UPFA wants Parliamentary Select Committee to probe Treasury Bond fiasco

Tuesday, 17 March 2015 01:39 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

By Jayashika Padmasiri The United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) yesterday criticised the committee appointed by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to investigate the controversial Treasury bond fiasco of the Central Bank and requested a Parliamentary Select Committee to be appointed to look into the matter. Opposition Leader Nimal Sripala de Silva, at a media conference held yesterday in Colombo, said that today in Parliament they would hand over documents, calling for a Parliamentary Select Committee, with the signatures of all UPFA members. “The Prime Minister appointed three United National Party (UNP) lawyers for the committee to look into this matter and that is pointless. Those committee members will only give the answers that Ranil wants to hear and no justice will be done. The UNP is trying to hoodwink the people with such actions. Therefore we ask the authorities to have an independent commission for this and to appoint a Parliamentary Select Committee to look into this matter,” he said. Commenting further, he pointed out that the Central Bank Governor Arjun Mahendran was not a Sri Lankan citizen and demanded his resignation saying that with Mahendran present at the Central Bank it would not be possible to conduct a fair and independent investigation. At the media conference the UPFA also revealed that when the committee members who would conduct the investigation were appointed by the Premier, UNP Chairman Malik Samarawickrama had also been present. They claimed that it was unethical for Samarawickrama to have been there. Pic by Upul Abesekara

 TISL calls for transparent inquiry

The Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) has called for a transparency inquiry in to the Treasury Bond fiasco on the part of Central Bank. In a statement, it said TISL was deeply perturbed by the rising concerns over the controversial deals made in Bond market in recent weeks by a firm connected to the son-in-law of the present Central Bank Governor. TISL welcomed the steps taken by both the President and the Prime Minister in appointing two separate committees to probe into the allegations.  TISL claimed there is a clear case of insider dealing which is a form of corruption, which can only be unearthed with a credible investigation. The public has a right to know who were exactly involved in the questionable insider dealing, TISL said. TISL said it was only right that the Governor temporarily steps down from his position to ensure space for an independent probe and that the faith placed upon the Central Bank by the public is respected. The Government has a responsibility to safeguard the highest level of integrity in the Central Bank which is the main regulator in the country. TISL recalled that the controversies involving the Central Bank during the previous Government particularly the previous Governor and stressed the need to move towards a more credible Central Bank.