Now, Mahanama is accused of using dead minister’s name to get a bribe
Posted on May 9th, 2018

By Rathindra KuruwitaCourtesy The Island

President Maithripala Sirisena’s Chief of Staff I. K. Mahanama, who was arrested recently while allegedly taking Rs. 20 million bribe from an Indian investor, is alleged to have abused the late Minister M. K. A. D. S. Gunawardana’s name to solicit bribes,

Mahanama was the Secretary to the Ministry of Lands when M. K. A. D. S. Gunawardana was the minister of lands. The late minister’s son Nalin Gunawardena said yesterday: “I have learned that Mahanama told the Indian investing in Kantale Sugar factory, in 2016, that my father in his death bed, had instructed him to obtain a bribe from the investor. Mahanama has said my father wanted to secure our future with the money. I was my father’s coordinating secretary and I can assure that my father was not involved in any such rackets.”article_image

Executive Director of the Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) Keerthi Tennakoon said that on February 14, 2015, one month after the Good Governance administration came to power, the approval to recommence operations of the Kantale Sugar factory had been given.

“This was to be one of the first large scale projects under the new administration. The investor got the nod from the Cabinet on June 17, 2015. An agreement was signed between MG Sugar and the BoI. One of the conditions of the agreement was that MG Sugar should deposit US $ 10 million with the Sri Lankan government and on August 08, 2015 the company fulfilled that obligation.”

The Minister of Lands at that time was M. K. A. D. S. Gunawardana, who represented the Trincomalee District. The Minister died in January 2016 and was succeeded by John Amaratunga.

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