Rizana Nafeek; what is her fate? PDF Print E-mail
Written by DM_Team   
Tuesday, 28 June 2011 16:49
altThe Rizana Nafeek case has been in the media since her arrest in May, 2005—her story has raised numerous questions on the safety of women traveling to the Middle East for employment. Her life now hangs in the balance. 
Last Updated on Tuesday, 28 June 2011 16:55
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# DM_Team 2011-06-28 16:56
United National Party MP Ranjan Ramanayake

We protest against the Saudi Arabian embassy for the proposed killing of Rizana. The Saudi Arabian government beheaded an Indonesian housemaid recently and the family was notified only after the beheading. We won’t tolerate double standards. The Saudi Government will never dare to behead any US or British national who is on death sentence since they don’t want to get on the wrong side of those Governments.
We have asked the Government to do their best but to no avail. Therefore we have decided to appeal to the US, British and Italian Embassy to step in on our behalf. Our government is weak and they cannot help Rizana. We will be discussing it with those embassies and handing over letters to their central government. Minister Dilan Perera and Sri Lanka Bureau for Foreign Employment Chairman Kingsley Ranawaka have never visited Rizana’s family, so can I expect them to do anything about it?
A Saudi Arabian man murdered his Sri Lankan domestic aide and got away with paying Saudi Riyal 40,000 as blood or compensation money. The SLFEB and the Embassy helped to settle this matter. It was a housemaid named P. Selvadurai who was the mother of four children. More than 333 Sri Lankans are killed in Middle East annually and those people who killed them get away with cold blooded murder while our people have to pay with their life for murders they did not commit.
I challenge the Saudi Arabian Embassy to tell me whether they have ever killed a European or US prisoner on death row. The answer will have to be no. Recently a few male Sri Lankan labourers were beheaded but in Rizana’s case we are appealing since she was under-aged when the incident took place and therefore be treated as a minor.
# Tony 2011-06-29 17:50
What rubbish is Ranjan Ramanayake talking. Do you beleive this joker. Please get your facts straight right. If we had a weak government how on earth do you think they would have eradicated the ruthless LTTE , be thankful to them that you could walk the streets without bombs going at every interval.
This guy is pure rubbish !!!
# Priyantha 2011-06-30 13:37
Tony - This is the problem with this government. every body thinks that since they eradicated Terrorism they were Stronge, The war ended because Sarath Fonseka, because governemnt know they are weak they put him in Jail. And Rizana case what happend for 5 years nothing happend. We can only do this by Creating pressure to both governemnts. Hats off to Ranjan for what he is doing
# Patriot 2011-07-07 10:00
Priyantha, In fact it's not.. despite eradicating war, SF has been there for decades,,, hasn't he? he couldn't even imagine .. not even in his dreams as to the situation in the dim age. Do you remember the times our heroes were counted and the times their days were numbered ?

What if MR deliberately happened to send SF to a different route? he was sent in to jail because of the predicament that all the Sri Lankans are put in NOW..... Ranjan is trying to be too smart by making a noise where there needs to be a silence. Notice decisions cannot be made by being so loud, but the truth is out there to find ... open your eyes.... panorama awaits for who are illusioned
# Steve 2011-06-30 14:10
Tony for how long will you people hide behind LTTE victory, Sri Lanka is a wonderful country. I loved Sri Lanka more than anybody around me, but it has just turned the other way. Politics is a joke, economic development is going the other way around, and we are competing with Zimbabwe in inflation and economy.. Awesome bro. I am very glad and thankful to my god to get me out of Sri Lanka. To all educated, sound-minded and intellectual Sri Lankan Youth, this is for you "If you want to establish yourself, get recognized, or build your dream, move away from Sri Lanka' and maybe after you are stable, you could consider coming back. It is good for Sri Lanka and for us all.
# Patriot 2011-07-07 10:53
it's all right by being sarcastic and idiotic... but being brainless is different, u had the guts to stay under the bed of your mom's for 30 odd years happily thanks to the war which is over by now... see undoubtedly how unlucky you are .. it has been only two years, see the fuss you are making against your country. loving and turning are two different things steve which is something you don’t understand unfortunately. people like you all ways deserve the white fragrances and their polluted ,bloody soil to dig your own grave.
u said after stable don't you? Sri Lanka mother never wants to have sons like you, remember.. this was the country we were born... and stood, and mind ... this is where we establish our sacred dreams . and this is where we die..

