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Friday, January 23, 2015 - 05.34 GMT

Government's anti-corruption committee to be headed by PM


The government under the recommendation of the National Executive Council will appoint a committee to probe large scale corruptions occurred during the tenure of the previous government.

Cabinet spokesman and Minister of Health and Indigenous Medicine Dr. Rajitha Senaratne told media at a press briefing Thursday that the cabinet approved the recommendation submitted to form the Anti-Corruption Committee.

The Committee will be headed by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe and comprises Ministers Mangala Samaraweera, Patali Champika Ranawaka, and Rauff Hakeem, parliamentarians Anura Kumara Dissanayake, R. Sampanthan, M. A. Sumanthiran and Democratic Party Leader Sarath Fonseka along with President's Counsel Dr. Jayampathy Wickramaratne, J. C. Weliamuna and Malik Samarawickrema.

Cabinet approval has also been granted to set up an Urgent Response Committee with MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake as the Coordinator. This committee consists with public officials, police officers, lawyers, financial specialists and officials of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

Proposed Short Term Actions include, looking into the items that have been brought for distribution during the Presidential Election period and now being kept in stores, illegal acquisition of lands, and movable and immovable properties, corruption and irregularities at the Employees Provident Fund, and Colombo Stock Exchange and divulge about them, the assets and liabilities of those involved in suspected large scale frauds and taking appropriate action against such acts.

The long term actions are included of taking action to acquire funds relating to fraudulently carried out financial dealings outside the country and to punish those responsible for such dealings, introduction of a more powerful Bribery or Corruption Commission, establishment of a National Procurement Commission and obtaining approval for all projects through this Commission, Introduction of the National Audit Act and Implementation of the UN Anti-Corruption Covenant for which Sri Lanka is a signatory.

The cabinet has been enlightened on the necessity to set up a specially qualified team to investigate into irregularities that are taking place in the financial sector.

The Prime Minister informed the Cabinet that already experts of the Financial Intelligence Unit functioning under the Central Bank of India and experts in this field from the financial institutions including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund have agreed to provide assistance in this connection.

Cabinet has granted approval to appoint a committee to formulate draft legislation to expeditiously introduce an Act with wide allocations to make it compulsory to divulge the sources of hitherto undeclared wealth.

Minister Wijedasa Rajapaksa has been named as the Chairman of this committee. Ministers Patali Champika Ranawaka, Mangala Samaraweera and Rauf Hakeem are the other members.

The Ministers were also requested to submit reports on corruption and malpractices that had taken under each and every Ministry to the office of the Prime Minister as early as possible.





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Last modified: January 23, 2015.

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