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UNP back-benchers call for comprehensive probe

The UNP back-benchers yesterday urged a comprehensive investigation on the Bond market transactions that took place during the second term of the Rajapaksa regime.

Convening a press conference at the Parliament complex yesterday, they identified the controversial telephone records relating to former Perpetual Treasuries Director Arjun Aloysius and a few members of the COPE as the tip of an iceberg.

“Probe with whom Arjun Aloysius has had contacts with since 2008. If Aloysius is wrong then the officers who helped him are also wrong. PTL is a third party. What did the Central Bank officials did till he robbed the CB?” said UNP MP Thushara Indunil.

He said not only the MPs’ telephone conversations but also the calls between the CB officers and the PTL should also come out to light to reach a fair judgement.

“A bank account opened at the Bank of Ceylon in favour of CWG Hambantota 2018 (Pvt.) Ltd has received a total of Rs.200 million from state establishments and another Rs.700 million from private institutions. Perpetual Asset Management has credited Rs.15 million. What could have been the relationship the former Government had with Perpetual Asset Management to donate Rs.15 million? Not only the transactions of the CB but the Siriliya operation, Greek Bonds, hedging, the gem bag of Daisy, SriLankan Airlines, killing of Thajudeen should also be given prominence and investigated,” Indunil said. He requested reveal the names of all 41 MPs alleged to have communicated with Arjun Aloysius.

MP Indunil stated that the UNP established a new culture by two Ministers tendering resignation making way for the investigations to continue and the prime Minister’s voluntary appearance before the Commission.

“COPE Chairman Sunil Handunnetti now cries foul highlighting the telephone records. He had stated that those MPs are not fit to be in the COPE. However, it was Minister Rauff Hakeem who proposed Handunnetti as the COPE Chairman and Deputy Minister Ajith Perera seconded it. Hence, if he has any problem with them being in the Committee, he too has to resign from his post,” he said.

UNP MPs Mujibar Rahuman and J.C.Alawathuwala also spoke.