Opposition demands anti-graft chief’s sacking

bribeSri Lanka’s main opposition demanded on Tuesday the country’s anti-graft chief be sacked for summoning former president Mahinda Rajapakse to answer bribery allegations amid renewed uproar in parliament.

Opposition lawmaker Bandula Gunawardane told parliament the director general of the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption, Dilrukshi Wickramasinghe, should be dismissed for her “arbitrary action”.

Wickramasinghe has summoned Rajapakse to appear on Friday following a complaint that he paid a bribe of more than 600 million rupees to a lawmaker from the then-opposition to defect ahead of the presidential election in January.

“Today, 113 lawmakers signed a petition asking the speaker to take action to remove Dilrukshi Wickramasinghe,” said Gunawardane, who is from Rajapakse’s faction.

New President Maithripala Sirisena has launched a series of corruption investigations against Rajapakse’s inner circle since ousting him at the election after a decade in power.

Rajapakse’s opposition disrupted parliament for a second day over the summons, holding up passage of Sirisena’s promised reforms to roll back the president’s powers, which were strengthened during the former strongman’s rule.

Hundreds of Rajapakse supporters blocked a main road to parliament, demanding investigations against him be dropped.

Speaker Chamal Rajapakse told parliament that investigators would now visit the former president, rather than insisting on him appearing before the commission on Friday to answer questions. (The News)


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