Lankan Prez says Central Bank “robbery” and Speaker’s conduct made him dissolve parliament and order fresh polls
Posted on November 12th, 2018

Courtesy NewsIn.Asia

Colombo, November 11(  Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena said here on Sunday, that the Ranil Wickremesinghe government’s complicity in the multi-billion rupee Central Bank robbery” and the defiant and questionable conduct of parliament Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, forced  him to dissolve parliament and order fresh elections.

Speaking on Ada Derana TV, the President said: We have seen  several political crises and changes in the past.  But since 1947 we have not seen dissolution of parliament due to issues of corruption.”

The Central Bank robbery after 2015, the involvement in various corrupt practices since then, the political crisis due to attempts to show majority support after the appointment of Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa as Prime Minister and the value placed on Members of Parliament  (in horse trading) were extremely unfortunate developments.”

Lankan Prez says Central Bank “robbery” and Speaker’s conduct made him dissolve parliament and order fresh polls
(Photo shows from Left to Right: Mahinda Rajapaksa, Ranil Wickremesinghe and Maithripala Sirisena. Photo. Getty Images)

All of you will acknowledge what a tragic situation arose when the value of the Members of Parliament, who were elected to represent the people, were commercially evaluated.”

That was one of the main reasons for the dissolution of Parliament.”

The second reason was the most peculiar behavior of the former Speaker, Karu Jyasuriya. I am extremely sad about that. He is a good friend of mine. Speakers of our Parliament since 1947, until now, had conducted themselves in a neutral and most impartial manner. I wish to state, that his behavior of disregarding Standing Orders and Parliamentary Conventions and attempting not to recognize the appointment of a Prime Minister by the President exercising his Presidential powers, was the second reason for dissolving Parliament.”

It appeared to me that, if I allowed the Parliament to be convened on the 14th, without dissolving it, it could have brought about commotion and fights, in every city and every village would lead to very unpleasant and difficult situation for the average citizens of my beloved country.”

As such, the best solution was not to allow those 225 members in the Parliament to fight each other and allow that to develop into a street fights in every part of the country. It is my duty and the responsibility to take democracy to guide us, and create the situation for the fifteen million voters in this country take the ultimate decision by choosing their members to the Parliament through a free and fair election. ”

As such, given the corrupt practices among Parliamentarians as well as the conduct of the Speaker, the best and fair solution to the political crisis that emerged was to allow the people decide in keeping with the principle of democracy. It was with that noble intention of upholding democracy that I dissolved the Parliament. I must state that a permanent and a clear solution to the current situation can be reached through a General Election.”

Central Bank Robbery

The robbery”of the Sri Lankan Central Bank took place when the Finance Ministry was in the hands of a Minister who was in Prime Minister Wickremesinghe’s United National Party (UNP) in the coalition government set up in January 2015.

Wickremesinghe appointed his friend economist Arjuna Mahendran as the Governor of the Central Bank, though the latter was a Singaporean national. Almost as soon as Mahendran assumed office he, entered into shady deals involving his  son-in-law Arjuna Aloysius’  financial, risk and investment firm Perpetual Treasuries Ltd. (PTL).

The PTL used inside information to make a killing in the sale of Treasury Bonds.

The Central Bank had initially advertised for Treasury Bonds to the tune of LKR  1 billion. But  bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran suddenly ordered to accept LKR 10 billion. Arjuna Mahedran’s decision caused interest rates to increase rapidly. PTL with inside information was ready for it and made a killing.

Four months later, Perpetual Treasuries sold the bonds to the government’sr Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) at a higher price. Through this PTL made over LKR 5 billion in profits.

In March 2016, the then Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake instructed  State banks to bid low. State Banks thus suffered an opportunity loss. The EPF also bid low and bought the same bonds from PTL in the secondary market at loss running into millions.

Between 2015 and 2016, the EPF purchased LKR 140 billion worth of Treasury bonds from the secondary market out of which  80 % was from PTL.

PTL had allegedly bribed dealers at the EPF to facilitate the secondary market Treasury Bond sales. PTL had engaged in transactions at the expense of EPF which had the savings of the poor employees in the government and private sectors.

