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Jan 12, 2018

Mahinda speaks about bond sales, presidency’s duration & SLPP Featured

In an interview with BBC Sinhala Service, former president Mahinda Rajapaksa has spoken about the Central Bank bond sales, the incumbent’s duration of term, the SLPP that he supports and possible disciplinary action against him by the SLFP among others.

Commenting on the attorney general’s argument that president Maithripala Sirisena’s tenure should be six years, Rajapaksa said he was unconcerned by the matter.

But, if the AG’s argument is accepted by the courts, the Kurunegala district MP said Chandrika Kumaratunga and himself could run for presidency two more times each.

‘Chandrika & I can contest again’

In such an eventuality, contesting against will be considered in due course, he said, adding that his personal opinion was that as per the 19th amendment to the constitution, the term of the presidency could not be six years.

Another remark by the AG that reducing the president’s term could affect the voting rights and the supremacy of the people was played down by Rajapaksa, who said Parliament too, was elected by the people.

Responding to statements by the president and the prime ministers that CB bond sales between 2008 and 2014 too, should be investigated and wrongdoers punished, he said he would fully support such an investigation.

‘PM will be in deeper trouble’

Also noting that ex-CB governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal too, wanted an investigation, Rajapaksa said his opinion was that the prime minister would be in deeper trouble if that happened.

Answering further questions, he said he did not believe the CB bonds were issued without approval by the monetary board during his term as the president and the finance minister.


He also said the only prevailing political force against the government was the SLPP, adding that he would support it and also that he was not its leader.

Following the mini-polls, a need would not arise for the SLPP to join with the SLFP to form administrations in local government bodies, and the SLFP was unlikely to join with the UNP either, said Rajapaksa.

When pointed out that supporting another party while being a SLFP MP is a violation of party discipline, he said it was president Sirisena who violated party policies, leading to the ‘killing’ of the party on January 08.

He added that the incumbent central committee of the SLFP was against the law.

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