You are currently browsing the daily archive for December 4, 2012. second issue which my colleagues in the Liberal Party had proposed for discussion last week was that of the independence of the Judiciary. Again, I made it clear that I had no diffidence whatsoever about a statement being issued affirming our commitment to that principle. However I also thought it important that we should stress the need for accountability in the Judiciary as well, and adherence to the law and to norms.

The latter they could set for themselves, but these should be known to the public, and discussion their suitability should not be precluded. With regard to laws, these are made by Parliament. While it should be open to the Judiciary to strike down, in accordance with the constitution, laws that are unconstitutional, and also to recommend changes to laws that they see as counter-productive, they cannot usurp the position of Parliament and go against the clear meaning of laws for their own reasons, however understandable these might be.

This discussion took place on Sunday morning, before news of the attack on the Secretary to the Judicial Services Commission had spread. That clearly demanded a shift in priorities with regard to any statement the party might issue, and I was not surprised to receive a draft that was about condemnation of the attack. That had to be deplored, but what surprised me was the assumption that government was responsible.

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Rajiva Wijesinha

December 2012
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