23 September, 2018

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Lalith Weeratunga’s Shameful Legacy; A Tragic Story Of Betrayal Of A Dignified Service

By Vishwamithra

“It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it.” ~Aung San Suu Kyi

Ceylon Civil Service, later transformed into Sri Lanka Administrative Service, has been a dignified public service. ‘It functioned as part of the executive administration of the country to various degrees until Ceylon gained self-rule in 1948. Until it was abolished on 1 May 1963 it functioned as the permanent bureaucracy or secretariat of Crown employees that supported the Government of Ceylon’ (Source: Wikipedia).  Among the great men who peopled this strikingly distinct public service were Sir Ponnambalam Arunachalam (the first Ceylonese Civil Servant), Shirley Amarasinghe, Raju Coomaraswamy, Sir Richard Aluvihare, M J Perera, G V P Samarasinghe, Bradman Weerakoon, M D D Peiris, Mahi Wickremaratne. Outside the Civil Service per se, there were some outstanding public servants who contributed immensely for enrichment of public life of the nation. Amongst them were Dr Wickrema Weerasooria, Lal Jayawardene and Warnasena Rasaputra. All these gentlemen were not devoid of politics. They certainly would have had their personal political thinking and they even might have had their personal biases right throughout their careers. Yet they did not go before the television cameras and openly canvassed the public opinion on behalf of their masters.

That is the legacy, in addition to their splendid work as public servants, which they left behind- a total apolitical demeanor before the public. How does a political bearing of a public servant, especially during the time of an election, do matter and how does that particular behavior color the public service as a whole? That is the question each public servant in the country is faced with today and what Lalith Weeratunga, Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Secretary during the eight years of their power, did during those vile years and what he is portraying himself to be is laughable. Today Lalith Weeratunga is an alleged offender. The allegation that he was one of the key people in the abuse of state money for the purchase the infamous ‘Sil Redi’ in order to sway the voters of Sinhalese Buddhist ilk is a formidable one. How he would be plotting to extricate himself in courts of law is another matter altogether. 

Yet, Lalith Weeratunga’s assertions that the Rajapaksa Family is the sole political entity that could serve the needs of the people of Sri Lanka are a gross abuse of his office as a senior member Sri Lanka Administrative Service (SLAS). After being a direct beneficiary of the Rajapaksa rule and presiding over a public service that was subjected to total apathy and subservience to one single Family Rule, Weeratunga now resorts to justifying the rule of the Rajapaksas on grounds of speedy action and decision-making processes that were present during that time.  After being the most dominant public servant during the Rajapaksa regime, when Weeratunga’s demeanor most undoubtedly reveals a picture of a partner-in-crime, the inevitable message sent down the well-structured layers of the SLAS is one of ‘it’s okay to look the other way when politicians resort to looting the government coffers’. The grave damage that Weeratunga and his cohorts caused to the once-dignified SLAS is incredible. What is even more injurious is what he has chosen to do after his retirement from serving the Rajapaksa family instead of the country.

Whatever Weeratunga’s defense his lawyers are contemplating, his association with Mahinda Rajapaksa from the outset of the ‘Helping Hambantota’ fiasco (from which Mahinda Rajapaksa was acquitted by the then Chief Justice Sarath N Silva whose political allegiances continue to change as the country’s un-forecastable weather), has been solid and unbreakable. Nevertheless, Sarath N Silva later apologized to the people of Sri Lanka for rendering a ‘wrong’ decision in the ‘Helping Hambantota’ case. 

Rajapaksas have a very obscure and indefinable relationship with facts. Having been comforted by the luxuries of absolute power from 2005 to 2014, they are still living in that exalted cocoon from which they seem utterly uncomfortable to come out. This happens to all dictatorial leaders. Chanakya, the sage of the ancient world said that ‘the ultimate goal of all rulers should be to make their subjects free of fear’. The Rajapaksas have done the exact opposite. Having installed his own brother in the Ministry of Defense as its administrative and financial head, Mahinda Rajapaksa unleashed some of the worst and atrocious forces against the people who chose to defy them. Lalith Weeratunga was indeed an integral part of that wheel of fear and terror. A complete public servant like M D D Peiris who was one time Secretary to Prime Minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike would have shuddered and handed his resignation if he were asked to look the other way.

