By Suranimala Umagiliya –
Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s recent interview where he attempted to deflect his involvement with the murder of Lasantha Wickrematunge is but a futile attempt made to a supine journalist who never asked him any follow up questions. At one point Gotabaya states that he knows who murdered Lasantha and the late Editor’s daughter Ahimsa, who lives overseas must come to him in Sri Lanka to find out who murdered her father.
Every once in awhile Gotabaya wakes up to deflect charges against him when there is a gap in the Presidential stakes within the Pohottuwa Group or when a court case against him is set for hearing. This is rich coming from a man, who under oath in the Mt Lavinia Courts said that the MiG deal was a “Government to Government” sale and there were no commissioned agents. Gotabaya was the Chief Financial Officer and hence the ultimate responsibility lay with him where financial matters of the Defence establishment was concerned. Gotabaya lied under oath. Evidence unearthed and confirmed by the Ukrainian government proves that there was a large difference between the payment received by Ukraine and the amount paid by the Sri Lankan government. Therefore a huge commission was made by someone in between. Remember the Belimissa Holding (a dud Company) that was nominated to be the financier?. It is now evident that it was never a “government to government” deal. Mt Lavinia Court record will show that he gave evidence stating the MiG purchases were above board. He swore in Court…and LIED.Why should he even hesitate to lie about Lasantha’s murder?
The MiG file and the connected papers at Air Force Headquarters have gone missing. Any guesses as to who was behind? Futile effort as other copies were available.
There were several army intelligence officers who were posted to missions overseas at the recommendation of the Ministry of Defence when Gotabaya was Secretary of Defence. Some of them are now named as suspects into the murder of Lasantha Wickrematunge. The CID has obtained an order from the Magistrates Court to take charge of a clip from a TV station of a Gotabaya interview where he states that one reporter dares to roam around quite freely, driving his car after criticising the Secretary of Defence (him) which was an obvious reference to Lasantha Wickrematunge. The brave former Secretary of Defence might say the reference was not to Lasantha. That is how brave he is. Of course he cannot deny his infamous “who is Lasantha” quip. Read together these interviews show an in built and uncontrollable hatred towards Lasantha.
Time and again when the going gets hot Gotabaya announces his candidature to run for Presidency. He speaks of his freedoms and fundamental rights to give up his US citizenship without let or hinder from the US State Department. Did he not think that journalists in Sri Lanka had a right to LIFE without let or hinder from the Army Intelligence? Was that not their fundamental right? Right to life is more important than right to give up a citizenship.
Gotabaya thinks different. He rants during the interview that Lasantha’s daughter, first wife, second wife, brother and the Editors together with other journalists who took over the newspaper after the murder, are all overseas. He himself was at the time of the murder and YET a US citizen. Is he saying that they dare not come to Sri Lanka? Why? What would happen to them if they did? Explain Mr Gotabaya. Explain.
Time has not changed Gotabaya. He is as he was when he wielded power. The Rajapaksa clan has to select one of their members to hold power till Namal is ready and Gotabaya would be the worst of the lot.
If a man can take an oath to tell the truth and nothing but the truth in a Court of law where HE WAS THE COMPLAINANT and LIE what would he say when he is the accused.