Cardinal Demands Action Before 21 April 2021
By Buddhika Samaraweera
Immediate legal action should be taken against politicians and officials who have been accused in the final Report of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) into the bombings on Easter Sunday, 21 April 2019, said Archbishop of Colombo, Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith.
He was speaking to the Media after the Easter service at St. Anthony’s Church in Kochchikade yesterday (4). The Cardinal said, some Parliamentarians and Ministers who had had links with the National Thowheed Jama’at (NTJ) leader Zaharan Hashim are still in Parliament. If no action is taken, before 21 April 2021, against the suspects involved in the Easter Sunday bombings and those who have neglected their responsibilities, we will get on the streets, he warned.
A DIG who did not take any action despite receiving information about the bombings is currently serving in the Kandy District as a Senior DIG.
The Cardinal questioned the Government and President as to why they are further waiting to initiate legal action against politicians and officials who had not fulfilled their responsibilities. The PCoI’s final report clearly states who should be held responsible for this. There is no need for it to be further investigated, he added.
The PCoI has made their recommendations based on investigations carried out over a period of one and a half years. The most responsible parties have been named. In such a backdrop, why is the Government still waiting to implement those recommendations? he asked.
Noting that they were no longer being deceived, the Archbishop said, the Government should take immediate action to punish the culprits.
Security was beefed up around St. Anthony’s Church, one of the targets of the suicide bombers on 21 April 2019. Relatives of those killed in the bombings on Easter Sunday also attended the service in memory of their loved ones.
Easter Sunday services were also held at St. Sebastian’s Church, Katuwapitiya and Zion Church, Batticaloa, which were the other targets of suicide bombers.
Meanwhile, Attorney General Dappula de Livera yesterday rejected claims made in the Media that charges regarding the Easter Sunday Bombings would be filed soon. Instead, he said a special team has been appointed to handle the case.