Speaking of a public service of the past is utterly useless unless one needs to see where some constructive changes could be introduced and implemented. That public service is gone and is a derelict of the dead past. The current crop of public servants who are dominating the upper echelons of SLAS might not be unrelenting in carrying out the government policies, but their commitment and allegiance to facts, accountability and transparency seems to have fallen by the wayside. If there were one person who could be singularly responsible for such a sharp fall in the public service in Sri Lanka, it is Lalith Weeratunga. His close relationship with Mahinda Rajapaksa made his visibility to the public even more distinct. 

But what made Lalith Weeratunga utterly guilty of wrongdoing was when he appeared on television and other radio talk shows during the last Presidential Election campaign. They are indeed inexcusable. No public servant has done before and no public servant has done since. Secretary to the President is an apolitical job. He may have his own personal political allegiances and likes. Yet those who are chosen to that service, Sri Lanka Administrative Service, are deemed to have ridden themselves of that political garb when they execute government policies. It is one thing to implement policies and programs dictated by the Cabinet of Ministers who are politicians, but to openly exhibit undiluted bias and prejudices towards a political vision is no embellishment to his professional career.

The writer has chosen a quotation by Aung San Suu Kyi, the charismatic new leader of Myanmar. She couldn’t have been more correct. The loss of power for Mahinda Rajapaksa was deeply felt by his immediate family and close cohorts. Lalith Weeratunga belongs to the latter category- close cohorts. That loss of power and a faint hope of regaining that power could be all-consuming. There is no aphrodisiac more powerful than power, so said Henry Kissinger. That love of power has turned into a lust; that lust is driving them into a corner, not of reflection on their mistakes and erroneous decisions; it has turned their attention to a more immediate need- how to regain that power. In that pursuit of lust, they are trying to legitimize and validate their wrongful decisions not in the way a scientist trying to rectify an entry of wrong facts into a scientific formula but as a hungry predator pursuing a helpless and unarmed prey running for its life. That is the tragic story of a dignified service to which Lalith Weeratunga belongs.      

*The writer can be contacted at vishwamithra1984@gmail.com                 

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  • 13
    2

    I am told by a chap who had the grits to say NO to case where “the great public servant” had issued “instructions” (under the influence of another) to get the Minister to sign some documents, which the Minister had no power to sign at that time. What is the result? (He is a chap who does not follow instructions so he merits no consideration.) The same thing bounced on him. A junior in the service gave the info to Jarapassa that there is enough money with him that can be used. So instructions were given to use it and carried out only to be handcuffed at the end of a trial. The trial had changed the administrative landscape of the country. Now there are enough of instances where junior public servants tell their seniors that it is against the law, which provides a ray of hope for prevalence of the rule of law. That way one of the successors “the great public servant” bowed out of the position with a straight back-bone and his farewell speech was published in the CT. The cardinal principle is that one can have political affiliations but in the performance of a public duty it must be definitely be within the rule of law amongst other excellent considerations.

    • 10
      2

      Vishwamithra ,

      RE: Lalith Weeratunga’s Shameful Legacy; A Tragic Story Of Betrayal Of A Dignified Service

      A Land Line No Other- There is No Shame, even for their ambassadors, where the politicians are known to be shameless.

    • 8
      0

      A Land Like No Other!

      “It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it.” ~Aung San Suu Kyi

      The ministerial connection behind the 10bn loan

      From Grape vine news……

      – On Monday details were revealed about a Rs. 10bn loan obtained from the People’s bank by a director of the bank for a private company which he is involved in. On Tuesday the Ceylon Bank Employees’ Union officially inquired from the People’s Bank on the Rs. 10bn loan.

      The leader of the National Unity Alliance, Azath Salley commenting on the matter noted that there is nothing the board of directors of the People’s bank could do as this incident was about Jehan Amaratunge who is a friend of Minister Malik Samarawickrama. Salley accused the Samarawickrama of using his influence to pass this loan through both the bank and the central bank.

