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Saturday, 2 October 2010

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Constitution describes pardon procedure



President
Mahinda Rajapaksa

President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday said that the existing Constitution describes a clear process to follow if former Army Chief Sarath Fonseka appeals for a pardon. He said that he would evaluate it if and when such an appeal is made using established regulations.

The President made these comments when he met leading Buddhist Clergy of Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Trincomalee and Vavuniya Districts in Polonnaruwa yesterday where he looked into issues faced by the Buddhist monks of the above areas.

President Rajapaksa stressed that he had not approved the decision of the Military Court on a personal vendetta which was delivered after Fonseka was found guilty on the charge of his involvement in a financial fraud.

The President noted that if he had not approved the decision of the Military Court as its confirming authority the entire system would lose its credibility. He said everyone was equal before the law.

The President pointed out that there had been more than 8,000 cases before the Military Court in the recent past and this was not an isolated case.

He observed that he had appointed the Military Court by powers vested in him as the Head of Armed Forces in the country.

During yesterday’s meeting with the Buddhist clergy the President looked into their grievances and the general social problems which their respective areas faced.

Ministers Maithripala Sirisena, Bandula Gunewardene, Pavithra Wanniarachchi, Deputy Ministers S M Chandrasena, M K D S Gunewardene, Duminda Dissanayake, Susantha Punchnilame, North Central Chief Minister Berty Premalal Dissanayake, Governor Karunarathne Divulgane, local politicians and officials were present.

 

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