SA High Commissioner warns against complacence

21 October 2015 03:51 am - 14     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The South African High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Geoff Doidge warned that Sri Lanka should not get too comfortable with the 'honeymoon period' granted by the international community and the human rights fraternity with regard to the UNHRC resolution passed last month.

"Everything will not be hunky-dory for long. In my opinion it is the calm before the storm,” he said.

The High Commissioner made these comments at a training workshop on a transitional justice mechanism organised by the National Peace Council (NPC) of Sri Lanka.

He added that Sri Lanka should not dismiss the report and the resolution and let the recommendations made in the investigative reports fade away -- as inaction would have consequences.

Criticising the previous regime for not implementing the recommendations, he said that nothing was done by it even though the time and the environment were right to take action in 2011 .

However, he said, Sri Lanka had no excuses now, especially taking into account the fact that Sri Lanka had co-sponsored the resolution. He also warned that there was no getting away with it and, therefore, it was best to face the issues and deal with them.

The High Commissioner pointed out that there were several issues that needed resolution; as Sri Lanka had to deal with a past consisting of decades of political oppression and war.

"There is a trust deficit in Sri Lanka, one hand does not trust the other,” he said.

He said that, going by the South African experience, the best way to deal with these issues would be to establish a tailor-made Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). He also emphasised the need to release political prisoners.

He urged the government to learn from the successes of the South African experience and not repeat its mistakes.(Shihara Maduwage)
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  Comments - 14

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  • Keerthi Wednesday, 21 October 2015 10:30 AM

    This is what you call asking and eating Canadian lentil(masoor parippu).

    Mason Wednesday, 21 October 2015 10:34 AM

    The previous regime by choice was hard of hearing. The present regime has the support of the International Community, and should it miss the opportunity, by indulging in too much blah blah, it will have itself to blame in the end, when the noose tightens.Act now without dilly dallying and get the issue into past tense.

    mike Wednesday, 21 October 2015 11:22 AM

    Geoff people in glass houses shud not throw stones. who says RSA is a success? highest no of crimes in the world/ a thoroughly divided nation between white/black

    kumar Wednesday, 21 October 2015 12:13 PM

    As usual!

    Prem Nath Wednesday, 21 October 2015 01:00 PM

    Geoff,how can you advice when your backyard is burning.SA has got no where even after their supposed reconciliation.Things seem to be getting worse in you own country.Better if you request the USA to help out in SA.

    Sangaralingham Friday, 23 October 2015 09:31 AM

    Everyone carried arms legally or illegally and those who helped are responsible and be answerable to legal inquiry with moral responsibilities

    Geoff Doidge Friday, 23 October 2015 07:00 PM

    South Africa, extends a hand of friendship. Has never prescribed nor dictated nor voted against Sri Lanka, we remain supportive! I am not of the race group that killed blacks, I am black but fair. Its time to wake up and smell the coffee.

    Paths Wednesday, 21 October 2015 03:31 PM

    A truth

    sumanadasa Wednesday, 21 October 2015 04:13 PM

    What is wrong with Sri Lankans? They cannot stand for constructive suggestions and start barking at every thing impatiently. Grow up

    Sri Lankan Wednesday, 21 October 2015 09:49 AM

    If we only had a government who had the back bone to tell this guy to take his imperialism with him back to his own country.

    jani Wednesday, 21 October 2015 09:50 AM

    Mr.High Commissioner, please you must take your own business, South Africa has the worse record of human rights and racism.

    paddy Wednesday, 21 October 2015 09:56 AM

    Oh come on can u can talk thanks President Mandela u guys escaped ..if u just destroyed for centuries the black Afircan People ..

    BuffaloaCitizen Wednesday, 21 October 2015 10:07 AM

    Only yesterday, we had the President state that "he will protect the armed forces under any circumstances"... does this mean that even if they have criminal acts, he will follow this policy. Our politicians have racism before justice, truth and country, thus we will never be able to achieve what South Africa achieved within a short period of time.

    Ranja Wednesday, 21 October 2015 04:36 PM

    These whites massacred thousands of blacks and deprived their HR. Now these crocodiles want to bite our back. Lions must send them home


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