Fundamental Rights petition challenging COPE report re-fixed for support

 

The Fundamental Rights petition filed by Ven. Thiniyawala Palitha Thero challenging the various findings and statements made in a report prepared by the Committee on  Public  Enterprises (COPE) regarding the bond issues of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka in the year of 2015 and 2016 was re-fixed for support on September 8 by Supreme Court today.

When the petition came up before three-judge-bench headed by Justice Buwaneka Aluvihare, the Court was informed that several COPE committee members were yet to appear in Courts as respondents.

The petitioner Vice Secretary of the Sri Lanka Mahabodhi Society  Ven. Thiniyawala Palitha  Thero had cited 26 members  of  COPE including its chairman Sunil Hadunnetti who were tasked  by  Parliament  of  Sri  Lanka to investigate and  report  on  matters  pertaining  to  certain  Treasury  bond  auctions, the  Monetary  Board  of  the  Central  Bank, the  Governor  of  the  CBSL,  Chairman  of  the  Tender  Committee  of the CBSL and Superintendent of the Public Debt Department of the CBSL, the  Auditor  General  of  Sri  Lanka and the Attorney General as respondents in the petition.

The petitioner stated that consequent  to  being  elected  in  September  2015,  Parliament  of  Sri  Lanka appointed  the members  of  COPE  to conduct  an  investigation  into  certain Central  Bank  auctions  of  Treasury  Bonds which occurred in February 2015 and March 2016.

The  members  of  COPE  have  submitted  their  final  report  to  Parliament  on  or  about  28  October  2016.

The said COPE report maintains that; the  1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 9th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th  18th, 21st, 22nd, 24th and 26th  Respondents  agreed  to  the  said COPE report  in  general  without  the  footnotes.

The  6th,7th,  8th, 10th, 11th, 13th, 20th, 23rd and 25th  Respondents  agreed  to the  said  COPE  report  with the footnotes.

The all members of the committee (i.e. the 1st to 26th  respondents)  unanimously  agreed  to  the recommendations given at the end of the report.  

The  Petitioner  expressly  pleads  that  notwithstanding  that  the  said  COPE  report  was  presented  to  Parliament on  or  about  28  October  2016,  the  same  remained  inaccessible  to  the  general  public  and  the  Petitioner  for some  time.  The  Petitioner  pleads  that  the  said  COPE  report  only  became  accessible  to the  Petitioner on or about 24 November 2016. 

In the  circumstances  afore-said,  the  Petitioner  pleads  that  the  Petitioner  could  not  file  this  application  sooner as  the  COPE  report  was  inaccessible  to  him,  and  he  was  not  aware  of  the contents  of  the same,  until  24 November 2016.  14. 

The  Petitioner further  stated that  in  any  event  the  continuous  reliance or  circulation or  actions  of the  said  COPE  report  as  it  presently  stands  amounts  to  a  continuing  infringement  of  the  Petitioner’s fundamental  rights  guaranteed  under  Article  12(1)  of  the Constitution  of  Sri  Lanka,  and  also  amounts  to  a cause which enables the Petitioner to prefer this application in the public interest.   

The  Petitioner  pleads  that  through  the  said  COPE  report, the  Petitioner  and  the  general  public  have been misinformed and misled.  

The  Petitioner said that  in  the  event  that  the  CBSL was  not  properly or  officially or  lawfully issuing  Treasury  Bonds  viz  the  direct/private  placement  from  the month  of  January  2009,  the  proper procedure  that  ought  to  have  been  followed  from  January  2009 was  the Central  Bank  Treasury  bond  auction process.  


There is 1 Comment

Mr Palitha you are an insult to the great leader Lord Buddha. Though you are just covering your body with a yellow robe you should not protect the rogues who are vandalizing our country.

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