LLRC term extended
President Mahinda Rajapaksa has extended the mandate of the Lessons
Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) by six months in view of the
large number of persons from Sri Lanka and abroad still to give evidence
before it. In May 2010, President Rajapaksa appointed an eight-member
Commission to report on the lessons to be learnt from the events from
February 2002 to May 2009, their attendant concerns and to recommend
measures to ensure that there will be no recurrence of such a situation.
The Commission is chaired by former Attorney General Chitta Ranjan de
The mandate of the LLRC was to expire on November 15. It will now be
able to continue hearings and submit its reports until May 16, 2011.
The initial period since its establishment was spent on
infrastructure and organizational work of the Commission.
Since then the Commission so far had regular public hearings in
Colombo and in the conflict affected areas of Vavuniya, Batticaloa and
Kilinochchi. This included field visits to meet people directly affected
by the conflict. It spent three days each in these areas where people in
large numbers, at times around 500 a day came before the Commission and
expressed their grievances, explained the trauma undergone and hardships
faced, and also suggested remedial measures and aspects of
reconciliation, Commission Secretary S B Atugoda said.
So far more than 100 persons including political activists, social
workers, academia, members of clergy, those engaged in conflict
resolution and representatives from non- governmental organizations have
given evidence before the Commission. The LLRC is expected to visit more
places affected by the conflict.
It has already submitted an interim communication recommending
administrative means to resolve some of the pressing grievances of the
people affected by the conflict.
The Government has appointed an Inter-Advisory Committee to
facilitate early in implementation of these recommendations of the LLRC.
The Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the International
Crisis Group jointly turned down an invitation by the LLRC to place any
relevant evidence they have before the Commission.