CoPE report presented to Parliament

Thursday, 22 March 2018 00:05 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

By Ashwin Hemmathagama 

– Our Lobby Correspondent

The 5th report of the Committee on Public Enterprises (CoPE) in the first session of the 8th Parliament, which was tabled yesterday in the Parliament included a new feature for the first time where publicity was given to the submission of responses for the directives given by the committee.

Out of 16 state enterprises investigated during the period from 1 March to 30 June 2017, only 10 establishments have responded to the directives while General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University, Lanka Coal Company Ltd., Sri Jayawardenepura General Hospital and Gal-Oya Plantations Ltd. have failed to respond at all. 

Presenting the report in the Parliament, CoPE Chairman and opposition lawmaker Sunil Handunnetti charged the establishments – which have ignored CoPE directives and failed to respond. “This report has a change for the first time where responses received are also evaluated. Out of the 16 establishments, five have responded, 100%, while four have failed to make any reply,” he said.

According to the report presented yesterday by MP Handunnetti, the responsibility of the CoPE to the Parliament is not only by tabling it in the Parliament but also with the implementation of the observations and recommendations of the report ensuring the fiscal accountability. 

“The institutions such as a State Pharmaceutical Corporation, Lanka Coal, Sri Lanka Investment Board, Sri Jayawardenepura Hospital, Institute of National Education and the Foreign Employment Bureau were not mere business enterprises and should be considered as important institutions that support the existence of the way of life of Sri Lankans. I believe this report will be subjected to a meaningful dialogue and the relevant sections will focus their attention to take a course of action upholding the commitment of Parliament to safeguard the public funds,” remarked the Chairman in the report.