MP Sajin Vass reacts to allegations made by Kunanayakam and Samarasinghe (Video)

MP Sajin Vass reacts to allegations made by Kunanayakam and Samarasinghe (Video)

Written by Ramesh Irugalbandara

17 Oct, 2014 | 7:52 pm

Addressing a media briefing on Friday Monitoring MP of the Ministry of External Affairs Sajin de Vass Gunawardene reaffirmed that he has no clue of an audit report into renovation of  the official residence of Sri Lankan Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva. He stated that he would have no reason to hide it if he received such a report. He went on to note that just because individuals make such allegations, it does not make it true.

UNP MP Sajith Premadasa and the UNP Western Provincial Councillor also shared their views on the matter

See below for transcripts of  statements.

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— That is right. I need to see the report first. Until you brought up this information I was unaware that such a report existed.

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— But aren’t you the Monitoring MP?

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— Although I am the Monitoring MP, I do not look into everything at the Ministry. We have about 50 or 60 embassies. If I go to look into all of them I will have nothing else to do.

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— But you do have a responsibility. The Secretary has a responsibility.

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— As politicians our task is to enact policy. Implementing the foreign policy, there are larger problems.

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— It is the Ministry Secretary’s responsibility to look at whether contracts are being issued in keeping with administrative and financial regulations.

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— Do you not believe that it is disappointing that no investigation was undertaken even after the audit report was prepared?

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— Definitely, when an audit report is conducted the audit report must be submitted to the Ministry Secretary and he must take action.

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— The Auditor General conducts an audit, and just because some factors are mentioned there, it does not mean that they are wrong. That is the truth. When we consider an auditor general’s report, there are ten questions. Asking for cause to be shown. Afterwards there is a procedure. It is the responsibility of the Ministry or the institution to respond to this. We do not know if that has happened or not.

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

–Who says it hasn’t happened?

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–Wasantha Samarasinghe

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— Wasantha Samarasinghe is an opposition member. The government is not bound to respond to an opposition member. We are bound to respond to the treasury.

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— Everyone in this country knows about the LTTE. This matter has taken on such significance because it was given to an LTTE company.

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— An inquiry must be held to determine if it was an LTTE company or not. We need to look into it. What steps have we taken? Give me another two to three days and the truth will come out. I am looking into it now.

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— The name of the Foreign Secretary Kshenuka Seneviratne’s husband has been caught up in this matter. As you say, in the event that an investigation is held into the audit report and a person is found to be guilty, what action will be taken?

It is the same for everyone, there will be no difference. There is a procedure in the country. There are rules and regulations. We will not listen just because an individual says so.

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— Are you saying that Tamara Kunanayakam lied?

MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena

— There are two matters here. One is foreign affairs and the other is international relations. I am mostly involved in international relations. Foreign affairs are a different matter. You must understand this. I do not go to look into whether the Embassy has been plastered and whether buildings have been built. I do not have the time for it and neither do I need to do it. There is a Secretary for that purpose.

 

 

MP Sajith Premadasa

“They used government funds and got a contractor to take care of reconstruction work. Do you know who owns the organisation? An LTTE sympathiser, an individual who was jailed in Geneva for having connections with the LTTE. His company has been contracted for renovation of the Sri Lankan Mission. I am not making these statements; it is stated in a government report compiled by four government officials. Once the renovations are complete they pay this LTTE sympathiser. Whose money is this? It is the money of the general public; this is money of the taxpayers. It is the money of the treasury. Ambassadors are being appointed to protect the sovereignty of our country. Isn’t it frightening that individuals who are appointed to safeguard our country are awarding such contracts to these kind of people? All this is contained in this report. However,  it is yet to see the light of day.”

“As a responsible member of parliament I call on the President to present this report before parliament and immediately take steps to bring the officials who awarded this corrupt contract before court. We also have a responsibility to know the contents of this report compiled by four officials. We need to know who engaged in this corrupt deal? Who were the forces behind this deal?  Whose wants and needs were satisfied through it? Until these revelations are made, we state that the government cannot use words and phrases such as patriotism, love for the nation and individuals who rooted out terrorism from the country. Reveal to the country all deals that you have struck with the LTTE. ”

Western Provincial Councillor  Jayantha Silva

“We saw on the TV last night, that the government which said it was against the LTTE had given the LTTE a contract in Geneva and had given them major support. This must be revealed to the people because now the people have a question. Yesterday on the TV we saw various MPs expressing their views that the government had granted a contract to the LTTE. The truth of this matter must be revealed. The people are waiting to see what the truth is.”

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