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Last updateSat, 23 Sep 2017 1pm

Local News

Minister Rajitha Senaratne says former President Mahinda Rajapaksa can be prosecuted over his admission to having given the order to distribute ‘Sil Cloth’ during the previous Presidential elections.

Co-Cabinet Spokesperson, Dr. Rajitha Senarathna said former President Mahinda Rajapaksa can be taken to courts over his admission to having given the order to distribute ‘Sil Cloth’ during the previous Presidential elections. The former President and current Kurunegala MP who visited his former Secretary, Lalith Weeratunga and Anusha Palpita in Welikada Prison, said the two were sentenced for having followed his orders. Weeratunga and the former Telecommunications Regulatory Commission, Director General Palpita were found guilty of misappropriating Rs.650 million of state funds during Rajapaksa’s re-election campaign. Minister Senaratne however pointed out that Rajapaksa’s statement came in a little too late. “He should have made the statement earlier when the case was heard for 24 days, not after visiting Welikada”, he said addressing the weekly Cabinet media briefing yesterday. But this statement comes at a time when the 19th Amendment to the Constitution removed the Executive’s immunity under the law and all former and incumbent Presidents are liable for prosecution in a court of law. Minister Senaratne added that the former president can even face contempt of court charges for questioning the verdict. The Minister pointed out that on September 11, 2014, during the Uva elections, the Elections Commissioner had warned the government over distributing various goods to the people, and a special note was made on the distribution of ‘Sil cloth’ on that occasion too.

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