Special Cabinet meeting heats up
Posted on June 8th, 2019

By Ruchira Dilan Madusanka Courtesy Ceylon Today

President Maithripala Sirisena, at a hurriedly summoned special Cabinet meeting last night, has warned the Government to immediately stop the Parliamentary Select Committee proceedings on the Easter Sunday attacks.

President Sirisena has also threatened that he will not hold Cabinet meetings if the Government is determined to continue with the PSC proceedings. He had threatened to do so following a heated argument with a few Ministers during the Cabinet meeting.

You have appointed Malalgoda Committee to probe this. It was also promised to submit the report in two weeks. Forget about making it public, the report has not even been presented to Parliament,” one Minister had pointed out.

The President has said that the report would come to Parliament at the right time.

Those reports will be presented in Parliament in due course. There are five cases filed in the Supreme Court in connection with the Easter Sunday bomb attacks, and I have also been connected to it. If this is the way you are going to act by opening PSC proceedings to media and divulging sensitive security information to public, I will not hold the Cabinet meeting hereafter. I will also not attend any of the Government functions or programmes. You act on your own accord and I shall not support the Government,” the President has reprimanded the Cabinet.

He has also said that it is absolutely unacceptable for the intelligence officers to be summoned before the PSC and he would not let information pertaining to national security be compromised through the media.

He had also taken Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to task for not presenting a memorandum he sent, in which the President had shared the sentiments expressed by the Attorney General. He pointed out that the Attorney General had informed him about the implications the information revealed in the PSC could have on the pending cases and had requested necessary action.

I sent it to the Speaker but it is disappointing that he chose not to present it in Parliament,” he added.

He also said that he can even give the information he has to all the MPs even if the 225 of them came to him seeking that information.

He also said that he could not understand why the Government Ministers do not understand the gravity of information being revealed in this manner and what threat it poses to national security.

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