      Déjà vu
      Do you remember how the Central Bank Treasury Bond Scam took place? It has now been proven that the father-in-law from with the Central Bank acted in a manner that benefited his son-in-law to the tune of billions of public funds.

      Isn’t it a conflict of interest when a Director of a State Bank approves a loan for another company he is affiliated with? What is the collateral the bank received when granting a loan of Rs. 10bn?

      Not in the Land like No Other!

      https://www.newsfirst.lk/2018/08/01/the-ministerial-connection-behind-the-10bn-loan/

      • 12
        0

        Amare,

        Do you believe the two timer azath salley and sirasa?
        He jumped from UNP to Mahinda and then to Hakeem and then again to Ranil finally with My3. his mouth stinks more than the beira lake.

        • 2
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          Mudson Amerasinghe ,

          “Do you believe the two timer azath salley and sirasa?”

          A very good question, but what are the facts, and what does the supporting data say? Do they have the facts and supporting data for their claims? Copernicus, Galileo and Kepler had supporting data for their claims, but what the Church had was questionable.

          The discussion should be on the facts/supporting data, and the impropriety and ethics of the case.

  • 16
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    The photograph says it all! There is no need for LW to bend at 45 degrees like that. When one of the princes was a student in a British university, LW accompanied the first lady on visits there to check on the urchin. Not the job of a senior civil servant.

    • 9
      1

      45 degrees or more bending is to expose the availability of other entrance.

  • 6
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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

  • 8
    1

    I’m pretty sure Weeratunga, being the passive-aggressive guy he is, must have been cursing under his breath, “Ayu Bowan, you A’Hole.”

  • 13
    1

    Lalith Weeratungas wife Mrs Sugathadasa was appointed to run the CSE by Rajapkse. She was not dishonest( in a money sense of talking, like her husband) but totally clueless about the complexities of money markets and securities.
    She was like a strict school teacher. Investments plummeted and nothing moved at the CSE. Rajapakse had to remove her after the investments in the country suffered for about one year. It would have been better to appoint her a librarian in order to keep the library quiet.

    But this funny Yahapalanaya government reappointed Mrs Sugathadasa as head of Insurance industry and gave her a car with a driver and a big salary. Rajapakse was an ignorant and a bad man, but this government is a tragic comedy

    • 6
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      Mrs Sugathadasa is NOT wifey of Lalith W the Sil-Redi Hora !
      [edited out]

  • 15
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    This Lalith Sil Reddhi Horaa Weeratunga is no where the classical civil servant who once adorned the top echelons of the Administration Service.Just have a second look of the spineless worm bend into 2 and 3 in the picture above and it’s clear he carried MR’s excreta as well.After his conviction in the Sil reddhi robbery case LW is now showing himself as a saint!Seems he is missing his glory days under MR and his bullet proof Volvo SUV he rode with Indrani Sugathadasa.The bugger should be really in jail.

  • 5
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    Viswamithra,

    Why you omitted brilliant international known economists caliber of Dr.Gamini Corea and Dr.Jayantha Kelegama who also came from outside Ceylon civil service functioned as permanent sectaries.

  • 7
    6

    An interesting article by Viswamitra.
    LalithW had done many irregularities.
    I also know a story happened long time ago. Once LW had sent a fax to a certain Ministry Secretary ordering him to absorb some outsiders to a certain government service and then do another thing. The junior officer who received the fax had taken it to the Ministry Secretary and had taken the liberty to tell him not to do it as the recruitment to that particular service could be done only through an open competitive exam. The Ministry Secretary had then pointed out that as the order had come from LW, he had no authority to refuse. Anyways the junior officer had stood on his ground and had told him that if the Secretary go ahead with the request it would he who would go against him the first and that he would stop it somehow. The Ministry Secretary was in a dilemma as he was a political appointee appointed by none other than the former President. In the meantime, without telling anything about the fax, the junior officer had notified the union leader to verify from the Presidential Secretariat whether there was any move to absorb outsiders to his service. The Ministry Secretary had the guts to approach the former President direct, even risking his own position, to tell the latter that he could not adhere to LW’s request and the reason. The former President, who listened to the Ministry Secretary, had cancelled LW’s order.
    Mahinda Rajapaksa wasn’t a demon or a dictator as his opponents portray. He is a good hearted gentleman. It was the cohorts who surrounded by him who ruined his good name. I hope he will have the guts to not to take back the former cohorts to his inner circle ever again.

