PRECIFAC to grill Aluthgamage over misuse of State land

Monday, 26 September 2016 00:01 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

By Shanika Sriyananda

The anti-corruption commission will grill former Sports Minister and Parliamentarian Mahindananda Aluthgamage on Thursday over the alleged misuse of State funds and abuse of power pertaining to the procurement of lands in Nawalapitiya belonging to the Sri Lanka Railways Department (SLRD).

A loss of Rs. 33.3 million has been incurred by the Government due to the establishment of the Mahindananada Aluthgamage Foundation on a 79.5-perch land belonging to the SLRD.

The initial police investigations of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry to Investigate and Inquire into Serious Acts of Fraud, Corruption and Abuse of Power, State Resources and Privileges (PRECIFAC) have found that Aluthgamage has not followed the proper procedure of acquiring land to set up the foundation.

He was first questioned by a team of police investigators led by ASP Lalith Abeysekara and assisted by the Chief Inspector Geethika Bodhipaksa and Inspector Anuradha. It was revealed that 12 houses of SLRD employees were also leased out by him from 2005-2010 but no lease was paid since 2010 after the lease agreement was over.  

“While occupying three buildings of the SLDR, a house was built under his instructions on 6.5 perches of land without following any procedures of the SLRD. When constructing a building on SLDR land, a lengthy process should be followed but nothing was followed when establishing this foundation,” PRECIFAC sources told Daily FT.

Aluthgamage is expected to testify before the PRECIFAC commissioners - High Court judges Padman Surasena, Piyasena Ranasinghe and Gihan Kulatunga and former Auditor General B.A. Premathilake – at a public hearing to be held at the BMICH.

Summons have also been sent to the former SLRD General Manager Vijaya Amarasinghe, the present General Manager B.A.P. Ariyaratne, Vice Chairman of the Nawalapitiya Municipal Council Dulanga Harshana and a few other officials of the SLRD to appear before the public hearing of the PRECIFAC on 29 September.