30 November, 2020

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Absolute Conflict Of Interest: Maithri’s Investigator Weliamuna Must Go

Good governance activists in Sri Lanka urged the Chairman of Transparency International Sri Lanka to resign form all posts he currently holds, including the Special Presidential Task Force for the recovery of illegally acquired state assets.

Weliamuna

Weliamuna

“Just saw the Colombo Telegraph story on the Sri Lankan Airlines inquiry – the Weliamuna report. Extremely disappointed myself. I was under the impression that the work done was voluntary – this is what was told to people with links to Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL). For your information, J. C. Weliamuna is the Chairman of TISL – still. Absolute conflict of interest.” an activist and a staff member of the Transparency International Sri Lanka told Colombo Telegraph last night.

“He must resign from all posts” another staff member and a good governance activist said.

Colombo Telegraph carried two stories ( click here and here) describing that Weliamuna was the former Executive Director of Transparency International Sri Lanka. We apologise for the error.

JC Weliamuna is the Chairman of Transparency International Sri Lanka, co-convener of the Lawyers Collective, Lawyers for democracy and a  key member of the Friday Forum. On 29th of April, he was appointed as a member of the Special Presidential Task Force for the recovery of illegally acquired state assets by President Maithripala Sirisena.

We asked Weliamuna to reveal the amount he was paid to investigate Sri Lankan Airlines – the first government-commissioned inquiry into the previous Rajapaksa regimes’s corruption and malpractices.

Three days ago Weliamuna speaking to Colombo Telegraph confirmed that he along with his team comprising three other members U.H. Palihakkara, B.A.W. Abeywardane and M.K. Bandara were paid Rs 3.5 million. At that time Colombo Telegraph did request for a breakdown from the chairman of Transparency International Sri Lanka, Weliamuna but he was not in a position to do so. A subsequent email was sent to him seeking this information. Weliamuna has not responded to that question as yet. The day before yesterday we emailed Weliamuna once again and requested him to furnish at least the amount he did receive as his fee but he is yet to respond to that question as well.

Previously when we reported the “Colombo Telegraph blockade, the internet provider Dialog Axiata PLC’s and the Jayantha Dhanapala issue“, Weliamuna told Colombo Telegraph, that “Every individual has a right to raise matters of conflict of interest and such matters are generally raised in the public interest (as opposed to private interests). Conflicts can arise in any sphere including private companies and even media organisations and therefore I believe that Colombo Telegraph, like any citizen, has every right to raise it in the public interest.”

TISL website says;

J. C. Weliamuna (Chairman)

Mr. J C Weliamuna is one of Sri Lanka’s leading public interest and Constitutional lawyers, with 24 years active practice. He had appeared in hundreds of leading human rights and constitutional cases including landmark governance related case. He holds a Master of Laws from the University of Colombo, where he served as a visiting lecturer. He is also an Eisenhower and a Senior Ashoka Fellow.

After establishing his legal career in commercial law, Mr. Weliamuna moved into the fields of constitutional and human rights law, and became an active contributor to local and foreign media on governance and human rights challenges in Sri Lanka. He has played a leadership role in several pro democratic movements in the country and in the sub region.

He was TI Sri Lanka’s first Executive Director, where he served from 2002 until 2010. Presently he serves as a director of TI’s Board after being elected by Global membership of TI movement in 2010.

“There ought to be transparency on both the framework set for the inquiry and the basis for charging – the danger is this ends with those involved profiteering without [the public gaining] adequate benefits”, a Finance Ministry official told Colombo Telegraph on the condition of anonymity.

The final ‘Weliamuna Report’ report was submitted to the Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on the 31st March 2015 and recommended criminal investigations into the entire re-fleeting process and had noted instances where former chairman Wickramasinghe, a brother-in-law of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa and airlines’ CEO, Kapila Chandrasena, should be prosecuted.

Mean while, yesterday, Ruwan F. Guruge, the owner of Sri Lanka Mirror emailed the following story [of his own website carried] to the editor of Colombo Telegraph, copying to J.C. Weliamuna, Krishantha Cooray, one of the UNP exco members and the head of the UNP media unit and also to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mangala Samaraweera. His email reads as follows:

An organised mudslinging campaign targeting Attorney-At-Law – J.C. Weliamuna has commenced after investigations have commenced on the Weliamuna report committee with regard to the irregularities at Sri Lankan Airlines.