    • 2
      0

      A very few government officials take the blame on behalf of politicians. When something goes wrong, they always put the blame on the politician. Only some rare professional government officials save the politician by taking the blame for themselves.
      Politicians always tend to take wrong decisions or try to overlook government rules/regulations. That is why there are experienced professional government officials who have the knowledge of financial regulations and establishment-code to advise politicians. As Secretary to President, LW has failed his duty. One might say Mahinda was intimidating and officials were scared to tell anything. I don’t agree. One had to have guts to approach him and explained him calmly why he shouldn’t do certain things.
      I remember another story.
      There was a junior government officer whose boss had the habit to come to the room at the end of everyday and scolds; “Look at your table. It is full of files, documents, highlighters, pens, pencils. Look at me. I use only one pen. Your table is so messy. When do you learn to keep your table neat? Go and look at my table. It is always organized, neat and orderly. My In and Out trays are always empty.” Then one day the junior officer who was a hard worker had enough and retorted “Yes my table is messy. It is because I do your job too. You don’t do anything. I do everything for you. I read documents for you and summarize or highlight the important parts for you. You only have to read my note and sign the document. I handle all your work. Your table is neat because you don’t work. My table is messy and full of files because I do both your work and mine.” After that the boss had stopped coming to junior’s room.

    • 3
      1

      One remarkable aspect of Mahinda is, he never put the blame on others. He grandly takes the blame which is a rare quality of a politician. I remember how he took pains to defend Lalith W in the Sil Redi case. That is one of the reasons why people like me still want to see him in the highest position again without his former cohorts, so that he would not repeat past blunders.

  • 4
    1

    Subservience to politicians cannot be condoned particularly from the top most public servants in the country. Politicisation of the public service also cannot be condoned. The author writes glowingly about Dr Wickrema Weerasuriya, brother in law of Gamini Dissanayake. Dr W may not have cow towed to brother in law Gamini D, but he certainly did the bidding for him and President JRJ. That wasn’t exactly honourable work for a public servant. Yes, they didn’t appear on TV but worked behind the scenes to do exactly or more than what Lalith W may have done. Remember, TV came to Sri Lanka in 1978 from memory, and it didn’t reach the position it enjoys today for a long time. TV did not have the reach it has today and few saw people cow towing to their political masters. Dr WW was the man behind the infamous family tree cartoon booklet that denigrated PM Sirimavo. It was vile political garbage and those behind that booklet showed they were willing to go down to the gutter for the sake of power. The author has also forgotten the first non-civil/admin service person to be appointed as a Permanent Secretary by President JRJ, Ananada Tissa De Alwis. He did the political bidding of his master amongst other public servants. Critising the politicisation of the public service is a welcome discussion. However, hopefully writers should give balanced opinions and not allow the obvious, ingrained Rajapaksa phobia to colour the tone and content of such writings.

  • 4
    0

    As long I know majority of civil servants during MR regime were involved in biding for there masters. Not just them the judiciary,police and the rest too. That is what the masters demanded and appointed some of them for.

  • 2
    1

    Beating about the bush without coming to terms with what happened during MR regime.The public servant General Fonseka defied MR and what happened is history. We cannot forget that at a BBC interview Gotabaya said that we wiil hang him.[Fonseka.] When agreeing to spend state funds on ‘Sil Redhi’ Weerathunga would have feared for his life. He would have dreamt of white vans.

  • 4
    2

    Naga Champa! Listen. A total of US$ 6.5 million was released by the Central Bank [CB] between May 9 Sep. 10 2014. None of it went through the prescribed channels – that is via the Foreign Ministry and the Sri Lanka’s diplomatic mission in Washington DC. The CB paid out the money on the written instructions of Sajin de Vaas Gunawardene, the then monitoring MP to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Ajith Nivard Cabraal, then Governor of the CB, and Lalith Weeratunga, then Secretary to the President Mahinda Rajapaksa recommended the disbursements in writing. The Sunday Times saw emails that validated this. The money allocated under this arrangement was only a fraction of what the former administration lavished on lobbyists and public relations agencies. Most were in the US but PR firms in in Britain and India were also hired. Millions of dollars made their way into various accounts. Domestically all decisions were taken behind closed doors. Those whose names appear in the paper work however are Vaas Gunawardene, Cabraal and Weeratunga. [Sunday times of 30.08.2015] It is obvious that orders came from MARA. It is not the drug dealers who should be hung but MARA and Weeratunga etal. See ST of 29.07.2018 also for more.

