SJB demands punitive measures against those named by SC



Mujibur Rahman speaking to an official of the Presidential Secretariat (pic courtesy SJB)

The Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) yesterday (17) requeted President Ranil Wickremesinghe to stop pensions and all other facilities provided at the taxpayers’ expense to former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and former Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, who served as the Finance Minister at the time ill-fated decisions taken by the then government ruined the economy.

Former SJB Colombo District lawmaker Mijibur Rahman said that the main Opposition would continue to press UNP leader Wickremesinghe on this issue.

Having personally delivered a letter addressed to Saman Ekanayake, Secretary to the President, to the Presidential Secretariat in this regard, the former UNPer told The Island that those who had been faulted by the Supreme Court couldn’t be maintained by the hapless country. Asked whether the SJB had the backing of other Opposition parties in Parliament to pressure the President, Rahman said that Wickremesinghe, in his capacity as the Finance Minister, should consult the Attorney General in this regard.

According to the SJB’s letter, seen by The Island, the Opposition wants the President to take necessary steps to stop pensions, official residences, vehicles, as well as security.

The SJB also demanded that all facilities provided to former Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa, former CBSL Governors Ajith Nivad Cabraal and Prof. W.D. Lakshman, ex presidential secretary and finance secretary Dr. P.B. Jayasundera, former finance secretary S.R. Attygalle and members of the Monetary Board at that time (in addition to ex-officio members CBSL Governor, Finance Secretary, there were three other members Samantha Kumarasinghe, Dr. Ranee Jayamaha and Sanjeewa Jayawardena, PC remained members of the Monetary Board. Appearing before parliamentary watchdog COPE in May last year both explained how they tried to convince other members of the Monetary Board to change their ill-fated strategy.

The letter signed by MP Rahman as the Chairman of the SJB’s Anti-Corruption Movement and its Convenor Niroshan Padukka, requested President Wickremesinghe to appoint a commission to make recommendations pertaining to legal measures that should be taken in terms of the SC ruling (SF)