Match at Hulftsdorp
Posted on November 19th, 2017

Editorial Courtesy The Island

Monday, November 20th, 2017

The government is left with egg on its face, having done its damnedest to cover up the bond scams, but in vain. It, initially, ordered a sham probe in an abortive bid to hoodwink the public and unleashed its propaganda hounds on its critics who flagged the issue. Today, everybody knows that some yahapalana cronies have made huge profits through fraudulent Treasury bond transactions.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe is scheduled to appear before the presidential commission of inquiry probing bond scams, today. All eyes are on commission proceedings.

Meanwhile, some UNP MPs are reeling from the findings of a CID probe into their links with Arjun Aloysius, the owner of the Perpetual Treasures Pvt. Ltd (PTL), involved in the bond scams. Pretending to be the victims of a political witch-hunt, they claim they have been singled out whereas about 40 MPs have received calls from Aloysius.

Let these protesting politicians be told that the problem is not MPs calling Aloysius or receiving calls from him. The problem is that some of the COPE (Committee on Public Enterprises) members called him and/or were called by him while they were conducting a parliamentary investigation into bond scams his company was held responsible for.

The Joint Opposition (JO) is flogging the telephone issue hard and baying for blood in a bid to gain political mileage. What moral right does it have to do so? Its cantankerous members did not make a whimper when it was revealed, while they were in power, that the then Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne had issued a letter to the Customs, requesting priority clearance for a container, which was later found to contain a massive haul of heroin. The CID did not probe the PM, who should have been arrested, interrogated and remanded pending investigations. We, in this space, called for legal action against Jayaratne, but to no avail.

In a country, burdened with ‘governments of rogues by rogues for rogues’, any citizen, in his proper senses, needs a national government like a hole in the head. For, the coming together of inveterate thieves of all political stripes is bad for the people. Between the Jan. 2015 regime change and the general election that followed a few months later, the UNP and the SLFP, having formed a national government, got on like a house on fire and, together, covered up the first bond scam (Feb. 2015). President Maithripala Sirisena prevented a COPE report on that mega financial crime being presented to Parliament. Thus, he ensured that the damning COPE findings would not have an adverse impact on the UNP’s general election campaign. He wanted the UNP to win so as to thwart his bete noire, Mahinda Rajapaksa’s attempt to make a comeback as the Prime Minister and claw his way up through the political rubble. If President Sirisena had acted out of principle rather than expediency, letting the COPE findings be publicised, people would have been able to make an informed decision at the August 2015 general election, and the second bond scam could have been prevented in 2016. However, he deserves the credit for appointing the current presidential commission which has dug much deeper into the bond scams than the COPE headed by JVP MP Sunil Handunnetti.

It was the relentless efforts by a section of the media, intrepid Central Bank officials and a handful of courageous Attorney General’s Department counsel, backed by some CID officers of integrity that helped prevent the truth anent the bond scams being suppressed. The government shamelessly continues to defend the bond racketeers. It is flaying Senior Additional Solicitor General Dappula de Livera et al for not giving the rogues who appear before the bond commission kid glove treatment. The errant COPE members are out for the scalps of the CID officers who obtained their call data. The police did not release their findings to the media. A document pertaining to the telephone calls at issue was placed before the bond commission and the media picked it up.

The ground was craftily prepared for Attorney General Jayantha Jayasuriya’s cameo performance before the bond commission today. He is expected to lead the PM’s evidence. Government propaganda hit men demonised De Livera et al as persons who couldn’t question witnesses in a decent manner.

Everybody will be watching today’s match, as it were, to be played at Hulftsdorp, where a batting wicket is believed to have been prepared. The ball is expected to be tossed. De Livera, the much-feared pacie, known for his toe crushing yokers, won’t be played today, we are told. Cheerleaders are ready. But, let the yahapalana worthies be urged to bear in mind that it is not the decisions of the two umpires on the field that matter in this encounter but those of the independent third umpire—the discerning public.

3 Responses to “Match at Hulftsdorp”

  1. Dilrook Says:

    JO MPs are doing the right thing by demanding all names of crooks. Telephone tapping is the right thing to do. MPs are not above the law. Their telephones, viber/watsapp, etc. accounts must be monitored.

    All 41 names must be published.

    Well said Editor especially the last sentence.

    [Quote] But, let the yahapalana worthies be urged to bear in mind that it is not the decisions of the two umpires on the field that matter in this encounter but those of the independent third umpire—the discerning public. [Unquote]

    For his part, Sirisena must be appreciated for taking this bold action. This has never happened before in Lankan history. Hopefully he will remain courageous than collapse into his usual timid and backbone-less conduct.

  2. Senerath Says:

    For his part, Sirisena must be appreciated for taking this bold action. This has never happened before in Lankan history. “– Dilrook
    Yes. That is TRUE.
    We don’t have to consider the NAME or PAST behaviour if someone is doing the RIGHT thing. Let him eat APPPA or eat JARAWA, if he is doing the right thing right now we should always praise him.

    This is a HISTORIC incident and this AS IMPORTANT as the LTTE war.
    Why ?
    Becuase this is the ROOT of all problems. LTTE war happened becuase of this.

    Every appearent ‘reasonable’ person in the parliament is asking for release of contents of these conversations.
    KRIELLA the BIG THIEF making law points.

  3. Senerath Says:

    Ali Baba and 40 theives coming in Merz Benz.
    What a joke this is ? We have so many Mugabes here. Shameless Pal Horu in luxary cars. Whose money is this they are wasting ? Don’t they have anything elese to do ? Why are they coming ?

    This culture need to be stopped at any cost.

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