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Thursday, June 20, 2024

We Would Never Give Up Struggle to Recover Public Funds Robbed – Anura Kumara

Kalutara District JVP Parliamentarian Dr. Nalinda Jayatissa too was present.

Speaking at the press conference the Leader of the JVP said, “After Yoshitha Rajapaksa was arrested and remanded the JVP is being criticized and blamed by various quarters. The JVP carried out a massive dialogue in the country regarding stealing, wasting and misuse of people’s money in billions during the previous regime. After the presidential election on 8th January, 2015 the JVP filed complaints regarding large scale fraudsters who plundered billions of public money to the FCID, CID, Presidential Commission of Inquiry to Investigate and Inquire into Serious Acts of Fraud, Corruption and Abuse of Power, State Resources and Privileges (PRECIFAC), Bribery Commission and all relevant institutions. When investigations were not done properly we took the matter to Parliament and took measures to raise the matter effectively. WE did not stop there – we took to the street s. Hence, it is not necessary to conceal the mediation of the JVP to punish fraudsters and the corrupt. The JVP would take all necessary measures to take fraudsters who plundered public money and take back the public money they stole from the people.

Whose assets did these fraudsters steal? It is the assets of the people. This plunder is not an issue like stealing a bunch of plantains. It is not like Chamal Rajapaksa taking over of a land belonging to Mahinda Rajapaksa by producing a bogus deed. It is not an issue within a family or between several people.   These fraudsters stole or wasted people’s assets. It is money allotted to buy medicines for hospitals on behalf of the people, money that could have used to build a school for the education of our children. All these monies belong to the Treasury. Money collected by taxing dhal or sugar and other commodities. Money paid as tax by people to the Treasury. Also, money that should have gone to the Treasury but was stopped midway through various ‘deals’. Hence, we have a just right to bring these fraudsters before the law. Does any citizen in the country say that legal action should not be taken against these fraudsters? As such, without any difference, without considering whether they are for Rajapaksas or not, without any differences all these fraudsters who stole people’s money should be punished. The JVP would be in the forefront of this just struggle. There are two groups that are on the side of thieves. Either they have plundered public money or those who expect to steal public money. Except these two groups all other citizens should come to the forefront of the struggle to bring fraudsters before the law.

Some interpret these arrests as political revenge. Rajapaksa and his associates are trying to build this opinion. If they look back at the past 10 years they themselves could see what political revenges are. Sripathy Sooriarachchi was a leading figure in the struggle to make Mahinda Rajapaksa the President. He was a deputy minister of that government. However, he resigns from the government on 9th February, 2007. He was arrested on 17th March and was imprisoned. These are political witch hunts.

Mr. Sarath Fonseka contests the Presidential election on 26th January, 2010. Within two weeks a group of Army officers arrest him. He was a civilian retired from Army service. The Army had no right to arrest him. His Secretary Senaka de Silva too was abducted by the Army. At the time both of them did not have any charges against them. They were abducted by Army battalions on official orders from Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. These are called political witch hunts.

A large number of Army captains who were suspected of supporting Sarath Fonseka were sacked. Then Chief Justice Ms. Shirani Bandaranayake gave an order on 31st October, 2012 regarding ‘Divi Neguma’ Act. By 2nd November a charge sheet against her was presented to parliament. By 23rd an investigations was held against her and on 12th January she was sacked from her post. The judges for this ‘case’ were the likes of Wimal Weerawansas. They are the real political witch hunts. Hence, what is happening now are not political witch hunts but punishing fraudsters.

As a result of Avant Garde deal a minister of the government had to resign. There are accusations against several more ministers regarding Avant Garde deal. This government protects fraudsters and the corrupt instead of punishing them. Shiranthi Rajapaksa was summoned to FCID in connection with a financial fraud. Mahinda Rajapaksa had discussions with Ranil and got down FCID officers to where Shiranthi was. Weerawansa was arrested regarding a passport fraud incident. A person arrested for such an offence could be remanded for at least two weeks. However, Mahinda Rajapaksa talked to Ranil and Maithri and got Wimal Weerawansa released. He was also given a new passport. It has been confirmed that the government protects fraudsters and the corrupt.

FCID has completed investigations regarding 35 files. Despite sending the 35 files to the Attorney General, legal matters have been carried out regarding 4 files only. Legal matters have not been completed regarding more than 30 files as Attorney General has not taken decisions. As such, there has not been any political revenge. Investigations are being carried out regarding frauds and corruption. The police had presented information to Kaduwela Courts at more than 20 instances before Yoshitha Rajapaksa was arrested. Hence the arrest is the result of the legal process taken by the judiciary and the police. It is a legal process carried out by the police under power s it has through the Constitution, Penal Code and Criminal Procedure Act.

Now Mahinda Rajapaksa says Carlton Sports Network (CSN) too doesn’t belong to Rajapaksas. If Carlton Pre School belongs to Shiranthi Rajapaksa, Carlton House belongs to Mahinda Rajapaksa and Carlton Rugby belongs to Namal Rajapaksa, how is that Carlton Television Network doesn’t belong to Rajapaksas? It is a fact everybody in the country knows. ‘Carlton’ is Rajapaksas’ brand name. Documents have proved the owner of Carlton TV Network. There are only two questions regarding this Carlton incident. One is how was the fund of Rs.234 million used to launch the CSN channel earned and the other is where did the remaining money in addition to money sent from Singapore come from. We ask Mr. Rajapaksa to say how the money was earned and save his son. How the money was earned cannot be said, if the money is not from Mahinda’s or Yoshitha’s salaries. If it is not the income of Medamulana Walauwwa it should be money belonging to the Treasury. Then it is public money. Why shouldn’t those who robbed public money be punished? According to Money Laundering Act this money could be taken over. Several more investigations are linked to this deal. Presidential Secretariat has paid money for the building of CSN and its staff. Hence, they have misused public assets. As such, investigations could go forward under Public Property Act as well. Also the TV channel has used equipment owned by the state; in importing goods it has cheated Customs. Hence, there are more than enough reasons to take investigations forward. As such, Rajapaksas need not cry, moan or lean against walls.

The JVP would never give up the struggle to take over public assets robbed by fraudsters. This is an issue regarding assets of our people in this country. Only villainous citizens say fraudsters should not be arrested. We totally contribute to the process of arresting fraudsters. That struggle cannot be reversed by mudslinging, threats or tears of fraudsters, their lackeys and the corrupt.”

– Lanka Truth


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