In reference to the Sinhala translation of the statement issued by the President’s Media Division about the Presidential Pardon for Royal Park murder convict, Most Rev. Dr Raymond Wickramasinghe, the Bishop of Galle clarifies as follows.
“It has mentioned clearly that I made a personal written request on behalf of the convict (Jude Shramantha Anthony Jayamaha). I wish to state that I have not made any request on behalf of Jude Shramantha Anthony Jayamaha neither to the President nor to the respected Judiciary.
It was carried out on the recommendations of a special committee of officials, civil organisations and several distinguished members of the society.
I personally do not know him or at least did not do a thorough study of the case. However, a few years ago, I recall, a group of Rev. Buddhist Monks and some Civil Society Members approached me to make a written appeal to the President to pay attention to the prisoners, especially to the young detainees, help them to study and rehabilitate them in a positive environment. We will continue to voice the same in the future too.
I regret that our appeal was singled out to give an impression about this particular case, which I believe is absolutely not acceptable. I hope the relevant authorities will take the responsibility for this mistake, which has caused serious confusion in the society and has tarnished my name and the name of the Diocese of Galle and the Catholic community in general.
It has mentioned clearly that I made a personal written request on behalf of the convict (Jude Shramantha Anthony Jayamaha)