live with it or leave it...
# ashfd 2011-07-01 09:39
Cheers to Ranjan Ramanayake for his tireless effort..i think he is the only man in Sl.coz he is the one who stands up for a innocent girl...

i wish him all the best!!! may God bless you!!

i wish if our president too acts like him to save an innocent girl..Pls just do something we are all human beings...
# Jayatilleke 2011-07-02 20:37
Tony, who claimed the LTTE were the ruthless terrorists in the world? Also, in the beginning the LTTE were claimed as rebels, not terrorists. We claimed the LTTE as terrorists, we claimed them to be the most ruthless in the world and we claimed our armies are the best. Now, why don
t we claimed for this innocent girl? Wake up you frog in the well, and think with your brain without claiming yourself to be the best.
# wicky 2011-07-03 12:00
Tony please get up from your slumber! It is high time you and the government of Sri Lanka did. The LTTE episode is history. Lets live in the future and tackle the present day problems without singing the praises of the past
# Patriot 2011-07-07 10:56
Glad.. it's said that forget the past.. But Wicky will you be there today if you didn't have your yesterday? So hadle words with care..
# SD 2011-07-13 10:58
TRUE!Get over the damned LTTE victory!Thats the only thing this rubbish government has ever done and thats all they have to hide behind!Their all a bunch of stealing,lying, ruthless scum-bags!
# manel 2011-07-04 10:43
Tony! Why should you attack Ranjan R over some -- perhaps -- unfortunate wording of his his heartfelt statement. As far as I can see he has been the only MP - PEOPLE"S representative -- here who has expressed any concern & been active about Rizana. he is not an experienced politician, but least he is trying to do SOMETHING that such people were put in power to do! unlike most others! I do not know him, but the very fact that he has committed some time/energy & resources to this very serious matter of our "human labour exports" has given me some respect for him. Have YOU followed the Rizana Nafeek case, Tony? If you had, u would also see that tackling such a problem is completely different from military matters, & requires a different approach, understanding, diplomacy, compassion, etc etc. The ability to go to war is something else altogether. Efecting the peace & matters fo good govt r something entirely different.
# Isthikar latheef 2011-07-05 13:27
its not the government, its our great forces heros did it because than planing execution is dificult. This goverment is a rubbish bullshit goverment
# Patriot 2011-07-07 10:58
Remember Isthikar,
ever hero needs a team and ever team needs a hero...
so who rubbishes who? I’m not surprised
# saif 2011-07-05 18:13
please brother stop talikng like this , that is his views
# jayanth 2011-07-12 07:30
Talk to a point he is talking abt rizana
# J.K. 2011-07-01 03:02
It is wrong to say that the Govt did not do anything. Even President appealed from Saudi King. The rule is that the victims parents has to pardon Rizana. It may be true that Saudi adopts double standards. The law dealing with such issues in Saudi is very ambiguous and not at all transparent. The best option is to prohibit females taking up blue collor jobs in Middle East as done by India. But then again, the Govt should also take the burden of providing alternate employment to those females. In any case, dying out of hunger in your own backyard is better than getting beheaded for something you didnt do.
# ashfd 2011-07-01 09:42
wish you all the best Ranjan Ramanayake...

you are the only man who stands up 4 a girl...

may God bless you..
my blessings are with you for saving this girl..

