- Samarasinghe says Amendment Bill has been delayed too long
- Expresses confidence that P’ment will pass Amendments without issue
- Says Amendment needed to recover money lost in Bond scam, provided a court of law determines fraud has been committed
- Admits Sirisena was not able to fight corruption during four years as promised despite many other achievements
By Chathuri Dissanayake
President Maithripala Sirisena will write to the Speaker requesting the Amendment Bill on the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption be taken up for debate without delay, Sri Lanka Freedom Party Spokesperson Mahinda Samarasinghe said yesterday.
“The President will write to the Speaker, requesting that the Amendment that was forwarded to the Parliament after it has been passed in the Cabinet some time ago is taken up for debate. The Speaker then has to forward it to the Party Leaders, who will have to schedule it in the Order papers,” Samarasinghe said, speaking at the weekly media briefing held at SLFP headquarters.
Noting that the Amendment is needed to help recover the money from the Bond scam, Samarasinghe said he sees no reason that any Member of Parliament would block the passing of the Bill. However, he later told Daily FT that recovery of the money said to be lost in the bond scam will be possible only if fraud is proven in a court of law. Noting that there was Rs. 12 billion worth of assets of Perpetual Treasuries Group to recover the losses from the bond scam, Samarasinghe said that there has already been an unacceptable delay in passing the proposed Amendments. Reading out a long list of achievements during Sirisena’s four years of holding office, Samarasinghe claimed the President had however failed to stop corruption during his term. “They are things we couldn’t do, he could not stop corruption,” Samarasinghe admitted. However he noted that the President has taken action on various fronts to fight corruption, noting that he appointed a Commission on SriLankan Airlines and Mihin Airlines to investigate into fraudulent practices.
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