It is said that an advance payment of Rs. 12 million has been made for the mudslinging campaign.

The former chairman of Sri Lankan Airlines was non other than the brother of former first lady – Shiranthi Rajapaksa.

The Weliamuna report has revealed of staggering financial irregularities and corruption that has taken place between 2006 – 2014.

The report was handed over to the President and the Sri Lankan Airlines chairman on March 30.

A lawyer tasked with the campaign against the report and Weliamuna, has been paid an advance of Rs. 10 million. According to sources, a trade union of Sri Lankan Airlines has been tasked with the mudslinging campaign and for this purpose an advance payment of Rs. 02 million has been made.

The mission, which is headed by a prominent official of the Rajapaksa government is also joined by a group of officials facing charges by the Weliamuna committee report.

Editor’s note – “Weliamuna has been a great contributor to Colombo Telegraph, a friend but moreover he is my private lawyer who is representing me in the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka. CT did ask Weliamuna a simple question for the benefit of our readers – the question was pertaining to the fee the Weliamuna team had been paid. When Weliamuna was contacted over the phone he did confirm the fee to be a sum of Rs 3.5million in total but he was not in a position to provide a break down at that time. CT did write to him subsequently but he is yet to reply us.”

Wiliamuna TIS

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Latest comments

  • 13
    0

    The journalism with use of weasel words such as the following- “Good governance activists in Sri Lanka urged”, “the work done was voluntary – this is what was told to people with links to Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL).” “another staff member and a good governance activist said.”- in abundance seems to explain the motive of writer is nothing other than their conflict of private interest even if it were by CT. I don’t believe a person with such qualification and earning potential would do job of this on a voluntary basis. What is there to be volunteer for? Someone robs the country; your are going there to find the truth putting your life at risk, to do something voluntarily? you would be naïve, wouldn’t you?. Are you undervalue yourselves?. If Weerawansa will be able to turn around his fortune, this guy will be the first one who are to be offered the free ride on a white van. Yes, that will be free, but not his service.

    I think, MR’s Brother-in-Law who seems to have operated the SL Airlines as his own company, sharing its resources, particularly the human resources with his nephew have enough wealth at his disposal to hire a group to mudsling at the TISL. People of this country have disgusted with anger when his home was robbed, not feeling pity on him, but feeling filthy at the victim knowing the value of his wrist watch stolen. His behavior at his age explains how good MR and his cohorts are at white anting a country without any regards to poor folks that they brought them to power. Would they rest for a moment after loosing all this in a matter of a month or two, believing the words of an astrologer?. That is what we have been seeing.

    • 3
      15

      AIA. I would think that if one loves the country so much they would work voluntarily for the betterment of the country . These are the people who rob the country making money like a whopping Rs 3.5 million for an enquiry . Yet they have the audacity to pose as goody goodies in the eyes of the people . Shame on such characters who hoodwink the people . !

      • 7
        5

        Sarojini, Please stop your BS (in captals)

      • 8
        0

        I dont think so, that the members of this commission should work without being paid for the services the provide. If it should be that way judges, police, and even the politicians should not get any wages. The payment is fo the expertise the make available in their field but the labour should be paid. In this particular case the wrong part is that there should have been more transparency right from the beginning and it was mistake of the politics. One can ask how was LLRC dealt with during the inqueries? were they being paid by the SL govt. who was to cleared free of war crimes? then what about the conflict of interests? so It would be better the Welliamuna and the President make an open statement regarding the conditions made at the appointment!

      • 9
        3

        Sarojini,

        There were 3 persons appointed to the Panel of Inquiry. They heard evidence and made findings. Why should someone rendering their professional services be required to work voluntarily? Do politicians who are supposed to be serving the people work voluntarily? Can you name any group of persons who would render services voluntarily? Shouldn’t professionals be entitled to be remunerated for their services?