    • 2
      3

      DPJ
      That is not true. Mahinda didn’t choose PR firms or foreign MPs for lobbying for Sri Lanka. It was done by the others whose names were mentioned in your comment. At the time it was easy for any cohorts to justify Mahinda for hiring PR firms to do government propaganda work. He seemed to have simply agreed.
      Mahinda’s inner circle was full of such people. They all put him in trouble knowingly. Many of the people whom he thought were close to him actually worked against him behind the scene at the last Presidential election. If he didn’t come back to Parliament, we all could have seen Mahinda’s former cohorts holding high positions under the present government.
      There was an Ambassador appointed by Chandrika, a US resident who had boasted about his close connections with US officials in Washington. Chandrika had held him in high regard. There were even photographs of him attending White House functions. Anyways, somebody had later found out that he had paid millions of government money to a PR firm surreptitiously to do the job on behalf of him and that he actually didn’t have any connections with the US officials but had made such connections only through the PR firm. When Chandrika came to know about it she hadn’t wasted a moment to sack him.

      • 2
        4

        Champa the dodger,
        “Many of the people whom he thought were close to him actually worked against him behind the scene at the last Presidential election.” you say?
        Is that including the great SankiliWansa ? You know, the one who is so busy eating Lemon puff that his wifey has to get someone else?

        • 1
          1

          PUK Jayantha
          How could WW comes under that category when he was the one who initiated Mahinda Sunlanga to bring MR back?
          Next time make sure to post comments when you are sober, ok.

          • 3
            1

            Champa

            “Next time make sure to post comments when you are sober, ok.”

            Good idea.
            Similarly, you should wise up before typing.
            Does not matter how long it takes.

  • 3
    2

    Let us keep Lalith W apart for a moment. What is the practical side of ‘insubordination ‘? Can those of lower rank refuse to take orders from higher authority without facing any ‘diciplinary’ measures? Can anyone
    in Precedent’s office refuse orders from the Executive President? If Rajapaksa admits he gave the Sil redi orders what is the legal culpability of Lalith W? Who should face the punishment – Rajapaksa or Lalith? Further down the line Lalith or next in line administrator who carried out perchasing the material under Lalliith’s orders is responsible? Where in the law book these things are defined? Ranil Wicramasinge ordered suspension of port city contract for two years leading to a compensation claim of one million USD a day which had to be compensated by aportionig a bigger portion of land to the Chinese. Who is the intermediary officer who conveyed the oeder to the contractor?
    Soma

  • 5
    11

    This baseless attack on the integrity of one of the most efficient and popular civil servants Sri Lanka has ever seen is totally unethical, and should be condemned by one and all.

    Mr Weeratunga was charged on a technicality and the situation became clear during initial case proceedings. The current ponna government is unable to implement any of its programs due to civil servants refusing to carry them out, citing Weeratunga’s case.

    This cowardly attack by someone who does not have the guts to write under the real name will not detract from the facts of the case.

    If the writer comes out and publishes this crap under his real name, as an experienced defamation lawyer I would like to remind the coward that I will sue his balls off. I will do it pro bono.

    • 2
      1

      Rex
      “The current ponna government is unable to implement any of its programs due to civil servants refusing to carry them out, citing Weeratunga’s case.”
      Precisely. This is bloody serious, no joke.
      Yahapalanists did a fundamental mistake by punishing government servants for taking orders from higher above. I entered the office of a minister friend and heard him say to a man seated at his table ” Apoi apoi matanam be, egollo okkoma dan in writing illanawa”
      Can these suckkers explain on what logic they stopped at Director General TRC leaving out the Chief Account and and further down his clarical staff.
      Even for a non lawyer like me arguments at the court were clear. I am certain that he will be cleared at the appeal.
      Soma

    • 0
      0

      EXPERIENCED DEFAMATION LAWYER/ LW friend- If these are false why cannot you and LW take the newspaper to court- if you have balls!!

