Sports Minister reveals President’s attempt to interfere in SL Cricket

Wednesday, 8 November 2023 00:35 –      – 1671

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe

Sports Minister Roshan Ranasinghe


  • Claims President Wickremesinghe urged him to withdraw appointment of interim committee 
  • Says extent of corruption within SLC is incomprehensible, and it is infested with corrupt persons 
  • Warns important documents at SLC may go missing in coming days following injunction order issued by courts on committee 
  • Accuses SLC’s administrators of issuing cheques worth billions in past few days alone

In a startling turn of events, Minister of Sports Roshan Ranasinghe yesterday revealed attempts made by President Ranil Wickremesinghe to interfere in the former’s attempts to reform Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC).

Speaking in parliament, Ranasinghe claimed that Wickremesinghe had contacted him and pressured him to revoke the appointment of the Sri Lanka Cricket Interim Committee, which Ranasinghe had established in a bid to revamp the Sri Lanka Cricket Board and uplift the sport.

According to reports, the President had become aware of the decision to appoint an interim committee only through media coverage, which may have resulted in his call for it to be withdrawn.

“He demanded that I withdraw the committee’s appointment, warning that if I refused, he would assume control of the sports law,” Ranasinghe said. “I asked him to make a decision according to his preferences after dismissing me, as I will not remove the committee appointed,” he added.

However after the issue was presented at the cabinet meeting on Monday, in which Ranasinghe was also in attendance, a decision was made to establish a four-member sub-committee headed by Foreign Minister Ali Sabry to investigate allegations against SLC.

Ranasinghe said the extent of corruption within the SLC is incomprehensible, and it is infested with corrupt individuals. The Minister accused the SLC’s administrators of issuing cheques worth billions in the past few days, anticipating the appointment of an interim committee.

The Minister also informed Parliament that the floodlights at the Dambulla International Cricket Stadium had been replaced hastily, incurring a cost of Rs. 1.5 billion in the past few days.

Nonetheless, the interim committee, appointed by the Minister, is now currently unable to proceed with its activities, as the Court of Appeal issued a 14-day stay order preventing the government Gazette that appointed the interim committee from coming into effect. This action is based on an appeal filed by SLC President Shammi Silva.

The Minister voiced his apprehensions regarding the court order and said there are concerns surrounding this decision. He also voiced concerns about the potential risk of important documents at SLC going missing during this time period.

The Minister said the people had demanded corruption-free governance through the ‘Aragalaya’ movement, and he took on the role with the belief that he could meet those expectations.