Sept 12, Colombo: Former President and current Kurunegala District MP Mahinda Rajapaksa has accepted that he seriously violated election laws during the period leading up to the 2015 Presidential Election, United National Party Parliamentarian Nalin Bandara says.
Speaking to media yesterday former President Rajapaksa admitted that he issued an order to distribute 'sil' cloth just before the 2015 presidential election.
MP Rajapaksa, speaking to reporters after visiting his former Secretary Lalith Weeratunga and Anusha Palpita in the Welikada Prison, said the two officials were punished for following his order as the executive president.
Former President's Secretary Lalith Weeratunga and the former Director General of the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) Anusha Palpita were found guilty of misappropriating Rs. 650 million of state funds for the reelection campaign of former president Rajapaksa. They were each sentenced to three years of rigorous imprisonment by the Colombo High Court.
MP Rajapaksa said distribution of Sil Cloth was not an offense and that it was a punishment for distributing it during the election season.
Speaking to NewsRadio today, MP Nalin Bandara said the former President Rajapaksa obstructed the independence of the election. He said Rajapaksa received 5.8 million votes in the 2015 Presidential Election through the violation of election laws.
Meanwhile the General Secretary of National Bikkhu Front Wakamulle Uditha thera said that there is no connection between the protection of Buddhism and distributing sil cloths misusing public funds.
Addressing a media briefing held in Colombo yesterday the Thera said these comments are only for the purpose of attempts to move away from the legal structure. The Thera pointed out that the law should equally be enforced on all responsible for misdeeds of previous government as well as the present.