        • 6
          0

          Sarojini – Why should renowned lawyers work for free ?.unless it was a humanitarian issue and the Govt.never wanted them to work without remuneration. This is a cover up story started by interested parties to under mind the report,where the commission has found serious flaws in the administration of the multimillion dollar organization and high lighted misuse, mal administration and embezzlement . No one has raised this question as to why the Weliamuna report is collecting dust at the chairman’s office but there are many questioning the professional fees paid to the lawyers for doing a through investigation. If there is Personal tussle between lawyer Weliamuna and the author of this article,it should be handled outside and not bring it to CT for discussion as what matters is the colossal waste at Sri Lankan airlines.The previous regime had spent 1500 million rupees on air travel and there was no one then and today to question that waste as Sri Lankan never recovered that money.

      • 1
        1

        Sarojini, I do not know what you do for a living ?

        I am sure you will not spend your own time and money to volunteer for a
        national project.

        Mr.Weliamuna, along with his associates and other assistants and usage of equipment has spent a considerable amount of time, effort and money to put forward this report which was requested by the Minister of Ports and Aviation Hon.Arjuna Ranatunge who may have agreed to the fee prior to the
        onset of the probe.

        Are we, the people, concerned about the fee paid for the job ?
        I am in doubt that the people cared about the fee paid.
        This request to reveal the breakdown must be coming from vested interests to temporarily distract the public from the truth revealed in this damning report that has very prominent names from the previous regime.
        LOOKS VERY MUCH LIKE MAKING A STORM IN A TEA CUP WHEN THE REAL STORM
        IS JUST BEGINNING TO BLOW.
        THIS ALSO SOUNDS LIKE A WARNING TO ANYONE WHO WOULD GO AGAINST THE YET
        FORMIDABLE FORMER REGIME WHO ARE TRYING TO RECUPERATE FASTER TO DESTROY
        ALL EVIDENCE OF THEIR MISDEEDS DURING THEIR TIME OF TOTAL POWER.

        • 1
          0

          Yasin . I would offer my services voluntarily for something I believe in which deserves my commitment . For instance if I strongly believed that there has been an injustice for the people of SL due to massive levels of corruption I would go hammer and tong to find out the truth .WITHOUT GETTING PAID FOR THIS. By the way I know many people who have served SL in times of need without getting paid . These are the true PATRIOTS WHICH SERVE THE COUNTRY .

          • 0
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            Ranjini
            My sincere respects for your commitment to one and all and to your reply as well. I am proud and wish there were many more of your class to make this world a happy place.

            • 0
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              Thanks Yasin . Deeply appreciated .

      • 2
        1

        Welamuna is not trusted by the general public in the first place,. He belongs to a NGO funded by foreign agency; he was hand picked by Ranil, the Prime Minister to head this inquiry. It is the elected executive president only he could appont commissions of inquir. The Prime minister’s office nor the president has announced the terms and conditions and the payments with this man, Welamuna. Ranil and Maithre are answerable to this country forthse acts which amount to embezzlement of public funds.. In no other country fro US, Cuba, britain. across the Europe to Romania, Russia, China to Japan would this malfeasance will be tolerated. There is only one country in the presnt world which is equals this regime, That is North Korea.

      • 0
        0

        SAROJINI. I respect that you are entitled to your opinion. I don’t need to defend JCW, but my point is he is a professional and he might have charged as per his and his men charge rates. If someone from the good governance side has paid it, it is more of an issue that needs to be answered by the one who paid…if he/she is only a cashier/teller, then it should follow up the chain tracking who gave the approval. He seems to have provide the amount, now the readers wants the break down….and once they have got the break down, they want the employment contract. For person of his standing I guess, time is money … feeding readers with info to get excited would not bring any dough. I guess he does his fair share of lifting by paying tax back to the country- more earning higher tax, is not it.

        Your argument seems to suggest that we all have to work voluntarily as we love this country. Do not I have to live if I were to love this country?. Have to earn for living. This circus of late is, as if a house has been white anted; the pest controller who confirmed so has became the focus; because his charge was too high.

        All these seem to indicate that his inquiry has touched the raw nerve of the scandal and those who involved understandably try to find a way out, and they feel, it is prudent to spend the money now try making his report null and void than spending later in defending themselves in a court of law. Will they succeed? Time will tell.

