURDERCHAMBERS KILLER OF HUNDREDS OF INNOCENTS.SIRISENA IS NO BETTER,HE HAS BETRAYED THE COUNTRY BY ELIMINATING A DEMOCRATICALLY ELECTED PM-JAYARATNA NO SOONER THIS UNGREATFUL CORRUPTED MAN BECAME PRESIDENT WHERE RANIL HAD NO MANDATE!!!SIRISENA’S ONE BROTHER IS HOLDING THE HIGHEST POST IN SRI LANKA TELECOM AND GOT HIS SALARY INCREASED BY 3 FOLD AND NOW IT IS LEARNET THAT HE IS ROBBING TELECOM CUSTOMERS MONEY-THIS IS YAHAPALANAYA.
    SO CHAMPIKA IS NO DIFFERENT,HE TOO FOLLOWS THE KILLERS!!!LOOK AT THE NEWS ITEM BELOW:
    Police spokesman behind media-driven arrests
    Mar 4 (EN) Sri Lanka’s police spokesman orchestrated the controversial arrest of an army major and his driver so that he could give a sexy sound bite to radio and television networks, a police investigation has revealed. ASP Ruwan Gunasekera ordered the Officer in Charge of the Opanayake police station last month to arrest both the army driver and his passenger following a fatal accident on February 18. more..
    Police spokesman behind media-driven arrests
    Mar 4 (EN) Sri Lanka’s police spokesman orchestrated the controversial arrest of an army major and his driver so that he could give a sexy sound bite to radio and television networks, a police investigation has revealed. ASP Ruwan Gunasekera ordered the Officer in Charge of the Opanayake police station last month to arrest both the army driver and his passenger following a fatal accident on February 18. more..
    This DIRTY CORRUPTED POLICEMAN/LAWYER TRIED TO COVER UP THE KILLING OF A YOUNG MAN AT AMBILIPITIYA BY AN ASP WHO BARGED INTO THE PARTY DEMANDING 2 BOTTLES OF ARRACK AND AFTER A QUAREL THIS ASP THRE THIS YOUNG MAN FROM TOP OF A BUILDING AND HE WAS KILLED.In other instances where civilians are involeved POLICE IMMEDIATELY TAKE ACTION TO ARREST THE SO CALLED WRONG DOERS,BUT IN THIS INCIDENT IT IS LEANT THAT IGP HAS DELAYED ARREST OF THOSE INVILVED IN AMBILIPITIYA EVEN AFTER JUDGE ISSUING AN ARREST WARRENT!!!
    THIS IS YAKAGE “WAIRAPALA” “YAHAPALANAYA”!!!

  6. SA Kumar Says:

    “I am the Minister Champika. I admit the fault. Let’s go to the Borella Police”.- In Mother lanka Ministra or MP drive car/jeep ???

  7. Samanthi Says:

    Mr. S.A. Kumar, yes in Sri Lanka ministers and MPs drive cars in the night when they go on secret missions such as going to see their mistresses. These days it is called “Kotu Paninawa” in Sinhala. A good example is the recent axe attack to a sand businessman in Polonnaruwa.

  8. Christie Says:

    Our Sinhala youth have to learn to stand up to bastards like Champika. They should have given him (Champika) a blood nose and taken him to the nearest medical center and then gone to the police station by themselves or accompanied by a lawyer.

  9. stanley perera Says:

    Daddy long legs is in real trouble. If that B…… did not resign lets call sira and rana to resign. This is the repeat of MR.

  10. NAK Says:

    The two youngsters showed much courage in giving chase and stopping the vehicle that was involved in the accident.

    What does their reluctance to accompany the minister to the police show?

  11. Christie Says:

    “What does their reluctance to accompany the minister to the police show?”

    Champika may have shot dead the two and complained to the police that they tried to kill him or steal the vehicle.

    This is a man who lives off by selling Sinhalese to the Indian Empire.

  12. Dham Says:

    Tilak,

    You said,

    “VVIP should have shown more respect and decent behaviour at the scene rather than absconding from the scene especially when confronted by two youths by simply stating – (quoted in print) “I am Minister Champika. I admit the fault. Let’s go to Borella Police”.

    Please use your glasses and look at the pictures which do not lie.
    How on this earth the minister “should” admit fault ( of the accident) when that motorbike hit the vehicle on the bumper the window near the bumper ?
    I am not a supporter of UNP or any party but I can see this clearly. Only possibility that 4Wheel Drive can be at fault is changing lanes without checking. Even then it is not easy to hit the bumper.

    Very similar incident happened to me 3 years ago in Colombo. I hear a loud bang an it took me few seconds to understand what happened and another few seconds to find a place and stop. By this time my vehicle was roughly 100 meters away. A motorcycle hit my HIACE van at the back. Rider was luckily could stand up and told me his bike had no brakes. He had very minor injuries and I did not call police.

  13. aloy Says:

    Our roads are badly lit at night and are very dangerous to drive at high speed. Obviously the cyclist must have come very fast and hit Champika’s vehicle from behind. Whatever his mission must have been he should have taken the badly injured for medical attention. Someones fate can be changed in seconds. Similar thing happened to ted Kennedy and his chances of becoming the president of US vanished.

  14. Tilak Says:

    Daham

    The article was written only hours after the incident from newspaper headlines. But now as information is unfolding, the Minister had come at rocket speed from a side road without stopping and giving way to the main road traffic and suddenly having seen the motor bikes coming had jammed brakes which caused the motor bike to hit. If he did not stop suddenly or came slowly and stopped and looked at the oncoming traffic, probably the tragedy would not have taken place! But oh no, Sri Lankan ministers think they have descended from heaven so they must fly. Who cares about god damn voter who sent him there, and out of his tax gave him luxury jeeps to run about. According to the law of the country Ministers cannot drive an official vehicle but a driver, that may be why a poor bugger was put forward as a guinea pig ! Will wait for the complete report. Just by being an independent analyser I find it very strange that some politicians are taken into custody without any proof and others are given preferential treatment of getting away with ‘ murder’. Some get served with cups of tea and sent home others are dragged into cells like animals. I simply cannot comprehend the word ‘ yahapalanaya’.

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