The State Minister said this joining the debate on the Bond Commission report and PRECIFAC report in parliament today.
“Today it is timely to discuss about the punishment for the offenders of the bond scam rather than just the report. What the general public expect is to see the judicial process expedited and see those responsible brought to book. During the previous election, we promised to appoint a member of the opposition as the COPE Committee Chairman and the Prime Minister honoured his pledge after we established parliament. The Leader of the House then sent this COPE report particularly on the bond issue to the Attorney General,” he said.
“In order to expedite this process, a Presidential Commission was also appointed. There are rogues in every party no doubt, but the difference is that previously, even if perpetrators were identified they were never punished, there were no investigations. However, during the past 10 years too there were Presidential Commissions appointed and I urge the President to submit all these reports to parliament as well for the people to know. Currently, some of these perpetrators have been arrested.”
Wickramaratne noted that not just from 2015, but the bond scam ring from 2008 should be investigated as there have been previous allegations in this regard. However, he said in the past no one could question the leaders and no one was arrested. “But we changed that system. Previously even the judiciary was not independent and it was controlled by an iron fist. These powers even tried to rule parliament with the same iron fist,” he said.
According to the State Minister, the previous regime had utilised the country’s assets for their personal use. “It is very wrong for them to have used the country’s aviation services for their private pleasure. These misappropriations cannot be measured financially. This had a huge negative impact on the country’s airlines and tarnished its image.”