President Gotabaya Rajapaksa told senior Prison Department officials yesterday that crimes orchestrated by underworld kingpins and drug mafia from within prisons must be stopped without delay.
He said that there was specific information relating to criminal activities and drug peddling that are in operation from behind prison walls and that the public is appalled by this situation.
“This has to be rectified. Use of mobile phones within prison premises should be completely stopped, ” President added.
The President warned that if Prisons or Police reach a state of collapse, it will adversely affect the maintenance of law and order in the country and he expects officials to work impartially whatever their political loyalties maybe. Corrupt and inefficient officers should be identified, and appropriate action taken regarding them, he said.
President Rajapaksa said that the existing shortcomings of the Department of Prisons will be removed, and the system will be entirely overhauled. A committee comprising Secretary Defence Kamal Gunaratne, Army Commander Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva and and the Inspector General of Police Chandana Wickramaratne will oversee the restructuring.
Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, Secretary to the President, P.B. Jayasundera, Secretary Defence, Secretary to Ministry of Justice, Mrs. S. M. Mohamed, Commanders of Tri-Forces, Acting Inspector General of Police, Commissioner General of Prisons and the high ranking officials of the Police and Department of Prisons attended the meeting.