      Can you comment on Helping Hambantota Rs 90mn Govt cheque LW wrote to MR sister
      Also many comments on comig on TV to support MR

  • 5
    3

    As an old time in the CCS and SLAS, I was fascinated to read the list of ’eminent’ civil servants the country has had. It is quite a selective list and has left out many much better officers like self.

    But I am most disgusted by the inclusion of Wickrama Weerasooriya in the list. I have nothing against him, but he was a bad political appointee by JR, and was most responsible for allowing foreign universities to sell education in Sri Lanka under private arrangements.

    So whoever the writer is, the write up is dishonest.

  • 2
    0

    Guys please do not give excuses for the wrong ones, Just because someone can not prevent a robbery they do not partner and loot. During the golden period the CJ, Attorney General,Cabral,Judiciary, police , IGP, Journalist,diplomats, airlines, cricket board, unions, Govt owned banks / corporates …..etc…..etc were all involved in politicians bidding, What was totally abnormal was almost made into near normal.If not indirectly politicians in power were provided with government material,man power,illegal campaigning,free bees….etc by civil servants and govt officials. .A police station became the dreaded unsafe place for public. Courts were seen as death warrants.And who ever may be that individual who was facing danger had to dependent on that one phone call.Now the new low (standards set) is being improvised further.

  • 4
    1

    Everyone speaks of “Sil Redi” case. This ex Secretary to the ex President has been dealt with and punishment has been given, though it is under appeal as of today. Now the Courts have granted him permission to leave the country for some time. The question is: Is this “Disgraced Civil Servant” still in possession of a “Diplomatic Passport”? If so, why it is not “Cancelled” or “Impounded”? At a recent interview with a Daily Paper, this man Lalith Weeratunga said: “I did not take orders from anyone. I did my work with honor”. True. When he wrote to SriLankan Air to “Release” a particular female Cabin Crew to work at the Presidential Secretariat , but in actual fact “RELEASED” her to work for” Namal Baby”. This released female cabin crew, admitted at in inquiry that she never, ever worked or entered the Presidential Secretariat. Then, considering the statement given to the Press: “I did my work with honor”, what his WRITTEN instructions to get a “CHOSEN” female employee of the National Carrier portray? In my opinion, this (Weeratunga’s) was then a “PIMP” based at the highest office in the Public Service. I am sorry to say that he is a DISGRACE to a very HONORABLE and well RESPECTED parents,( both well respected teachers) from the village named MADIHE in Matara District. Incidentally, please be informed that this “Weeratunga” is also another “RELATION” of the “Deposed King” Mahinda Rajapakse. “Blood is thicker than water.” That is the “Principle” on which whole of “MR & Co, Inc.” established and functioned. “Champa”: I request you to look into that “FAMILY TREE” and how it functioned, when you defend MR as done in your comment.

    • 1
      1

      Douglas
      You say: “Champa”: I request you to look into that “FAMILY TREE” and how it functioned, when you defend MR as done in your comment.”
      Yes, I tried to defend MR, to give the benefit of doubt.
      But we all know how politicians, all of them, behave when they are in power and out of power.
      They are like chameleons and I think, we the general public are fully aware of them and their behavioural patterns.
      What I am trying to point out is, MR is the best choice at the moment, AS LONG AS he keeps the former cohorts at arms length. If he doesn’t, I don’t think I have to say anything but people will take the decision. The issue is not the choice but the trust, whether people can trust him/them not to repeat past blunders.

  • 1
    0

    LW’s defence was that he was not a beneficiary of the ‘sil rethi’ affair/transaction
    .
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lalith_Weeratunga

    But, was this a valid excuse for a public servant at the topmost rung of the administrative/public service?

    Same excuse can be given by any public servant who carries out a manifestly corrupt transaction.
    In the old days, any public servant who was fined Rs 50 or more, was liable for dismissal.