An inquiry set up by the Wickremesinghe government found no wrong doing .But due to persistent demands for an impartial inquiry  a Presidential Commission was appointed which found Aruna Aloysius and his associate Palisena culpable.

Aloysius and Palisena were arrested, and an arrest warrant was issued against Governor Arjuna Mahendra, who had by then resigned and fled to Singapore.

Despite persistent demands, the Wickremesinghe government made no serious attempt to get Mahendran extradited from Singapore.

Conduct of Parliament Speaker

Parliament Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, who belongs to the UNP, refused to recognize the sacking of Ranil Wickremesinghe from the Premiership and the appointment of Mahinda Rajapaksa by thePresident on October 26.

Jayasuriya declared that the sacking of Wickremesinghe was unconstitutional, as according to him, the President had no unbridled power to sack a Prime Minister who enjoyed majority support in parliament.

The Speaker further said that the seat allotted to the Prime Minister in parliament would not  be given to Rajapaksa. He also opposed the prorogation of parliament from October 27 to November 15 and said that he would summon parliament on his own on November 7.

Jayasuriya met Western diplomats and complained about the unconstitutional actions of the President. He also opposed the dissolution of parliament on the grounds that the President had no unbridled power to dissolve parliament under the 19 th. Constitutional Amendment of 2015.


6 Responses to “Lankan Prez says Central Bank “robbery” and Speaker’s conduct made him dissolve parliament and order fresh polls”

  1. Christie Says:

    රට කාපු ආප්පයා නෙලුම් පොහොට්ටුවෙන් පුක පිහදාන්න්නද හදන්නෙ.

  2. Christie Says:

    He is the one who appointed Mahendran as the governor of the central Bank.

  3. Randeniyage Says:

    “රට කාපු ආප්පයා නෙලුම් පොහොට්ටුවෙන් පුක පිහදාන්න්නද හදන්නෙ.” – Agree with Christie.
    How blinded out patriots are by Rajapaksa decease?

  4. Hiranthe Says:

    Doesn’t matter Patriots. We finally got what we were waiting for, an election for MR to get a clear mandate with some fresh and clean MPs, hopefully with a 2/3rd Majority. if everything works out well Run-nil and My3 are both going to be losers at the end of the day.

    MR should also concentrate on North and East this time. There are people who wish to vote for him but without MP’s to vote for, what can they do?.

    I don’t mind even if they get the likes of KP to contest under Pohottuwa. it is democracy and we have to help our Tamil brothers and sisters to come in line with the need of the day.

    Once you have the 2/3rd majority, it is easy to get rid of 13A.

  5. ranjit Says:

    You Mr President did the correct thing by dissolving the parliament before those UNP bank robbers do much damage to our democracy and to the whole country with their lies and make up stories to the outside world. For the sufferings we went through for last three and a half years cannot be just ignored or forget. You were responsible too as same like Ranil. We were angry with you for not taking any action against Ranil and his thieves for most of the mistakes occurred during your tenure in office. I am angry with them for their unacceptable treatment to our Sinhala race, Buddhism and to Maha Sanga. They allowed saboteurs and evil elements to destroy our historical Buddhist cultural heritage and worship places. They allowed our enemies to come and do things as they pleased specially in the North and East. I can write thousands of mistakes you have done together with yahapalana clique to my homeland but I forgive you now because of your courageous decision to oust the Ranil and his Royal thieves and dissolving the parliament and make way for Mahinda Rajapaksa’s return back to his due place as the leader of this blessed land. Do not look back just walk straight to fulfill the dreams of the poor people in this country together with our war hero Mahinda Rajapaksa. We bless you both for a better tomorrow. Let the UNP bank robbers lick the assas of the white man and the Indian parasites while we move forward.

  6. Christie Says:

    It was the Indian block vote that installed Sirisena.

    We have a large Indian colonists here and they have the balance of power.

    First we should stop attacking Sinhala leaders and try and unite ourselves.

    As long as we are divided politically the Indian Parasites and India will run our country and we Sinhalese will disappear.

    For example please do some research about the natives of Fiji, Mauritius, Guyana, etc.

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