    • 2
      1

      Aia,
      I agree that this work do not necessarily be voluntarily work. But most of Aia’s arguments are very similar to MR loyalists concept of “gratitude”. If this is fee paying consultancy work (3 weeks, 3 people, full/part time? Rs.3.5m), they should have invoiced the government with some description and work breakdown. I believe Weliamuna is a believer of people’s rights of information, why can’t he be an example and publish this information. By not doing it, he damage the trust of young political leadership generated in the last couple of months… I thought government appointed committees for this type of work gets only allowances and some perks ? But This invoice may looks like Price Water Cooper auditing invoice in the West…:-(

    • 0
      1

      RE: Absolute Conflict Of Interest: Maithri’s Investigator Weliamuna Must Go

      Whether he goes or not, was there Fraud at Air Lanka.

      Do not lose forest for the Trees.

      Is there Fraud at Air Lanka? To what Exyent? $1, $1,000,000, 0r $100,000,000?

  • 10
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    Not sure if you want him to work for free.I imagine what will happen if cops are asked to work for free.They will rob you silly.

    • 3
      5

      This is not about taking money or the fee,But not disclosing them. Again how can the Chairman of TISL work for a government???

      • 1
        1

        Did Ranil and Maithri tell you that they didn’t know of the various positions Weliamune held?

        Stop your bullshit please.

  • 1
    6

    I feel sorry for Paikiasothy….

    Poor fella didn’t take our inhabitants Tax Money.

    Has he got a gig from our unelected PM?..

  • 1
    4

    Did Maithri give Welimuna the Gig ?…

  • 11
    0

    Why are you expecting Weliamuna to provide his services free of charge?

    • 1
      0

      3.5 million rupees is a lot of money to a guy like me, but what is paid is relative. Weliamuna did some very good investigating, and this money is probably not excessive for a man of his efficiency.

      Weren’t the figures for Sir Desmond de Silva much more startling?

      I’m just not able to make a study of Economics; past my prime, but all this sounds relatively simple to understand.

  • 2
    5

    thus confirms that Lawyers are PROFESSIONAL LIARS. They would twist even a Twister.

    Paying something reasonable FOR THEIR TIME is fine but 3.5 Mil for a joint report by 3 people of whom one is a known activist is not acceptable…

    • 0
      0

      Snowden – This is a matter for the Govt. to solve as who knows what
      price was agreed by the govt.as they never wanted a law firm to do free
      service. There are 1500 corruption cases lodged with the BC and do we
      expect the lawyers to investigate these cases free of charge. What business we as people have the right to as Mr.Welimina to itemize the
      charges.

      Even in the good old days, only the rich were able to engage senior
      criminal lawyers like Colvin. GG as the fees they charged were exorbitant and there was no questioning then. People lack knowledge
      in these matters and poke their mouths unnecessarily. No one talks
      about the colossal loss at Sri Lankan airlines, which is run by people’s money but talk about meagre things like lawyers fees. We should put this matter to the current minister and he should take
      up if charges claimed was not agreed.

  • 11
    3

    Colombo telegraph- stop harassing this man

  • 7
    1

    Can the so called editor find us a party who will conduct an inquiry free of charge. Not in any country to our knowledge. However if Weliamuna has double dipped both the Presidenst office and Transparency international ( received a payment from transparency International as well ) he should return one of the parties which ever is less.

    BE REALISTIC.

    • 3
      2

      This is not about taking money or the fee, But not disclosing them. Again how can the Chairman of TISL work for a government???

  • 12
    2

    There is a cost involved even when investigating. Why do it voluntary when the Airline will be in a better position to recover stolen funds based on Weliamuna’s report? Every human being has a life, family etc. to maintain. So it is fair for Weliamuna to be paid. Some of us fight for the rights of others for free, but the struggle cannot be sustained for long when other sources of income becomes absent.

    • 0
      0

      Wonder whether this Deshapremi Fazi,can put in a word to his mate the lovely FM and get on the President’s Commission to save our Wilpattu?.

      We inhabitants would he happy to pay Fazi any difference or even extra if the dosh which the President would pay is not enough, as long as Fazi can stop Baththudeen..

      Another Deputy by the name of Shabadeen , apparently an old mate of CBK is also clearing traditional Tamil turf in Batti, according to the TamilNet.

      Perhaps Native Vedda might chip in there with his mates here, if they want Fazi’s help ..

