'No conflict in unity government' | Daily News

'No conflict in unity government'


There never was any conflict between either the SLFP and UNP nor the President and Prime Minister, Cabinet Spokesman and Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine Minister Rajitha Senaratne said.

He said President Maithripala Sirisena had stated clearly that those who hoped that the government would split, would experience the split and not the government.

"The President also said that those who dreamt of coming to power after being defeated would dream until they attain Nibbana," Minister Senaratne said.

Queried by media personnel on the President's recent statement, the minister said that President Sirisena's statement had been carried in the media with the change of his thought line, adding that the President made a lengthy statement on the media report and his own statement during the Cabinet briefing the previous day.

He made these observations yesterday at the Cabinet briefing at the Information Department auditorium.

The minister stated that even the government media had not carried the news accurately. He said the President had not criticised the Commissions but the actions of the Bribery Commission's Director General and also the Commissioners.

"The President also said that he did not have prior knowledge of the the former Secretary of Defence and three former Commanders were being taken before Court," Minister Senaratne said. "Thereafter, the President went on talking of the three Commanders only, although the associates of Rajapaksa had climbed the seventh heaven."

The minister said the President had said that it was not fair to take the former Commanders on to the dock in uniform along with their decorations. He added that everybody knew that the people were now living in peace due to their dedication.

"The President was of the opinion that the such an incident would cause pain of mind to the members of tri forces," Minister Senaratne said. "As Defence Minister, the President queried as to how he could solicit the support of the tri forces. They would think that the situation was far better during the previous regime."

He also said that Minister Fowzie was questioned by the FCID on an insignificant matter of using a vehicle. He said the President had not been informed earlier, until he was arrested. "He was a minister and was being observed by 15 trainees while he was being questioned," Minister Senaratne said. "He is one of the SLFP members who joined to set up government. What would happen to those others who wished to join the government? He is also a Muslim politician. The Muslims whose rights were deprived during the previous regime are on the alert to see if their rights are guaranteed. They are being questioned to show that government ministers are also being questioned by the FCID."

He also added that the case against former Defence Secretary had been filed in a manner that he be aquitted.

"Still investigations concerning the Mig transaction is not completed. The fraud is US$ 7.5 million. A forged document had been prepared to commit the crime which has yet to be found out as to who in the Defence Ministry had done it."

Minister Senaratne, further stated that he had on many occasions told of the Dubai Bank accounts of the Rajapaksa family members. He added that he was told about those accounts by those Sri Lankans who work there. He also said that nothing had been investigated in that connection. "The Director General of the Bribery Commission had taken a signature of the President on a letter addressed to the King of Dubai to get details of those account," the Minister said. "The procedure was wrong and first a case had to be filed in Sri Lanka under the Money Laundering Act and then approach Dubai after conviction."

"The case filed against Basil Rajapaksa was on some galvanized pipes being granted to provincial governments. The case against Johnston was on a grant of Carrom boards," Minister Senaratne said. "No case had been filed against Johnston's import of Ethanol," Minister Senaratne said. "The house in Malwana in the Basil Rajapaksa case had been ordered to be auctioned. Finally it would be bought by someone of Basil Rajapaksa."

He said that the suspect in the Ekneligoda case is in remand custody for 16 months. He added that the name of Lakhanda Radio was changed without the knowledge of the President as well as of the Media Minister. Questioned by media personnel, the Minister said that there was no conflict between the SLFP and UNP nor between the President and Prime Minister. He added that politicians had nothing to do with those flaws, but added that he did not know if those officers were being guided by some one.

Queried by a media personnel, Minister Senaratne said that he did not believe that forces would conspire against the government. He also said that as the former Defence Secretary and some others could give different opinions to the members of the forces.

Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media Minister Gayantha Karunathilake, Information Director General Dr Ranga Kalansooriya also participated at the Cabinet briefing. 

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