The chief opposition whip Anura Kumara Dissanayake has today condemned Transparency International Sri Lanka’s genuineness in awarding this year’s “integrity” award to the former editor and the forever chairman of the Ravaya Guarantee Limited Victor Ivan.
Speaking to Colombo Telegraph the outspoken MP and JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake asked “how on earth could Transparency International grant this award to Victor Ivan who has been involved in much corruption himself besides being a person who has no integrity at all. The word integrity is not just about ‘genuineness’, it is much beyond that. This recipient’s character and practice is far beyond that and there is no way he could be even included in this category”.
According to the Cambridge dictionary “integrity” means: “the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles that you refuse to change”.
“Victor Ivan just prior to being granted the title even backtracked and started repaying monies he had swindled from Ravaya newspaper supporters. He is also accused of defrauding the Employees Provident Fund and Employees Trust Fund besides also defrauding the Department of Income Tax for over Rs 12 million. These are well established facts, as far as I know and these issues are currently being investigated” the chief opposition whip went on to tell Colombo Telegraph.
Being the Chairman of the Ravaya and also as its editor during the Rajapaksa regime, week after week, Victor Ivan wrote full page articles to attack Rajapaksa critics, he went on to write that Mahinda and his sons, Basil and Gotabaya were not corrupt and that the allegations made by other journalists were not true.
“So I urge Transparency International to clarify the basis that this decision was made to endow Victor Ivan this award and divulge who were the other nominees and also who were the judges who made this decision on an urgent basis” he said.