Witness Protection Bill: Amendments drafted
Oct 20, 2014

The Justice Ministry was drafting amendments suggested by the Supreme Court to be incorporated in the Assistance to and Protection of Victims of Crime and Witnesses Bill to be presented in the Parliament later, the sources said. The government presented the first draft in Parliament recently.

Then, six petitions were filed in the Supreme Court challenging its Constitutionality. The Court suggested several amendments and sent them to Parliament.

Equal treatment of victims despite their different social statuses, was main among them.

Justice Ministry Secretary Kamalini de Silva said all amendments, suggested by the Supreme Court, were being drafted at the moment to be incorporated in the Bill during its third reading in Parliament. “We are drafting them at the moment,” she said.

She said it was uncertain whether it could be enacted any time soon because of the upcoming budget debate.

The debate will start on October 24 and continue till November 24.

Chief Government Whip Dinesh Gunwardane said the government would try to find time for the enactment of this Bill during the course of the budget debate or before that.

“We have to enact it. For that, time has to be found either before the budget debate or during the budget period. It will be discussed at the next party leaders’ meeting,” he said.

Source: Daily Mirror - Sri Lanka

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