Saijth says ready to resign if proven that he misused state funds
Posted on December 6th, 2023

Courtesy Adaderana

Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa has declared that he stands ready to resign immediately, in the event there is proof that he has utilised state funds for personal reasons.

The Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) leader said this during the parliamentary debate on the Central Cultural Fund (CCF) today (06 Dec.), responding to a claim made by MP Mahindananda Aluthgamage.

Although not directly accusing Premadasa of any wrongdoing, MP Aluthgamage stated that as per the audit reports on the CCF, nearly Rs. 10 billion in funds have been misused.

Our Opposition Leader is also present here today. He was in the Ministry of Cultural Affairs. I am not going to personally sling any mud at him, I will not go to that extent, I am just going to talk about what [the reports] we received at COPE, as part of my duty. A three-judge panel was appointed for audit-related investigations, and they revealed that nearly Rs. 10 billion has been misused, while 1,300 employees outside of the cadre of the Cultural Department were hired, and were paid salaries”, Aluthgamage said.

Rebutting these claims, Premadasa challenged that is there is any written proof that he had misused any state funds for his own private use or for that of his party, he is ready to resign.

The day that there is any proof that I used funds from the Central Cultural Fund, or any other state institution, by way of a written order, for the Rs. 16 million used to renovate the Sirikotha building, I will resign then”, he vowed.

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