The Police Special Task Force (STF) organized a firearms training session at the Katukurunda Police STF Academy Grounds for newly elected parliamentarians without any knowledge of the Speaker of the parliament according to media reports in Colombo.
A senior Police source had told Ceylon Today, that 35 newly elected parliamentarians participated at the training session yesterday (27) at the Academy Grounds inspected by Ranjith Perera of the Police STF. The session will continue today (28) .
The training sessions will train individuals on the basic use of pistols and automatic revolvers.
Meanwhile The Island reports Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, MP, denying any knowledge of a group of newly appointed members seeking personal protection weapons.
Speaker Jayasuriya had further said that he had not been consulted in that regard. When it was pointed out that there couldn’t be any justifiable reason for arming members over six years after the conclusion of the war, Speaker Jayasuriya said that issuance of weapons seemed a continuation of a long standing practice.
Former President JR Jayewardene authorised weapons for members in the wake of the second JVP-led insurgency in the late 80s. The then UNP administration also issued weapons to Provincial Council members as well as selected local government members, reports The Island.
A senior parliamentary official had told The Island that any member wanting to acquire a weapon had to provide a letter from Parliament to the Defence Ministry to justify his or her claim. Asked whether the parliament bear the responsibility for recovering weapons issued to defeated members of parliament, the official stressed that Parliament was not involved in the process.