Former Central Bank Governor and the man at the centre of the bank’s bond issue scandal, Arjuna Mahendran, is “not willing to come to Sri Lanka,” a source close to Mahendran told Colombo Telegraph.
Mahendran, a Sri Lanka born Singaporean national and a close friend and official ‘advisor’ to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, was found to be guilty of wrongdoing by the Committee of Inquiry (CoI) appointed by President Maithripala Sirisena to investigate allegations regarding the issue of bonds in early 2015.
The CoI has recommended that the Attorney General initiate formal legal proceedings against those at fault and move to recover from Mahendran’s son-in-law Arjun Aloysius the over 11 billion rupees loss incurred by state agencies including the Employees Provident Fund and the Development Lotteries Board.
Perpetual Treasuries, with which Aloysius is associated, made several billion rupees in the transactions that came under investigation.
The Prime Minister, who during his previous tenure in the office appointed Mahendran as the Chairman, Bureau of Investment, offered the Governor’s post after the change of government in January 2015. Party seniors are reported to have objected strongly to this appointment expressing concerns over his nationality. Wickremesinghe however ignored concerns and warnings. After Mahendran quit the post, Wickremesinghe re-employed him as an Advisor.
It remains to be seen what kind of action is taken to bring the errant former Governor before the law, considering his expressed unwillingness to return to Sri Lanka.