Fmr BASL President demands Dappula be questioned

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By Thameenah Razeek

Former President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) President Counsel U. R. de Silva demanded that Police record a statement from former Attorney General Dappula de Livera, regarding his claim that there was a grand conspiracy behind the 2019 Easter Bombings, in order to show people what the conspiracy was and who actually did it.

Aside from that, he said that the former AG must be responsible enough to provide Colombo Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith with the information he possesses in writing.

“At the moment, Dappula de Livera has no information gathered from current investigations. Those pieces of evidence or information should be retrieved from his time as AG, and based on them, the former AG should prove that there was a conspiracy. It is his responsibility to reveal, based on what he called the Easter Bombings, that there is a conspiracy for the betterment of Catholics and the victims of the bombings,” he said.

President Counsel de Silva told the media yesterday that Cardinal has the right to question the incumbent AG about the evidence provided by the former AG.

He said that if Dappula de Livera had sufficient evidence, he should have charged former State Intelligence Director General Nilantha Jayawardena and former President Maithripala Sirisena. He questioned why charges were not filed against the duo.

Addressing the same media briefing, President’s Counsel Mohan Weerakoon said the former AG is fully responsible for the current mess and that the heated situation in the country has arisen as a result of his statement.

He noted that in light of the third anniversary of the Easter bombings, victims and Cardinal Ranjith were agitated as a result of the baseless statement. He also stressed that it is unethical for an AG to make such a remark as he prepares to retire.

“Dappula de Livera was appointed as Attorney General and served for two years but did not file any charges against Jayawardena or Sirisena. He must have framed the Easter bombings as a conspiracy because he has evidence, and as AG, he could have taken action against the wrongdoers behind the bombings using the evidence. It is unethical to summon a former Attorney General to record a statement,” he said.

Further, de Silva said that it is the incumbent IGP’s responsibility to request a statement from the former AG rather than arresting him. “This is the cause of the tense situation that has erupted across the country. It is wrong if Dappula de Livera says he wants to give a statement and the Police avoid it,” he said.

It was also revealed at the press conference that the 12+ petitions filed at the Supreme Court are not an impediment to filing a case against Senior DIG Nilantha Jayawardena for dereliction of duty.