Oct 29, Colombo: Central Province Governor Lalith U. Gamage has suspended the current chairman of the Talawakelle Lindula Urban Council Asoka Sepala with immediate effect from Wednesday (28).
A special commission has been appointed to investigate eight alleged corruption scandals committed by the chairman and his chairmanship has been suspended pending the completion of the probe.
Talawakelle Lindula UC Chairman Asoka Sepala said that a Municipal Councilor had lodged a complaint with the Central Province Governor and the Commissioner of Local Government in May 2019 regarding eight allegations.
He said the complaint was investigated but a commission had been appointed to re-investigate the same allegations without submitting the inquiry report of the investigation and his post had been suspended.
Mr. Sepala said the suspension was merely a political revenge and that he would face any trial.
Mr. Asoka Sepala said he has been charged with eight counts, including unauthorized recruitment of employees, temporary lease of lands and buildings owned by the Municipal Council without implementing a formal tender procedure, calling for tenders without proper procedures, failure to take action to stop unauthorized constructions within the Municipal Council boundaries, and appointing a secretary to the Municipal Council illegally.
At the last local government polls, Asoka Sepala was elected to the Lindula Urban Council contesting independently. Later he became the Chairman of the Council under the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP). However, he along with ten members of the council have obtained membership of the United National Party (UNP) in March 2019. With the change in party affiliation of the members, the Talawakelle-Lindula Urban Council was established as a UNP Urban Council.