  • 3
    0

    TD. There were better public servants who have been omitted. H E Tennekoon, the former Secretary to the Treasury, Ambassador, and Governor of the Central Bank was one such public servant who stood his ground under any circumstances. Somewhere in late 1970s, when he was the Governor of the CB, his secretary got a call from PM Premadasa. The Governor was on his way to attend the Monetary Board Meeting. The Secretary ran behind him and told that the PM was on the phone. So, find out what he wants and the G walked away. On his return from the Board Meeting the Sec told G that PM wants to find out the fate of the former Sub Inspector turned actor who had applied for the post of Comptroller of Security of the Bank. So, find out will you and tell him. The actor was in fact the 23rd in the list. The G did not go to tell the PM , the Sec did. Nothing happened to the G until he died in service.

  • 1
    2

    Naga Champa, Don’t try dodge. “The Auditor General queried the CBSL about nearly Rs.2 billion paid in fees for foreign lobbyists, consultants and public relations agencies, especially in the US. In 2014 alone Rs.1.4 was spent. WHERE DID ALL THIS MONEY GO? Even, the US Justice Department is investigating if there was money laundering that took place, with the funds often skirting through the Sri Lanka embassy in Washington.[The Sunday Times of 29.07.2018 – Editorial]

    • 1
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      DPJ
      “WHERE DID ALL THIS MONEY GO?…..”
      Your other comment above itself gives the answer to your own question!!!
      .
      DPJ writes: “…The CB paid out the money on the written instructions of Sajin de Vaas Gunawardene, the then monitoring MP to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Ajith Nivard Cabraal, then Governor of the CB, and Lalith Weeratunga, then Secretary to the President Mahinda Rajapaksa recommended the disbursements in writing….” Those three are answerable for the amount you indicated which is Rs. 2 billion. Tell them to submit receipts.
      Leave Mahinda Rajapaksa alone now. Cheers!

  • 3
    0

    LW could have kept up his spine straight. Greed bent it. No excuse.

  • 3
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    During the tenure, he visited the district secratariat and openly (meeting attended by secrataries, head of departments etc. including district secratary and chief secratary) instructed the government top officials, not to worry about the government change and go ahead with the program. Fortunatly we were lucky, not to abide (unless we too be now in behind the bars) with his instructions but to work according to the prevailed rules and regulations.

  • 4
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    There was aTroika which included Lalith Weeratunga, notorious Sajin Vas and Nirward Cabral who took all the important decisions, among other things, on hiring of PR companies for so called image building. Recently a British MP from Nothern Ireland also became a victim of this modus operandi. Money was not a constraint for them. They also wasted billions of Rupees on Commonwealth CHOGM Thamasha and bidding for Commonwealth games. Nothing will happen to these rascals as their successors are also doing the same thing in the name of good governance. Generally speaking MR was a good person but people around him like, LW, Gamini Senerath, Indika Karunajeewa, that infamous Photographer Sumith Silva and etc used his kindness as a weakness. LW is an intelligent man who was determined to develop technological and digital skills among the younger generation as an investment for the future. That was the only positive legacy left behind by him!
    Now see Austin Fernando. Austin Fernando family is one of the few families which benefitted most from the Yahapalana government. You can see both Father in Law and Son in Law in the parliament. But I think for the first time in the history of Sri lankan Foreign Service you now find politically appointed FATHER IN LAW AND SON IN LAW – That is Austin Fernando in New Delhi and his Son in Law WarNapala in London. Austin Fernando in his long farewell sermon had said he would not accept any government position in future but devote full time for the family. Austin Fernando has very cleverly selected India instead of London so that both Father In Law and son in Law can survive in the respective positions wasting millions of tax payers money for their maintenance. They have no shame- very cleverly occupying two of the Foreign Ministry cadre positions by the same family. Are we short of career diplomats to fill these positions?

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    vishavamithra is talking crap. I think the audito General had said, IF prosecuted accoring to the standard that LAlith Weeratunga was prosecuted, 50% of the govt higher officials would be in jail.

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    Vishwamitra is all too biased a persona to criticise anyone. A yahapalana stooge who cannot see any good in any one who even appears to be opposed to it. So take it with a pinch of salt folks ! Nay, a ton of salt !!

