Launch immediate probe into Sri Lankans exposed by Pandora Papers | Daily News
President orders Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption

Launch immediate probe into Sri Lankans exposed by Pandora Papers

Report called for within one month
Nadesan seeks impartial inquiry

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has ordered the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption to launch an immediate investigation into the Sri Lankans and the related transactions revealed in the Pandora Papers and submit a report in a month.

The Pandora Papers is a collection of nearly 12 million documents that disclosed the hidden offshore activities of international leaders, including current and former presidents, prime ministers, and business leaders. The more than 330 politicians exposed by the leak were from more than 90 countries and territories. They were exposed by journalists of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), working in partnership with media organisations such as the BBC, The Guardian, Washington Post and 150 other media outlets around the world.

More than 600 journalists in 117 countries have been trawling through the files from 14 sources for months, finding stories that were published in the Pandora Papers.

It was published in the international media that according to the Pandora Papers, information has come to light of a Sri Lankan citizen or citizens in relation to maintaining large cash deposits in offshore accounts.

The President has instructed to submit a report on this information within a month from today (06).

Director General of Legal Affairs of the Presidential Secretariat, Attorney-at-Law Harigupta Rohanadeera has informed the Director General of the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption in this regard, in writing as per the order of the President.

Meanwhile, Thirukumar Nadesan, the husband of former Minister Nirupama Rajapaksa, one of two Sri Lankans identified in the Pandora papers exposé, has written to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to declare his innocence and seek an unbiased inquiry. In his letter addressed to President Rajapaksa, he states that “It is commonly believed that all persons whose names have been [divulged in the Pandora papers] are in some way guilty of wrongdoing”.

Adding to that he mentions “I assure you that my wife and I are totally innocent and are guilty of no wrongdoings,” Nadesan stated this in his letter to the President which is also copied to Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Nadesan has urged that the investigation be conducted by an impartial investigator, ideally a former appellate court judge, in order to cleanse his and his wife’s reputation. “I am making this request to you because my wife and I have suffered heartache and pain of mind. We have been presumed guilty, the presumption of innocence reversed,” he wrote.

On Tuesday (05), the opposition Samagi Jana Balavegaya (SJB) has also demanded an investigation into the Pandora Papers which has caused much controversy in the country. Several other countries have already begun investigations into the revelations of the Pandora Papers, which have stirred a hornet’s nest around the world.

The Pandora Papers were preceded by the Panama Papers and the Paradise Papers, which detailed similar findings.

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