      I mean “Lobbying” is the tool of the trade of “Yahapalanaya” in the West. Right….?…

  • 9
    2

    The previous regime is smarting in their asses after the report. They will be all out for Weliamuna ‘ s neck! They will go all out to wring his neck! I don’t know why CT is getting worried? Have they got a Rajapakse donation?
    Calculate the consultancy fees on a daily basis for several weeks for several lawyers? + other expenses. Use rates of Romesh or other top lawyer.it would be astronomical compare to the tuppence charged by them!

    • 3
      3

      This is not about taking money or the fee,But not disclosing them. Again how can the Chairman of TISL work for a government???

      • 3
        0

        What is this disclosure requirement? Has there been a conflict of interest? what is the conflict of interest?

  • 3
    2

    I think people have a right to know credibility of those high profile figures who hold high public office, who are required to maintain their integrity and credibility above anything else.

    I must say that I write this not with an intension of harming Mr Weliamuna’s credibility but to afford him with an opportunity to prove the people that he is a person with a high degree of integrity and credibility and I reiterate that this is written purely in the public interest because it is people’s right to know about the true character of ‘high profile public figures’.

    I retained Mr Weliamuna for a FR matter filed in the Supreme Court (SCFR/247/2010) and I must say that had a better experience with Mr Weliamuna’s conduct and have my serious concerns about his credibility.

    I don’t want to disclose any further about the role Mr Weliamuma played in it, however, if Mr Weliamuma claims that he is a man with a high degree of integrity and credibility and have done nothing wrong concerning this case, then of course I am prepared to come out with absolutely accurate information that are also filed in Court.

    I claim that I have stumped Mr Weliamuna and leave it to him to prove that he was not out. If he claims he was within the crease when stumping, then I am prepared to call the third umpire (the people) with all the relevant evidence produced before them to make a decision.

    • 6
      1

      Mr Nagananda,

      Surely you have a better command of the English language than to write a non-sense paragraph like this?:

      Quote:
      I retained Mr Weliamuna for a FR matter filed in the Supreme Court (SCFR/247/2010) and I must say that had a better experience with Mr Weliamuna’s conduct and have my serious concerns about his credibility.
      Unquote.

      Would you care to clarify what you meant?

  • 7
    3

    Do you expect professionals to do voluntary work?

    Rs 3.5 mn is reasonable and the chapter should be closed.

    Let’s spend some money to do a financial investigation at Sri Lankan to find out as to how they lost Rs 29 bn in 2014. A good forensic audit and investigation can cost Rs 10 mn.

    Keep in mind that the lowest paid pilot is around Rs 1 mn per month and a stewardess is earning Rs 0.5 million per month with allowances.

    • 4
      1

      Totally agree. What they have charged is reasonable. It is not just the lawyers, how about the support staff.

      There is absolutely no necessity to publicise their invoice.

  • 7
    1

    CT… the most important thing of the hour is not the fees paid to Weliamuna but the action taken by the UNP Govt against these very serious charges and findings in the report. It is very clear now that Rajapakse and the gang of robbers are trying to divert public attention to the report findings and instead keep accusing weliamuna. CT should not get trapped in to this ploy and instead highlight the criminals like Nishantha Wickramasinghe/Kapila Chandrasena and other senior Managers of Sri Lanka Airlines.

  • 3
    1

    Has CT and those who are jumping on this bandwagon ever heard that if one pays peanuts, one gets monkeys? Or what that old Egg noodle vendor of yester-year said when asked for a discount, “good things no cheap, cheap things no good”? Frankly I don’t think that any one should have too much difficulty getting the information being sought, i.e. the breakdown of the invoice, under the right to information act.

    What’s all the fuss about this? What do professionals charge for fees today? How much does a senior banker make for a month these days? How about CEO-s of large companies? Has anyone bothered to ask how much the ex chair of Golden Key pays his principal attorney to keep him out of jail?

    Can some enlightened soul do a comparison from public records and help to put this nonsense to an end please, and look to the value that this inquiry into the sordid record of Sri Lanka’s national carrier has realised?

    It appears to me that the vajra-fondling marauder is stirring things up on behalf of his randy and utterly incompetent b-i-l to deflect focus from the main issue, i.e. the findings of the BOI!!!

