Quick recap on 4 years of the bond scam

by Staff Writer 27-02-2019 | 8:53 PM
COLOMBO (News 1st) - Today(February 27) marks the 4th anniversary of the infamous bond auction and scam of February 27th, 2015. Four years ago the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, under Governor Arjuna Mahendran, advertised a bond of Rs 1bn for 30 years. The governor decided to increase the value up to Rs. 20bn following the auction. As there was strong resistance from the Central Bank officials it was narrowed down to Rs.10bn. As public unrest grew and the media probed into the matter the Prime Minister's attention was focussed on the issue. He responded with a speech on March 17th 2015, and he appointed a committee of his own; the Pitipana Committee to probe into the matter. Despite all the suspicions and concerns, the Pitipana Committee reported that the former governor, Arjun Mahendran was innocent. On the day the DEW Gunasekera COPE report was to be tabled in parliament, fortunately for the perpetrators of the bond scam, parliament was dissolved on June 26th 2015. It was later exposed that one of the key features of the COPE report was that Arjuna Mahendran, under oath, stated that he had "only followed the Prime Minister's instructions." Three months following the parliamentary elections Sunil Handunetti was appointed as the Chairman of COPE. In October 2016 the UNP members of COPE signed off the report but added footnotes challenging some of the conclusions of the COPE report. Consequently, on January 27th 2017, President Sirisena appointed a Presidential Commission of Inquiry to look into the issuance of bonds and the commission took 11 months to compile a report and hand it over to the President which was later submitted to the Attorney General. The Commission of Inquiry recommended that legal action be exercised against those accountable for the scam. Arjuna Mahendran, is to be produced before courts ever since and is allegedly at large in Singapore. Arjun Alosious and Kasun Palisena of Perpetual Treasuries Limited who were affiliated with the scam were detained at the Colombo Remand Prison for almost ten long months and were released this year(2019). While the perpetrators have dodged the law, it is believed a few among them even govern the country. The public should never forget this heinous crime against the citizens of this country, disguised perpetrators like these should be brought to justice to avoid recurrance of crimes of this nature. Although it's been a while since the abominable crime against the people of Sri Lanka took place it is ignorant to think that the people will ever forget this.