The government couldn’t interfere with the ongoing judicial investigations pertaining to the assassination of Minister Jeyaraj Fernandopulle during the war, UPFA General Secretary and Fisheries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said.
Admitting that there had been an inordinate delay in the judicial process, Amaraweera said the government couldn’t intervene on behalf of anyone.
Amaraweera said so when The Island sought an explanation regarding the government’s failure to address the issue.
Jeyaj’s widow, State Minister of City Planning and Water Supply Dr. Sudarshini Fernandopulle, was flanking Amaraweera.
The Island pointed out that Fernandopulle had been assassinated in April nine years back and the government was concerned about addressing accountability issues as regards the LTTE suspects but the cases involving victims of LTTE terrorism didn’t receive the same attention. Amaraweera said he agreed but reiterated that the government could not intervene in the judicial process.
Claiming that no one talked about those problems, the Minister said he had been urged by some to take a stand on judiciary similar to that of UNP MP Ranjan Ramanayake. However, he didn’t want to incur the wrath of the judiciary.
Mrs Fernandopulle refrained from commenting. However, after the media briefing she said she regretted the situation. She said she had been attending Jeyaraj’s assassination case for years.
Among those arrested and charged in court were a personal friend of Jeyaraj, an ASP who allegedly facilitated the suicide attack at Weliweriya and the mastermind, widely believed to be the top most Colombo-based undercover LTTE operative captured by the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID).
Amaraweera said the government couldn’t hold kangaroo courts to expedite cases. He also expressed concern over certain cases being put off by many months for the benefit of some party. (SF)