Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU) representative Mark Trowell who monitored the legal cases against former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka has noted in his report that the Attorney General did not provide him with material from the prosecution despite repeated assurances.
The IPU Human Rights Committee decided to send its observer to report on the judicial proceedings against Mr. Fonseka and a range of other matters relevant to the process that convicted him under military law. Accordingly Mr. Trowell, an Australian parliamentarian, visited Sri Lanka between June 6 and 11, 2011 for this purpose.
He, in his report handed over to the IPU, said that Mr. Fonseka’s lawyers were helpful in providing court documents and other relevant materials. However, he said that the Attorney General did not provide him with the necessary documents for reporting on the matter even after the lapse of three months for his visit.
Also, he noted that Deputy Solicitor General Farzana Jameel who was the Deputy Solicitor General at that time provided him with some helpful documents regarding the case on the loss of the parliamentary seat of Mr. Fonseka.
“Nevertheless, I have done my best to write an impartial report with limited material provided by the prosecution,” he said.
Referring to the conditions in which Mr. Fonseka stays in prison, the IPU representative said in his report that though the overall living conditions are adequate, all these improvements had been brought about by court proceedings upon application by Mr. Fonseka’s lawyers.
“It is apparent that some efforts have been made to properly accommodate him. However, it was noted that all the improvements made to his accommodation had been brought about by court order upon the application of Mr. Fonseka’s lawyers and not upon the initiative of the prison authorities,” he said.
However, Mr. Mohan Peiris who was the Attoreny General at that time, declined to comment on Mr. Trowell’s remarks.
“I have not seen the report,” he said. (Kelum Bandara)