Sunday, 14 August 2016


<%on error resume next%> OMP: seven members to be appointed shortly
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OMP: seven members to be appointed shortly

Office headquartered in Colombo: Three year term for each member:

Shortly after the Speaker signs the Office of the Missing Persons (OMP) Bill, making it law, the Constitutional Council is expected to recommend seven members to the OMP to begin its fact- finding mission.

Justice Minister Wijeyedasa Rajapakshe told the Sunday Observer the Government was doing the groundwork to set up the OMP within the coming weeks. President Maithripala Sirisena will appoint the members to the OMP including the Chairman within a fortnight after the Constitutional Council makes its recommendations.

“We will make the appointments shortly. We are waiting for the Speaker to sign the Bill, he said adding that the office will come into operation before the end of this year. The term of office for each member will be three years.

The Bill provides for the appointment of seven members, representing all ethnicities. The office will be headquartered in Colombo. The Bill provides for the setting up of regional offices if necessary to achieve the mandate of the OMP. Members must have experience in -fact finding, investigation, human rights law, international humanitarian law and humanitarian response among other things. Its mandate is to search and trace missing persons, protect the rights and interests of missing persons and their relatives and to ensure non recurrence of such incidents.

The setting up of the OMP is among the commitments undertaken by the Government under the UN Human Rights Council resolutions adopted in September last year.

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