We do have an­ticor­rup­tion Laws in place in Sri Lanka

Sunday Times (Sri Lanka) - - SPORTS - By Lak­sh­man de Silva [For­mer head of Sri Lanka Cricket's (SLC) the Anti-Cor­rup­tion Unit (ACU)]

The Sun­day Times pub­lishes this ar­ti­cle in re­sponse to the ar­ti­cle in the Sun­day Times of November 4, ti­tled, 'We will have our own Anti-Cor­rup­tion Laws soon', by SLC's CEO.

When asked for his views, re­tired Se­nior Su­per­in­ten­dent of Po­lice and for­mer Head of SLC's ACU, ex­plained it thus.

"Sri Lanka (SL) may not re­quire such a ‘ high pow­ered’ Code for Anti-Cor­rup­tion in Cricket, due to the fact that the Min­istry of Sports (MoS) it­self has ini­ti­ated a fully-fledged Anti-Cor­rup­tion Act, cov­er­ing all Sports (64) reg­is­tered with the MoS, in­clud­ing Cricket."

"Most of the of­fences pro­posed in this ‘ Sports Anti- Cor­rup­tion Act’, are de­clared crim­i­nal, which im­plies that the Po­lice could in­ter­vene di­rectly, whilst the vi­o­la­tions are tried by the high­est court in the coun­try, the High Courts, with em­pow­er­ment to im­pose heavy fines and jail sen­tences."

"The SLC Anti-Cor­rup­tion code is very much based on the ICC's Anti-Cor­rup­tion Code, with some in­clu­sions con­cern­ing SL's con­straints. This code was re­vised twice dur­ing my 5-year ten­ure, as cus­tom­ary, to cor­re­spond with the amend­ments to the ICC's An­tiCor­rup­tion Code. The SLC is ex­pected to apprise, if nec­es­sary, the ICC-ACU, of its in­ves­ti­ga­tions and also to seek as­sis­tance from the ICC- ACU, which they would read­ily of­fer. As a re­sult of this trust­wor­thy in­ter­ac­tion we had in the past, alarm­ing ex­po­sures have sur­faced re­cently.”

"The cur­rent AC Code of the SLC could be ad­e­quate to con­trol cor­rup­tion within Cricket, pro­vided it is im­ple­mented ‘strictly and ap­pro­pri­ately’. It has all the in­gre­di­ents to pre­vent, in­ves­ti­gate and pun­ish wrong­do­ers, while accessibility to the most fun­da­men­tal fea­ture therein, the ‘Aware­ness and Ed­u­ca­tional’ pro­grammes."

“This al­lows the SLC to com­mu­ni­cate to the ‘Play­ers and Player Sup­port Per­son­nel’, the norm that ‘il­licit wealth is sec­ondary to the hon­our of serv­ing the coun­try and pre­serv­ing through­out, the con­fi­den­tial­ity of the pub­lic (fans)’. The ICC- ACU will al­ways an­tic­i­pate as­sis­tance from the lo­cal AC bod­ies, pro­vided there is a sound work­ing at­mos­phere be­tween the two par­ties, as what was main­tained.”

"Most of the Asian coun­tries have yet to in­tro­duce crim­i­nal of­fences into their Cricket AC Codes. There too, Po­lice in­ter­ven­tion is only if a crim­i­nal of­fence is re­ported dur­ing an act of Cricket cor­rup­tion. As SLC is a non-Govern­ment en­tity, such of­fences do not come un­der the Bribery Act ei­ther, but for­tu­nately, it would be an of­fence un­der the pro­posed ‘ Sports Anti Cor­rup­tion Act’, of the MoS.”

“The ini­tial dis­cus­sion for the Sports Anti-Cor­rup­tion Act ini­ti­ated by the MoS, with Cabi­net en­dorse­ment, way back in Oc­to­ber 2013, was Chaired by Anura Jayaw­ick­rama, the then MoS Sec­re­tary. They were reg­u­larly as­sisted by a high pow­ered com­mit­tee com­pris­ing a for­mer In­spec­tor Gen­eral of Po­lice, the then SLC Sec­re­tary Nis­han­tha Ranatunga and rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Le­gal Drafts­men’s Dept and At­tor­neys- at- Law. I could proudly say that, at that time, the SLC was able to add am­ple ma­te­rial to for­mu­late this Act and also rep­re­sent per­son­ally, at sev­eral con­sul­ta­tions with the Le­gal Drafts­man, as it (SLC) was the sole author­ity into Sports AC ac­tiv­i­ties in the coun­try.”

" Wi t h the change of Ad­min­is­tra­tors in the MoS, th­ese dis­cus­sions dragged on till 2017,when it sud­denly ceased for rea­sons un­known, which should be looked into. How­ever, it has sur­faced again end 2018. The con­tin­u­a­tion is yet to be seen. This Act, I be­lieve, is most ad­e­quate to con­trol all the Sports in the coun­try, in­clud­ing Cricket, to be free of cor­rup­tion. ' Fix­ing' is not con­fined purely to Cricket, but also to most sports com­pe­ti­tions world­wide.”

To elab­o­rate that, the SLC pro­posed the Cricket AC Act will also re­quire, prob­a­bly, a time con­sum­ing te­dious pro­ce­dure and fi­nally, a Cabi­net ap­proval. Now that a wide ranged ‘ Sports An­tiCor­rup­tion’ Act is in the pipe­line, the Sports Min­is­ter him­self will have to de­ter­mine if an­other sim­i­lar act to an in­di­vid­ual sports body is es­sen­tial.”

“I must also stress that, how much Le­gal re­stric­tions are ex­ist­ing, in the event of a break­down in ‘Ad­min­is­tra­tion and Dis­ci­pline’, cor­rupt seeds will nur­ture. Fi­nally, as an ex­am­ple, I am also of the view that, real per­pe­tra­tors re­spon­si­ble in the lo­cal match-fix­ing in­ci­dent oc­curred last year in the Panadura and Ka­lu­tara Clubs, would have been ex­posed and dealt firmly with, if the said MoS AC Act was in force.”

Most of the Asian coun­tries have yet to in­tro­duce crim­i­nal of­fences into their Cricket AC Codes. There too, Po­lice in­ter­ven­tion is only if a crim­i­nal of­fence is re­ported dur­ing an act of Cricket cor­rup­tion.

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