• Last Update 2021-09-27 14:53:00

It is the duty of the State, as per the Mandela Rules, to protect the rights of prisoners: UN Resident Coordinator

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Condemning the recent incident where State Minister Lohan Ratwatte allegedly entered the Anuradhapura Prison Complex last Sunday and threatened prisoners detained under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA),  UN Resident Coordinator Hanaa Singer-Hamdy stressed that it is the duty of the State to protect the rights of prisoners.

“It is the duty of the State, as per the Mandela Rules, to protect the rights of prisoners. In our work on prison reform and drug rehabilitation @UNSriLanka works to strengthen capacities to uphold the rights of all those in custody & condemns any ill-treatment of prisoners,” she tweeted.

The tweet came in the wake of calls from Opposition parties demanding the immediate resignation of the State Minister from the post and initiate legal action.

However, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has accepted State Minister of Prison Management and Prisoners' Rehabilitation Lohan Ratwatte’s resignation, President’s Media Division confirmed a short while ago.

The former Minister tendered his resignation taking responsibility over the two incidents in which he entered Welikada and Anuradhapura prison complexes along with friends, some under the influence of liquor, and threatened prisoners.

The Minister in the letter of resignation said he is willingly resigning in order to avoid any inconvenience caused to the government.

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