  • 0
    0

    Not only this person, there are so many Singhalese officers never carry out their job genuinely. One of them is the present North head Palliakara. He is acting exactly like earlier head Chanrasree. Instead of helping affected Tamils from North he is only helping forcibly colonised Singhalese. If Tamils need to live together happily with Singhalese this man to be replaced by a good Tamil person. Why a signalise head in majority Tamil area. After all he is MR’s man. He never allow Mithiri to gain support in North. Everyone warned earlier that this man will not be a good replacement to Chanrasree. Mithiri, please change this man- he is collaborating with nasty selfish, money greedy so called Tamils(kaakai vanniyans) in the North and ruining the friendship between Tamils and Singhalese.

  • 5
    2

    It is quite unfair and unreasonable to ask someone to do charity work to inquire about the irregularities held in a billion $ dealing airlines. In this case the scapegoat is Mr.Welliamunne. In that case will these protesters (like .Colombo Telegraph) ask all the so called Politicians who shamelessly say in the political stages that they are working for mother Lanka, people of the motherland and even willing to go to electric chair for the sake of the people and the country, to work free and without perks. 18 billion $ they ask for work for the people and their motherland (Mow Bima). Chits.

    So folks don’t live in a dream land and don’t forget all people including those fighting for good governance and justice have their stomach to feed and the responsibility to take care of their wife and children. Even for the monks people are asked to Dhana. So What?. Rupees. Million 3.5 for a team of three is not a big sum big fortune for a work of this magnitude and nature. Let the genuine people work get paid. You look at the rogues who rob and cheat in thousands and billions of the country without any trace. Don’t expect the good souls to suffer in poverty. When Mr.Welliamunne’s house was attacked by the thugs and hooligans did any compensation was paid. Who is their to compensate him. Will the BMC give him free building materials. Or because he worked for the people will the building workers do repairs for free of charges? So folks where are we heading?

    So, we don’t want charity workers. But genuine people to work for the country of course for a reasonable remuneration.
    Long live mother Lanka and it’s genuine citizens. Let us understand the realities of life.
    Gondola.

  • 4
    2

    A hue and cry just because Weliamuna did not provide a breakdown of his fee.

    A storm in a Tea-cup!

  • 3
    0

    To the CT Editor:

    Dear Sir,

    In order to prepare this SriLankan Airlines report and during the period in which it was compiled JC Weli was occupying a posh office facility in a top floor (above the 30th floor) in the Colombo Echelon Square World Trade Center (WTC). JC Weli was also hosting high-profile local and foreign guests including from diplomatic circles at this premises under the pretext that the PM has entrusted him very important under ground investigations. The facility was fully staffed and equipped.

    As a reader of CT may I please know the following:

    1. Who paid for this facility?
    2. How much did it cost?
    3. Who paid for the staff and equipment?
    4. Is this expense in addition to the 3.5 million or part of it?
    5. Why was this most exuberant location chosen in real right royal Rajapaksa style of lavish when HE the President MS himself set the example saving public funds by having a Rs.7500/- swearing in ceremony?
    6. Does international definition of corruption encompass waste of public resources.
    7. What is the annual salary of a SC judge?
    8. When will the Board of Directors of SL Airlines and its Auditors be summoned to the FCID if the recommendations of the corruption report are sensible?

    I hope you would have the courage to pose the foregoing questions to JCW on behalf of CT readers despite JCW being your private lawyer.

    Thank you.

    Thank you!

    • 2
      3

      Instead of casting aspersions on Weliamune ask Ranil and Sirisena whether they agreed terms and conditions of remuneration before confirming the appointment.

      Stop writing Bull Shit.

      • 1
        0

        Dear Navin,

        If JCW can be transparent as much as he wants others to be, this issue wouldn’t have got blown out to this extent and you would not have to taint your self with this “shit”.

        This is all about walking the talk. leave it to the readers to make the judgement. You need not jump the gun…!

        Since now facts are emerging here, I wonder whether JCW could be “TRANSPARENT” and deny what NAGANADA is claiming in his comments about SCFR/247/2010 and prove his integrity without hiding behind proxies like you, like a coward…!!!

        Come on JCW, now the ball is in you court, speak up….!!! (the world is watching including the Diplomatic Community).

  • 2
    2

    This is ridiculous. Why should Weliamuna or anyone else do this for free. Time and effort needed to conduct such a major inquiry and the main point should be whether it was done properly. If so, the persons that conducted it should be paid. There is nothing wrong in that.

