Judge Malcolm Simmons
The following is a brief extract of a presentation given by Judge Malcolm Simmons to senior judges in Sri Lanka in 2018.
In terms of environmental law and litigation, access to justice plays an important role in holding governments directly accountable for their actions or, more usually, inaction. Access to justice imposes upon governments an obligation to give disclosure on issues they might otherwise wish not to engage in. It also allows citizens to participate more fully in decision-making that has a direct impact on environmental issues thereby allowing interest groups to participate in such discussions on an equal footing. Finally, access to justice permits interested groups to seek redress in circumstances where government action – or inaction – results in environmental harm.