Commissioner appointed for PCoI | Sunday Observer
To implement recommendations of past Commissions

Commissioner appointed for PCoI

14 February, 2021

A Commissioner has been appointed to the Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) to implement the recommendations of past Commissions which probed allegations of human rights excesses in the country.

In a Gazette notification issued on Friday (February 12), Secretary to the President, P.B. Jayasundera stated that President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has appointed former Mayor of Jaffna Yogeswari Patkunarajah as a Commissioner to the three-member panel. The PCoI probing alleged human rights violations, serious violations of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and other such offences in Sri Lanka was appointed in January.

It will investigate, inquire into and report or take action on the findings of past Commissions or Committees which probed alleged human rights violations in the country. The Commission chaired by Supreme Court Judge A.H.M.D. Nawaz consists of retired IGP Chandra Fernando and retired District Secretary Nimal Abeysiri.

The mandate of the Commission includes:

• Finding out whether preceding Commissions of Inquiry and Committees which were appointed to probe human rights violations have revealed any human rights violations, serious violations of international humanitarian law and other such serious offences.

• Identify what are the findings of the said Commissions and Committees related to the serious violations of human rights, serious violations of international humanitarian laws and other such offences and whether recommendations have been made on how to deal with the facts.

• Look into the manner in which those recommendations have been implemented so far in terms of the existing law and what steps need to be taken to implement those recommendations further in line with the present Government’s policy.

• Oversee if necessary action is being taken.

They have been directed to submit the final report with its investigations, inquiries and recommendations within six months from the date of appointment.