Pls do something.....cheers!!!
# manel fonseka 2011-07-16 17:56
WHEN will some authoritative or learned (in the relevant legal system) tell US, the concerned Sri Lankan public, whether or not the King of Saudi Arabia has the power of mercy in a case like Rizana's (whom most of us believe is innocent anyway). It is high time some experienced people, especially some of those who have been diplomats for SL in SA, had the guts and the compassion to speak out about this. Everybody (apart from the former Consul who blogged on 1st July) who has worked in a relevant post in SA, with, at least PART of their brief being the protection of Sri Lankan citizens in the kingdom, appears to be utterly indifferent or anyway, unwilling to speak out publicly and clarify the legal position here. mf
# Sumedha 2011-07-21 08:21
What is the fact behind? In first paragraph he says Saudi is not dare to behead even US or UK national. Then he says that he trying to influence UK and other embassies.. I think this governement is dealing with middle east in good manner, whatever happens in the west.. Rezana has better chance of getting released under current context than any other governement.
# DM_Team 2011-06-28 16:57
Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) spokesperson Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe

If something should come out of Rizana’s incident, the Government has to come out with a clear cut policy when sending labourers to the Middle East. The Government is forced to make the necessary policy changes. The President and the government should do their utmost to help save Rizana’s life.
Women from a lot of Asian countries seek employment in the Middle East regardless of the cases of abuse, rape and killing. Most of them work below the basic wage level under inhumane conditions and without pay. We should eventually stop sending women to these countries since the social cost is much higher when compared to the revenue that the country generates through them. This issue is most often swept under the carpet and it will only worsen for the future generations to come. Sending women as housemaids lead to the destruction of the family unit. Not forgetting that it also harms the image of the country.
The housemaids should be soon replaced due to the escalating trend of abuse they experience at the hands of their employers in these Middle Eastern countries. They are treated below the level of a slave. When these women are sent on foreign employment the Government and the ministry should be responsible for their wellbeing. They should be educated of their rights and the foreign missions should play a greater role in their well being and safety.
# DM_Team 2011-06-28 16:58
Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen

I met with the Governor of Riyadh Prince Salmaan and we spoke for half an hour on Rizana’s issue when I visited Saudi Arabia a few weeks back. I met with Rizana’s parents and family before I left. I told him that the people and the President of this country our all expecting that she will be released soon. I told him that we respected the Islamic rules of their country. Then the Prince said that according to those rules the parents of the dead infant had the power to forgive Rizana. The Prince however assured that they are trying to work out the issue with the parents but only time will tell. At least the parents are not forcing for her to be executed.
# Hussain 2011-07-12 12:17
Which section of Islamic Sharia Law is applied for Rizana's death panelty. Pls. understand that There is no Islamic Shariah Law in Saudi, it is Tribes law implementing since the take over the country by Al Saud family. Also Talaiban in Afganistan has same law.
# Silva 2011-07-12 14:15
Good to know the truth of the governing system in the Kingdom.
# Haneef 2011-07-12 17:23
Very disappointing comments by the Minister Rishad, he doesn’t know the Islamic law or rule. Islamic Shariah not permit Monarchy.
# DM_Team 2011-06-28 16:59
Former Deputy Minister of External Affairs Hussein Baila

It is not in the hands of the judges or the King. Only the parents of the infant that died can forgive Rizana. What happened was that the Provincial high court in city of Dawadmee heard the case and then it went to the court of Cassation which is like the appeals court and thereafter finally to the Kings court, where we came to know that the King had put a hold on the sentence.
The King can only request the parents to pardon and we heard that the King’s court had requested a pardon but there wasn’t a response from the parents. Our President appealed for clemency but there the Saudi Arabian King hasn’t the right to pardon on behalf of the parents. The thing about blood money is that if only the family is willing to accept will there be any exchange of it if not none can be forced on them. Therefore it remains in the hands of the parents to forgive and they can demand a sum as blood money. We heard that the father might be willing but we don’t know that for sure.
# Dr.Inamullah PhD 2011-07-01 10:13
BUT The officials in the Embassy of ours in Riyadh, Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry and the SLBFE failed to prove that Rizana was a Minor of 13 years By taking legal action against her father, man-power agent and the immigration officer who forged the Passport citing her age as 23.

As per Saudi Share'a Law no death penalty given on a person below 18 years...had the Lankan authorities produced the documents of legal value to the Zsaudi Courts this childs life could have been saved.

But the President who requested the Clemency is unaware of the failures from the part of External affa
irs Ministry and Embassy as well as bureaucrats.

