Presidential confidant Herman Guneratne, has been moved to the Matara Prison Hospital from the Merchant Ward of the Colombo National Hospital where he has spending his time in ‘remand’ since the UNP’s factional clashes on October 5.
Guneratne was arrested by Matara Police on 5 October after he used a personal weapon to shoot at pro-Ranil protestors during the clashes.
Several people including an army soldier was injured when Guneratne fired his weapon into the crowd. He is the only person in the crowd thus far that was holding a firearm during the violence.
Herman Guneratne is the father of expelled UNP reformist and Southern Provincial Councillor Maithri Guneratne who organised the “peaceful march” calling for the oust of the UNP Leader from Matara that led to the clashes.
Herman Guneratne was remanded by the Matara magistrate and asked to return to court on 7th and 21st of October but he was absent, having gotten himself moved to the Merchant Ward in Colombo.
It is expected that he will present himself before the Matara Magistrate and the Matara High Court. He is believed to have obtained a medical certificate claiming he needs to seek medical treatment in a facility in Singapore which may be presented to the Courts for injuries he sustained during the October 5 clashes.
Herman Guneratne is reported to be a close associate of President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa.