Ex Srilankan Directors to be arrested before Elections?

Srilanka’s national carrier, that once offered a “taste of paradise” to srilankans, has been living on Treasury handouts for the last 12 months. The enormity of its mismanaged and financial debacle was known 24 months ago. But so far nothing has been done by the government to prosecute the womanizing former Chairman Wickramasinghe, the CEO Kapila, or Directors like JKH Chairman Susantha Rathnayake. Chairman, Watawala Plantations Sunil Wijesinghe, President's Counsel Jayamane, Mounntlavania Hotel Chairman Ukwatte, a person who benefited  from the Rajapakse era. These directors were known to have partied with Wickremasinghe on a regular basis. In return they allowed Wickremasinghe to party with the Srilankan funds.

The Board of Directors allowed the Chairman to push through deals worth billions without having any proper evaluation or tender procedure. The audit Committee headed by Rathnayake according to the Weliamuna report had ignored all basic requirements of an audit Committee. The investigative report clearly faults the Board and the audit Committee - the only deterrent to prevent the misuse of public funds. Because of the mismanagement of the Directors today Srilankan is in a right royal mess. How people like Rathnayake and Wijesinha can hold positions in top private sector companies like John Keels is a mystery, after causing losses of billions to tax payers of this country.

Analysts say the Board of Directors of Srilankan had a responsibility and fiduciary duty to look after the interests of the Airline and to ensure that no misappropriation, corruption or bribery is taking place. But for the free tickets they were willing to ignore the Rajapaksa excesses.

The former Srilankan Board was responsible for approving all the proposals put forward by the former Chairman to purchase aircraft. The former Board of Directors therefore are as guilty for aiding and abetting in approving the airbus contracts by bypassing established Company tender procedures as much as the Chairman and the CEO.

According CID sources and FCID the investigations are now complete and a request would be made soon to produce people like Nisthantha Wickremarasinge, Susantha Rathnayake, Kapila Chandresena and the others in court. The offense they say is a non bailable offense. The public is keen to see these white collar criminals behind bars.

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