|Thursday, 11 March 2004|
SB to meet President's challenge - G. L. Peiris
by Manjula Fernando
Speaking at a UNP media briefing attended by Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris and Advisor to Tertiary Education and Training Minister Dr. Wickrema Weerasooriya, Prof. Peiris said the President had said she would withdraw her immunity and dared the Samurdhi Minister to sue her if the allegation is false.
"We hope that she would waive her immunity as promised since Minister Dissanayake is going to sue the President to prove the allegation against him is totally baseless," he said. Referring to recent media reports highlighting alleged bribery and corruption by Ministers Ravi Karunanayake and S. B. Dissanayake, Prof. Peiris said not only Dissanayake but Karunanayake will also join into take the President to court.
Dr. Weerasooriya said Minister Kabeer Hashim will go to courts to demand an apology from the State media over a news report linking him with a cigarette smuggling case.
Dr. Weerasooriya said the vehicle used to transport the smuggled cigarettes was not owned by Minister Hashim as allegedly reported in the media and police reports corroborate this.
Prof. Pieris denied reports that Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has appealed for Indian intervention to settle the present crisis in the LTTE.
He said they see the LTTE dispute as an internal matter that should be resolved by themselves and as such the Government had no intention of intervening. "I can clearly state that Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has made no such request from the Indian authorities," Prof. Peiris emphasised adding that the Government had no wish to gain political milage from the situation.
Prof. Peiris also warned that southern political parties should not intervene in the matter, wittingly or unwittingly, so as to aggravate the issue further.
Produced by Lake House