Presidential Commission denies tapping phones of MPs

The Presidential Commission investigating the alleged treasury bond scam has denied claims of phone tapping of Parliamentarians.

Leader of the House Lakshman Kiriella told Parliament today that the privileges of Parliamentarians had been violated by the Presidential Commission as the mobile phones of some Parliamentarians had been tapped.

He said that the Presidential Commission or the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) should have obtained the approval of the Speaker before obtaining details of telephone conversations of Parliamentarians.

“We are not against investigations but this information should not have been made public,” he said.

However the Presidential Commission insisted that the telephone records of any member of Parliament were not obtained and were not examined.

The commission however said that based on the provisions of the Commissions of Inquiry Act, the mobile telephones and other electronic devices used by Arjun Aloysius and former Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran were examined by the CID.

The commission said that the data was obtained lawfully from the telecommunication service providers.

According to the Presidential Commission, the identities of persons who had telephonic or electronic communications with Arjun Aloysius and Arjuna Mahendran were ascertained where the Attorney General’s Department, which is assisting the commission, considered that doing so was relevant to the mandate given to the commission.

The commission recently revealed the names of some COPE members who had spoken to Arjun Aloysius while investigations into the alleged treasury bond scam were underway. (Colombo Gazette)

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