Dec 19, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka has to re-build an independent public service and restore rule of law to give freedom to citizens, a commission of inquiry on lessons learnt and reconciliation following the end of a 30-year civil war has said. “A democracy must assure a fair system of governance under the Rule of Law rather than the rule of men,” a final report published by the commission of inquiry said.

“Respect for the rights and freedoms of the citizens of a country is the very essence of the concept of the Rule of Law.”

Sri Lanka has had three civil wars since 1970, but the commission of inquiry dealt mostly with war between Tamil Tiger separatists which ended in May 2009.

The commission report said the re-establishment of rule of law was essential to reconcile different communities.

The commission said representations were made that a “large number of persons having political patronage had committed offences” but they escaped the law the political pressure exerted on law enforcement authorities.

“Along with an independent Judiciary and a transparent legal process a strict adherence to the Rule of Law is a sine qua non for peace and stability which is of the essence, if there is to be any meaningful reconciliatio