Colombo, January 13: A key coalition partner of Sri Lanka’s new president has urged the country’s graft watchdog to probe former president Mahinda Rajapaksa and his family members. The Jatha Vimukthi Peramu (JVP) party made the complaint to the Bribery and Corruption Commission demanding that 11 individuals and an institution be investigated for mass scale corruption, Xinhua reported.
Those on the list included Rajapaksa and his two brothers Basil and Gothabaya — who were the economic development minister and the defence secretary respectively. The former president’s eldest son mal Rajapaksa, who remains a MP, was also on the list along with sports broadcaster Carlton Sports Network of which he is a director.
Other officials include former central bank governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal, who has been accused by the JVP for the loss of $15.5 million in Greek bonds in the global fincial crisis. Sri Lanka’s opposition had severely criticized the central bank for investing in what was termed as “junk bonds” of Greece in the aftermath of the euro crisis.
Sri Lanka reportedly invested over 30 million euro in Greek junk bonds April 5, 2011 and lost an estimated $15.5 million, according to newly appointed State Minister of Fince Harsha de Silva. Cabraal has also been implicated in a series of contracts to hedge a portion of its oil imports beginning in 2007. Rajapaksa was defeated in last week’s presidential election. His former cabinet member Maithripala Sirise took oath as the new president of Sri Lanka on January 9. (IANS)