Death of Waters Edge veteran

Sugunapala Medis

Sugunapala Medis of Moratuwa who has authored many books on Buddhist Philosophical topics passed away at the age of 90.His funeral will take place at the Wadduwa cemetery on Wednesday at 4 pm.

Medis began his life as a public servant and turned to be a prominent Social worker and a critic of government action wherever criticism Was necessary. He was the Petitioner in the famous Waters Edge Case where judgment was made with an award of compensation and Costs Of Rs. 500,000.

In the judgment of the waters edge he urged that his rights were violated by the then Secretary to the Treasury Dr. PB Jayasundera With the alienation of the land that was owned by the UDA and divested To a private company for the creation of a private Golf Course where as the State land was meant for public purposes.

In this case one Ronnie Peries was alleged to have made Rs.57 Million in the corrupt deal was ordered to pay 2 Million as compensation. Court further ordered that the flood retention area of the controversial site be restored and recommended that the WatersEdge complex be used to house government offices.

Given the fact that the 1st Respondent actively and successfully lobbied the Cabinet for concessions for Asia Pacific beyond and in excess of the guidelines she herself had promulgated in her capacity as President, it is patently disingenuous for the 1st Respondent to now abdicate responsibility and claim ignorance of the nefariousness of the transaction. Quite simply, it is unacceptable and reprehensible for the 1st Respondent to have made use of the power conferred upon her by the People to advance this Project, and now distance herself from the responsibilities inherent to such power.

Notably, this is not the only instance in which she has interceded in land alienation procedures for the purpose of "actively facilitating,and if not seeking to bypass the appropriate approval process.

According to a Report of Committee of Inquiry delivered on 6th November 2002 regarding, in part, the propriety of alienation of land in Narahenpita to Lifestyle Health Services (Private) Limited, the 1st Respondent issued several pieces of correspondence through which she, inter alia, expressed repeated concern over procedural delays and instructed the BOI to expedite the process of' vesting of the land by"eliminating some of the steps outlined or by accelerating the same."

In the order The Supreme Court further directed the BOI and the SLLR & DC to immediately investigate this dubious alienation and to act forthwith to restore the public purpose for which the said land was acquired especially as the affidavit of the SLLR & DC reveals that several instalments amounting to approximately Rs. 25 Million have not yet been paid. This is of particular importance given the pressing problem of the lack of housing for middle class government officials who reside in Colombo, since no development whatsoever has taken place on this land.... 

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