I NOMINATED THE MOST SENIOR AND EXPERIENCED SC JUDGE: MS
For the first time in Sri Lanka’s judicial history I have nominated the most senior and experienced Supreme Court Judge to the post of Chief Justice and hope the Constitutional Council will confirm my nominee as the 46th Chief Justice of Sri Lanka, President Maithripala Sirisena said.
He said this at a ceremony held yesterday at ‘Ape Gama’ in Battaramulla where letters of appointment were handed over to Regional Forest Officers and the Productivity Awards of the Mahaweli Development and Environment Department.
The President said in several instances in the past the Heads of State had appointed Chief Justices not on merit but on political, personal or party considerations.
“The Supreme Court judges met me soon after I returned from Seychelles early this week and urged me to nominate the most qualified and senior judge of the Supreme Court as the Chief Justice. They said by doing so the career judges would nurse the confidence that they too will stand the chance of being appointed to the post sans undue influence,” he said.
He said he did not submit several names to be considered for the post of CJ but only the name of an official who had served the judiciary for 38 years and 11 months having served as a President of a Labour Tribunal and risen from the ranks to Sri Lanka’s apex court.
Referring to the need to safeguard forests and the environment, the President said human beings overcame evolutionary challenges by protecting the environment and adapting to the changes of nature.
“The value of the environment, forests and nature for the existence of mankind and for the safety of the earth is beyond measure. Therefore, the employees of the Forest Department, Regional Forest Officers, District Forest Officers, Beat Forest Officers, Field officers have a huge responsibility to protect, develop and expand forest cover for the benefit of future generations,” he said. “the new appointees have secured those positions by facing a test and interview. They are the top in knowledge and education. But knowledge and education alone would not be sufficient to do an efficient and productive duty that would be beneficial to the nation and country. It is the commitment, dedication, humane feeling and duty consciousness that matter to give a proper and productive service.”
The President said their service and productivity will be judged in four or five years not by their knowledge but from their dedication, efficiency and commitment to serve the country.
“Therefore, it is extremely important that you do your job as a service and duty to the country and people,” the President said.
A newly-appointed Regional Forest Officer seen receiving his letter of appointment from the President in the presence of Deputy Environment Minister Ajith Mannapperuma, Mahaweli Development and Environment Ministry Secretary Anura Dissanayaka and Conservator General of Forests, Anura Sathurusingha.