Written by Staff Writer
16 Mar, 2019 | 10:12 pm
COLOMBO (News 1st) – During the fourth day of the committee stage debate on the budget, the attention of the parliament was drawn towards the recent statement made by State Minister Ranjan Ramanayake about certain MPs using narcotic substances.
Commenting on the matter UPFA MP Dullas Alahapperuma said that this statement has resurfaced once again and went onto question the speaker whether or not he had received the information on the matter by Ranjan Ramanayake. The speaker said that he was not in possession of such information even though it was publicized that the information was handed over to the speaker and that therefore on behalf of the reputation of these MPs that he (speaker) should reveal the names.
UPFA MP Susantha Punchinilame said that although he would not comment on the personal life of Ranjan Ramanayake that they suggest that he should not do things as staying inside glass houses and throwing stones since there were instances where his house was burnt down previously.
The State Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs Niroshan Perera addressing the speaker said that the Prime Minister had openly stated that he will conduct an investigation on the matter. He also suggested that the speaker should obtain the committee report and hand it over to the CID for investigations on the matter which will be good for the benefit of the whole country.
Ruling party commentary
However, MPs from the ruling party had quite a different thing to say on the matter.
UNP MP Hesha Vithanage said that although Ranjan Ramanayake is a minister from the ruling party that what he is doing should be stopped because he is setting a bad example to the people and using it as political trick just to get media publicity.
Meanwhile, UNP MP Chaminda Wijesinghe also said that he (Ranjan Ramanayake) is the same as Namal Kumara who continued to sling mud at everyone. He said that since MP Hesha Vithanage had now stood up and retorted on the matter that he (Ranjan Ramanayake) will point fingers at him as well. He also urged the speaker to intervene and stop such people from slinging mud unnecessarily.
However, to all these comments the speaker only said that although he had publicly warned Ranjan Ramanayake to present facts on the matter, that he has not received any reports on this regard.
In the backdrop of such a statement, we would like to point out that on February 18th this year that the State Minister of Highways & Road Development, Ranjan Ramanayake himself had said that he had not only said anything about the MPs who are presently in parliament but had also mentioned of those who were previously in parliament. The State Minister had also said that when he had spoken to the speaker the day before (17th Feb) that he himself had given him (speaker) all the names of such MPs and assured him that he will inform DIG Latiff and the CID.
WE REPORT. YOU DECIDE.
Today, March 16th the state minister responded to all comments and accusations made against his statement in parliament and said that many people including his own friends had criticized his proposal that requested all MPs to obtain a medical test and prove they did not consume cocaine.
He said that on his birthday this year which falls on March 11th that opposition leader Mahinda Rajapaksa had spoken to him over the phone and said that while wishing him for his birthday he had also wished that he may be able to find more and more MPs who consume cocaine. The state minister also pointed out that neither the President or the Prime Minister had wished him.
Ranjan Ramanayake went onto say that after thanking the former President for his wishes that he had pointed out the fact that most cocaine and heroin smugglers are from the Joint Opposition. Ramanayake claims with much responsibility that a majority of ethanol is smuggled into the country by four members who are in the parliament and that three of the four belong to the JO while the other individual belongs to the ruling party.
Ranjan Ramanayake continued to say that if anyone is under the impression that he is smuggling and consuming cocaine that they are welcome to clarify their doubts. He urged that every MP should submit a medical report every six months to parliament.
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