Sri Lanka Commission seeks Buddhist Prelates guidance to prepare final report

TamilNet, 3 April 2011

Colombo, Sri Lanka -- Members of Sri Lanka's Prersident appointed Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) had met the Mahanayaka Theras of the Malwatte and Asgiriya Chapters last week to seek guidance before preparing the final report scheduled to be presented by May 15, according to a news report published in English weekly Lakbima on Sunday. The Buddhist prelates exercise a dominant influence on the Sri Lankan regime.

LLRC is in the process of oral submissions made and also analyzing thousands of pages of transcriptions, according to LLRC’s Media Advisor Lakshman Wickremasinghe.

Lakbima news report further quoted LLRC sources stating that in the final report, it is to address the most urgent issues faced by the residents of the North East, the abductions, disappearances and financial aid.

Several civilians have appeared before the LLRC demanding the Rajapaksa's commission to locate the whereabouts of their missing kith and kin. Several journalists were blocked from witnessing the hearings.

Leaders of Sinhala dominated government and other political parties obtain advice from Mahanayake Theras on key issues.

Meanwhile, three prominent Human Rights watchdogs of the West, the International Crisis Group, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, in November 2010 blamed the LLRC of failing to meet basic international standards for independent and impartial inquiries, and for proceeding against a backdrop of SL government's failure to address impunity and continuing human rights abuses.

The Rights groups further pointedly attacked the island's legal system saying, “Sri Lanka’s government and justice system cannot and will not uphold the rule of law and respect basic rights.”

Buddhist prelates who reach the position of Mahanayake Theras of Malwatte and Asgiriya Chapters play a vital role in the thinking of the government in power.