    This will give ammunition to all the Rajapaksa eran robbers to complain about these investigations and that will be counterproductive. Whether Weliamuna is the chairman of Transparency international or any other such body is irrelevant.

  • 2
    1

    This is not about taking money or the fee, But not disclosing them. Again how can the Chairman of TISL work for a government???

  • 4
    1

    CT staff are on a journey nit-picking based on some hidden agenda, in the name of
    journalism, I guess. The Fees should have been based on a percentage of the
    recoverable defrauded assets – which will be much more than the silly 3.5 mil. Rs. as has
    precedent in Professions?

  • 5
    1

    The adverse comments regarding Mr Weliamune only can mean that the JARASALLI of the Rajapakses has filtered through to the sponsors of the Villification Campaign.

    Whether Weliamune is getting paid or not for his services is irrelevant. No one will be punished on the basis of his findings as a matter of course. Weliamune’s findings will remain only allegations, until they are judicially investigated, crimes requiring to be established by the strict adherence to rules of evidence and the criminal procedure code.

    By the way, Weliamune is not responsible if those who appointed him did not take care to ensure that the investigator did not have a conflict of interest. Whether his positions in the Transparency Int’l, Lawyers Collective, Lawyers for Democracy, Friday Forum, and Presidential Task Force, have colored his perspective remains moot, and in the circumstances of this particular investigation, it will be folly to throw away its findings – worse to hand a victory to the mercenary Villification Campaign and allow the thieves to get away scot free.

    It is so, so disappointing, that Colombo Telegraph has joined the Villification Campaign, and it appears that Nagananda has a personal axe to grind.

    I hope reason will prevail, that the Powers do not lose sight of the objective: YAHAPALANAYA.

  • 5
    0

    The fee of Rs, 3.5 million charged by Weliamune and other professionals is not a big amount when you consider the time they would have spent in collecting and compiling such a large volume of information re the miserable manner AirLanka has been managed, misused, robbed and ruined. CT’s query about the breakdown of this cost and their slow attention is not a big issue in the current context. In this fee there could be other support staff costs, transport, communication etc etc and therefore it looks the fee is not expensive but very reasonable.

    Of course, there are the villians who would like to bring disrepute to these gentlemen for exposing the criminal way the airline has been handled and the harm they would have to face when the FCID, BC, etc start their investigations based on this report. So naturally, as they are used to pay a few guys to show their anger and frustration towards Weliamune.

    We are sure Weliamune or Transparency International would be not be disturbed or distracted over these allegationsand they would go forward with their tasks ahead.

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    There is no reason why an independent body like the TISL shouldn’t be allowed to investigate corruption in state institutions and be paid for it.

    Some one in CT doesn’t like the Rajapaksa associated thieves being exposed and brought to justice. Has he or she a vested interest in stopping these investigations?

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    Jonston Fernando was taken in by the FCID for taking time to settle a Rs. 5 million credit he ran giving dry rations to flood victims. Now Waliamuna courtesy of Yahapalana robs the country of 3.5 million and all the diaspora hurray canines are happy. After the next general election the yahapalana robber barons will be put behind bars enjoy.

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      “Jonston Fernando was taken in by the FCID for taking time to settle a Rs. 5 million credit he ran giving dry rations to flood victims.”

      …. giving dry rations to flood victims . Ha ha , this is the joke of the day ! oh poor johny serving the time for being extremely generous.

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    Weliamuna is also a serving member of the international board of directors at Transparency International . see link https://www.transparency.org/whoweare/organisation/board_of_directors/1/

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    Employing someone with an ill-fated track record as that of Weliamuna nullifies the whole investigation process. The present administration should be more careful in its choices. It is not known to most that Weliamuna used nearly 2 million of transparency funds to finance his own farewell in 2010 and later orchestrated the ousting of his successor because the new executive director did not promote Weliamuna’s special lady friend as the new deputy executive director! so much for yahaplanaya!

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    [Edited out]
    @Navin – don’t post gossip web links here – CT

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      [Edited out]

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    Mr Weliamuna is a senior lawyer who enjoy a wide practice. How can the people expect him to work without a fee. we have witness the services rendered by him and others, who rose to occasion when former CJ was illegally removed at great risk. People should remember how hand grenades were thrown at his residence.

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    Throwing a Grenade incident saga is now in the public domain and investigators have finally discovered that it was [Edited out]

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