Ravi thanks President for absolving him and PM

Published : 9:10 am  January 25, 2018 | No comments so far |  | 

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  • Says Central Bank and Bond Issue did not come under his purview
  • Says Commission confirms that he had no connection to Perpetual Treasuries

 

 Life-2UNP MP Ravi Karunanayake in a statement yesterday thanked President Maithripala Sirisena for appointing the Presidential Commission of Inquiry on the bond issue after the formation of the good governance government and through its final report for absolving the UNP, the Prime Minister and especially him from all allegations levelled. 

He released the statement to the media after he was denied the opportunity to do so in Parliament. The MP referred to the President’s statement on the bond report where he said, “The report mentions the responsibility of former minister Ravi Karunanayake regarding the rent payments for a penthouse apartment by Walt and Row Company owned and controlled by the Aloysius family. The report states that a legal case should be filed against him under the Bribery Act as well as under the Penal Code for giving false statements to the Commission.”   


Mr. Karunanayake contradicted this part of the President statement and said the report, made available to him, only said relevant authorities should look into them if there was any wrongdoing and if such wrongdoing were discovered then appropriate action should be taken in this regard.   


“This is indeed a bizarre situation. It is as if during a game of cricket the batsman lets a wide delivery be, only to be declared as dismissed by the Umpire,” he said and added that the media campaign launched against me by connecting me to the controversial bond issue is in fact a planned conspiracy.   


image_1516818140-b2c4eee598“Certain politicians and media outlets carried out major propaganda campaigns claiming that as the former finance minister, I advised state banks regarding treasury bond transactions thereby making the government incur serious losses in revenue. 


“However, the commission says a completely different story. I would like to bring your attention to Page 838 of the report. 


It says the following: 


We have earlier, concluded that, in view of the undesirably high Yield Rates which then prevailed. It was reasonable and justifiable for Ravi Karunanayake to wish to bring these Yield Rates down at these Treasury Bond Auctions. We have also taken the view that, since successive Governments have been known to use the state-owned People’s Bank, National Savings Bank and Bank of Ceylon to implement some policy measures and it is not per se irregular for a Government to do so, we cannot find fault with Ravi Karunanayake as the then Minister of Finance for convening these meetings and giving the aforesaid instructions to the three State Banks.   


He said, “An extensive propaganda campaign was carried out claiming that I instructed the Central Bank. However the commission has now rejected all these statements. However, he said the Commission’s report said otherwise.   

 

The commission in its report more importantly accepts that the Central Bank or the Treasury bond issue was not under my control or influence at the time


Quoting the report, he said, “However, we have also earlier concluded that, there is no evidence before us which suggests that Ravi Karunanayake or the Ministry of Finance advised the CBSL that the aforesaid instructions had been given to the three State Banks”.    


He said, “The commission in its report more importantly accepts that the Central Bank or the Treasury bond issue was not under my control or influence at the time.The commission has confirmed that I have no connection to Perpetual Treasuries or another party receiving a profit from the purchase and sale of treasury bonds. 


The commission does not report of evidence regarding any wrongdoing and/or illegal on my part with regards to the sale of bonds by the Central Bank and/or the purchase of these bonds by a primary dealer.    


Drawing the attention to number 25 on page 922 of the report, he quoted :


“As stated earlier in Chapter 24, we also recommend that Attorney General and other appropriate authorities consider whether some of the evidence given by Hon. Ravi Karunanayake, MP before us is shown to have been incorrect and, if that is the case, whether Mr. Karunanayake should be prosecuted under Section 179 and/or Section 188 of the Penal Code or other relevant provision of the Law, read with Section 9 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act No. 17 of 1948”   


Here the commission  merely says: “The Attorney General and other appropriate authorities consider whether some of the evidence given by Hon. Ravi Karunanayake, MP before us is shown to have been incorrect and, if that is the case, whether Mr. Karunanayake should be prosecuted”.   


It does not ask for a case to be filed. This is a conspiracy that goes even beyond.   

 

An extensive propaganda campaign was carried out claiming that I instructed the Central Bank. However the commission has now rejected all these statements


image_1516818140-b2c4eee598In the statement written for the President it says legal action should be taken against me for giving false evidence to the commission. However the report does not say I have given false evidence. It recommends that the Attorney General and other authorities should consider if the evidence given by me appears to be false and if so then it should be decided if legal action should be taken against me.   
In the end the only relevant issue related to me is the Rs. 11 million borrowed by my daughter in order to make a rental payment for her company which was later repaid. I now bring page 827 of Chapter 24 in the report to your attention. Page 827 says Mr. Karunanayake did not produce any evidence to show that any reimbursements had taken place by my family to Walt and Row Associates (Pvt) Ltd. That the repayment of the money cannot be proved. However according to page 832 in my answer I have said “I got the receipt here that the reimbursement has taken place” as shown by the report. While I presented the receipt on the day however no effort was taken to investigate further on it. 


While I am unable to say why this was not checked however it is unfair to level allegations against me after failing to look in to the receipt even after it was presented to the commission. I am not able to say what sort of Presidential Commission this is. But if this is how they operate I must say that I have been prejudiced against even after providing receipts for a reimbursed payment done by my daughter.   


He questioned as to why investigations did not commence regarding the deals related to the previous rule. 

 

As stated earlier in Chapter 24, we also recommend that Attorney General and other appropriate authorities consider whether some of the evidence given by Hon. Ravi Karunanayake, MP before us is shown to have been incorrect and, if that is the case, whether Mr. Karunanayake should be prosecuted under Section 179 and/or Section 188 of the Penal Code or other relevant provision of the Law, read with Section 9 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act No. 17 of 1948


He cited the cases : The loss due to Sri Lanka due to the Hedging deal Rs.  96000 million, Srilankan Airlines loss amounting to Rs. 146000 million,  Mihin Lanka loss amounting to Rs. 12300 million, Greek Bond loss Rs. 3900 million, Cost to construct Mattala Airport Rs. 46000 million, Cost to construct the Nelum Kuluna Rs. 7600 million, Cost to construct the Defence Headquarters Rs.  64000 million, Cost to construct the Hambantota Port Rs.130000 million, The MIG deal Rs. 85000 million, Pyramid transaction loss Rs. 11800 million. 


Finally I would like to end this statement by thanking his Excellency the President; who appointed the presidential commission to look into the bond issue after the forming of the good governance government and through its final report for absolving and releasing the UNP, the Prime Minister and especially myself from all allegations levelled against us. 

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