A pathetic Gotabaya Rajapaksa appeared before the Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID) on Wednesday and sold down the drain people who worked for him. He pleaded he was clean and not guilty of any offence.
The first part of the questioning, which went on for a total of six hours, was on the procurement of MiG-27 fighter jets for the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF). A nervous Rajapaksa, his hands shivering, said the purchases were done in a proper way. When subjected to deeper questioning he said the person responsible for all those matters was Air Marshal Roshan Gunatileke, who was the Air Force Commander at that time.
Gotabaya said that the former Air Force Commander was responsible “if there were financial irregularities.” He said he was not to be blamed for that. He said people should realize that the war was won because these fighters were there and there should not be any investigations into these matters. In the process Gothabaya forgot that as then functioning Secretary of the Ministry of Defence, he was the Chief Account Officer and was responsible for all financial transactions.
He was also questioned at length on manipulation of shares at Lanka Hospitals Limited, the former Apollo Hospital. There his close friend and front man Dilith Jayaweera had allegedly manipulated shares to go up from Rs 28 to Rs 64. It was thereafter that the shares were sold to an Indian company. Jayaweera had obtained inside information from another director of Lanka Hospitals, Nalaka Godahewa. Both Jayaweera and Godahewa were directors of George Steuarts Securities which were trading at the Colombo Stock Exchange. FCID will now question Godahewa.
When the questioning was over Gota was shivering with nervousness. He called one of his security officers and ordered that his vehicle should be reversed inside the FCID premises so he can avoid the television cameras and media. The men did so and the one time powerful and power hungry Gota, now left helpless and exposed for alleged corrupt activity, left without facing the media. If he is so clean as he claims, why did he not face the questioning and avoid the media asked an onlooker. The onlooker said Gota thinks he is still wielding power and trying to cover up matters. That is why he sought a Supreme Court order.