Written by Tharushan Fernando
25 Feb, 2017 | 8:52 pm
Senior banker Rusiripala Tennakon says that priority should be given to identify the real culprits behind the bond scam, rather than who issued the extra ordinary gazette.
On Thursday , the Presidential Commission to Investigate the Bond Issue adjourned the session till Monday as the Extra-ordinary Gazette published on January 1, 2015 was challenged before the Commission.
When the “Presidential Commission of Inquiry to Investigate and Inquire into the Issuance of Treasury Bonds” convened on Thursday Attorneys representing the Attorney General’s Department pointed out that the Extra-Ordinary Gazette published on January 1, 2015 had hinted on the issuance of bonds to take place later that year.
It was also noted that the gazette had been published bearing the signature of then Minister of Finance Mahinda Rajapaksa by virtue of the powers vested in him by the Registered Stock and Securities Ordinance.
When inquiries were made about the matter, the Secretary to the Ministry of Finance said he was not aware of such a gazette.
The Commission adjourned its sessions to Monday ordering for a report from the Government Printer.
Former President,Mahinda Rajapaksa said that he is seeking legal advice to file a case against the Finance Ministry and the Central bank. He claims that he cannot be held accountable since his tenure as the Minister of Finance ended on January 9.
“I am currently seeking legal advice to file cases against the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank. After the 9th, I was not the Minister of Finance. Therefore, I am hoping to file cases against this”, he said.
UPFA MP,Dullas Alahapperuma charged that the Bond Issue took place on the February 25, 2015 but the Gazette was announced on Sepember 15, September 2015.
“… The Bond Issue took place on the 25th of February. The gazette was announced on the 15th of September 2015. Whose signature does it bear ? . In the village we call them the next level rogues. They are trying to say that Mahinda Rajapaksa committed the bond scam …”
The Anti Corruption Front today called on Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to file a police complaint against the Central Bank officials, The Secretary of the Minister of Finance and the Finance Minister if he had not signed an impugned gazette that set up the controversial bond sale.
In a statement, Keerthi Tennakoon , Consultant to the Anti-Corruption Front said he did not believe Rajapaksa had issued the gazette relating to the Central Bank Bond Scam, which is considered as the largest financial fraud to have ever taken place in the history of the country.
Tennakoon pointed out that according to this gazette paper, it is evident that ‘they’ knew that bonds for 1 million 10 thousand and 58 rupees will be accepted at an interest rate of 12.5 % but this is not something that can take place because the purchase value is usually an approximate value, and the exact value of the interest rate cannot be predicted.
“You cannot predict the exact value of the interest rate. No expert can do that”, he said
When the documentation with regard to the bond was being put together, Mahinda Rajapaksa was not the Minister of Finance. And as per the normal process the deputy governor, on behalf of the CBSL, must notify the ministry Secretary – and the Secretary of the Ministry of Finance is the person who would get the signature of the minister and the signature for an event that took place in March 2015 should be obtained by the minister of finance who was holding office at that time, and not the previous minister of finance, according to Tennakoon.
“It is clear that they are trying to make the public believe that former president Mahinda Rajapaksa is connected to the Bond Scam. This is a cunning act to get that idea across. There is a possibility that the attention can be drawn away from the real culprits of the bond scam because of this.”
Government Printer, Gangani Kalpani Liyanage stated that the report with regard to the extra ordinary gazette in question has been prepared, and that it will be produced to the Presidential Commission of inquiry on Monday.
She added that the commission has raised several questions with regard to the extra ordinary gazette notification and that the answers have been included in the report.
News 1st also inquired into the matter from the Secretary of the Presidential Commission Sumathipala Udugamsuriya.
Udugamsuriya stated that a decision can be reached once the report of the Government Printer is produced before the commission on Monday.
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