Mahinda claims his family being used to deflect attention

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says his family is being used to deflect public attention from corruption allegations raised against the Government.

He says the extent of the panic in the Government is evident in the shrill announcement that special courts will be established to hear cases involving the Rajapaksas.

This week three members of Mahinda Rajapaksa’s family – his wife Shiranthi Rajapaksa and younger sons Yoshitha and Rohitha were questioned by the CID and FCID.

“My wife was asked why the colour of a jeep that had been made available by the Red Cross to her charity SiriliyaSaviya in 2011 and used by the Presidential Secretariat had been changed. International NGOs make their vehicles available to local charities once their projects are over. My wife had told the CID that she knows nothing about the maintenance or repair of vehicles used by the Presidential Secretariat. On Wednesday, the CID obtained a statement from my son Yoshitha on the same matter. He had been asked whether he had given instructions to anyone to change the colour of this vehicle. To this Yohitha had replied in the negative and explained that the transport division of the presidential secretariat maintains the vehicles and gets them painted if necessary. He had been asked whether he had used this jeep as his back up vehicle to which he had replied that it is the PSD that assigns any available vehicle for his back up team and that he had no role in the matter,” Mahinda Rajapaksa said.

He also said that for the first time, his youngest son Rohitha was also hauled before the FCID and was asked whether he was a shareholder of ‘Supreme Sat’ which was the first Sri Lankan company to be involved in the launch of a communications satellite.

“Rohitha had explained that he does not hold any shares in Supreme Sat directly or indirectly and that he was a paid employee of that company with the designation of Technical Director from July 2012 to July 2014 after which he left to concentrate on higher studies. The FCID had thereupon wanted to know whether he had helped Supreme Sat to get their licences. Rohitha had explained that by the time he joined Supreme Sat in 2012, they had already acquired their licence and that he had been introduced to Supreme Sat by a Chinese businessman who had come to South Hampton University in England to recruit new graduates for his company. The satellite that was launched in 2012 is owned by the Chinese Government and Supreme Sat which is a Sri Lankan private sector entity has leased six of the 36 transponders on the satellite with a view to providing satellite communication services to Sri Lankan customers. I have been informed that the main investor in this company is a prominent Singaporean businessman,” Rajapaksa said.

Mahinda Rajapaksa accused the CID and the FCID of being part of the Government propaganda offensive on his family. (Colombo Gazette)



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