Dr.Inamullah PhD
Former Consul General of SL in Jeddah - Saudi Arabia.
# abdul Rahmaan 2011-07-08 14:28
Dr. Inamullah is right when he says that the legal system in Saudi Arabia is 'Saudi Sharia Law'. It is clear that it is not ISLAMIC sharia law. Where in Islamic Sharia law this barbarian law of jungle is stipulated? They say even the king is helpless. CRAZY!! Good job Ranjan Ramnayaka to at least appeal the gods of Saudis in US, UK etc. Saudi Sharia Law will do anything for them.
# Doc - KSA 2011-07-02 15:13
I agree with Mr.Baila. He was in Riyadh and he knows the actual situation.But only thing we must keep in our mind that Saudi official can carry out the dead sentence without informing to SL embassy. We hope, their will be a positive response from parents (diseased infant) and King Abdullah.
# saif 2011-07-09 01:09
Mr.Hussain Baila please Stop talking nonsense Baila?

In Saudi the King has the power.

He can do what he want.

That's why he help America to rob the Islamic wealth through "Aramco"

I hope you know that In Islamic Shari'a will not allow any one to punish Risaanaa for the crime which occur without her knowledge.

If the child parents or the King of Saudi will not ready to forgive Risaanaa, then they can Except the Blood Money for her mistake.

If they refuse to do so, They have to kill Risaanaa the way how she killed the child.That also they can try only one time.

If any body kill any one without their knowledge;by punishing them the same way they might be protect by that rule.

This is Islamic sharia.

Can't you to help our 'Mufti' to explain and teach the Islamic Shari'a to Saudi scholars.
# DM_Team 2011-06-28 17:01
Women and Media Collective Director Dr. Sepali Kottegoda

The manner in which the SL government responded to the issue should also be critically examined. Our government stepped into the issue only after several international organizations including the Asian Human Rights Watch intervened and rallied for her release. Rizana was deprived of immediate legal support she was entitled for, which largely contributed to the aggravation of the issue. The Sri Lankan government should review its policies and ensure that immediate and full support is given to Sri Lankans who face allegations in other countries.

The failure to specify the nature of work the migrated women are made to carry out is also a factor which contributed to the current situation. Regulations should be imposed concerning nature of work these migrating women are assigned to. It should be made a duty of the employers to specify the nature of work they expect their employees to carry out once they are recruited.

It will be a tragedy if Rizana’s execution is carried out because it was a catastrophic combination of factors that led to that young woman’s current plight. It is mainly poverty, insecurity and limited options that compel these young women to migrate for work. It is even more tragic that the local regulations were not strictly adhered to concerning age limitations and the fact that she was underage wasn’t taken into consideration.
# Shaik Anwar Ahamath 2011-07-01 19:29
I cannot understand the posture of our leaders wringing their hands and leaving it to the parents of the dead child to pardon this girl who is totally innocent. We should be demanding a retrial with competent interpreters because she is innocent by several accounts:
1) She was under age.
2) She was hired as a housemaid, not a nanny for which she was untrained, being a child herself.
3) There was no post mortem on the dead child to determine the cause of death.
4) The courts relied on a confession in a language alien to her. Also, Rizana claimed she was beaten and recanted the confession.
5) There were no expert witnesses on either side.
6) It is the parents who are guilty of negligence for entrusting the care of an infant to an untrained housekeeper.
# manel 2011-07-06 15:14
I did not realise that one might call for a retrial in Saudi Arabia until Shaik Anwar Ahamath's email or I would have started to urge one through whatever channels i could find, long ago. We must also stress the fact that NO motive has every been alleged for killing the baby. Early on Mr Al Otaibi seems to have ventured it was "vengeance", but that was not pressed by him. It might also beg the question-- for what.
Readers, please see what president Obama is recently arguing in the case of a man to be executed shortly in Mexicio I think. Obama is citing international law against such execution, which I am sure must apply to Rizana's case here.
# manel 2011-07-04 10:36
Can anyone tell me the difference (apart from the fact that over 100 years separates the commencement of one from the other) between the indentured labour sent from India to Ceylon in the 19th c., & the domestic & other manual labour sent by Sri Lanka to countries in West Asia & elsewhere now.
Dear Sepali (from manel) Has there been anything written/published comparing these two forms of export fo human labour power?