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    When a despicable despot like MR orders a civil servant to perform an illegal task, does such a civil servant have the agency to refuse? What would be the consequences of such refusal?

    We can justifiably consider LW to be an invertebrate, and he was possibly complicit in MR’s excesses. I do not know. What is clear, however, is that there were no structures in place (like an independent judiciary, a robust Public Service Commission etc.) that would have had his back had he refused to carry out the despot’s wishes. LW’s crimes need to be considered fairly in this light.

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    Enough of Rajapakshe bashing. After 31/2 years we have not had enough of Rajapakshes and the name is used and bashed about day in and day out.

    Could we not move on and take to task the present day yahapalanaya crooks and the Economy of the Country and the great betrayal of SL at Geneva by Ping-siri for his own ends with a view to get into the shoes Zeid Rauff Hussein at the UN after the prince’s retirement..

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    Champa: Your comment starting with: “One remarkable aspect of Mahinda……..he took pains to defend Lalith” Can you please tell us the particular course of action Mahinda took to defend Lalith. In my opinion, either you are “defending” Mahinda just by words of mouth or trying to run down the investigative mechanism. Why I say this? If Mahinda really WANTED to defend Lalith, the most appropriate action would have been for him to go to the Investigation Unit and ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY and ACCOUNTABILITY for getting Lalith to execute his “ORDER” to purchase the “Sil Redi” and distribute the bundle of cloth with an attachment of his picture. Did he do that? That aspect did not come up at all at the courts hearing. Not only that he should have volunteered to be a “WITNESS” in the case. Did he do any of that? To tell you, Mahinda was not even seen present in any one of those hearings. So be factual and “Independent” and give up that, sorry to say, “SLAVERY” to any type of corrupt and criminal political personnel. Please don’t take this as personal, because that is how I saw you in your comments.

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      Douglas
      Oh, I am so lazy to relate the story. But, just think who would go to the courts without summons and Lalith W is not worth such generosity from MR.
      MR said that as LW’s boss he would take the responsibility. But it is not the issue. The transaction was a violation of both government financial regulations and election laws. That was the verdict. LW had enough knowledge and experience to realize that it was wrong. He could have stopped it as MR didn’t pull out a gun and threatened him to distribute Sil Redda.
      It is ok to think like that. But I am definitely not a slavery type like LW. I have criticized MR so many times. I take MR’s side in this case as I see him as a good person ruined by others. All the cases of allegation against the past regime were done by others not by MR.

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      Douglas Man

      Is it your good wife who is inviting you for your dinner?
      Its time you go have your dinner with your family.

      You will never educate, inform nor entertain scatter brain Champa, sach, …… Therefore you should avoid these stupidos when you are ready to have your meals.

      See you later.

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    Vishwamithra:
    Lalith Weeratunga did not betray a dignified service. He was part of a service which was meandering into curvy paths. A giant step was when the ‘dignified service’ cooperated in transfer of Aid funds meant for the X’mas day 2004Tsunami. The ‘dignified service’ is now a subservient service.
    There was a time when honesty, integrity and merit were criteria in the service. Now the criterion is corruption/nepotism/impunity.
    Can we overcome? Yes. First decide which of the two baddies to vote. Also if time permits, ponder as to whether or not the language/religion-divide contributed to the mess we are in.

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    Debasement and sycophancy on an epic scale. The Colonials left us a solid Administration that strictly followed the FR (Financial Regulations) and the AR (Administration Regulations). Today, those are hardly referred to at all. At the time of Independence we had the world class Ceylon Civil Service: Its very name indicated a SERVICE that was both CIVIL and served the CIVILLIANS. Then we started going downhill. For the while it became the ‘Public Service’, perhaps no longer civil but at least having the PUBLIC in mind. Then it became Government Servants and the words Civil and Public were dropped. Now they were only supposed to serve the Government of the Day, meaning the politicians and not the public. The biggest calamity was when Mrs B did away with “Permanent Secretaries” – career and brilliant officials from the Civil Service who rose up the ranks to head the Administration of the Ministries. By definition they were PERMANENT members of the Civil Service; they were not there to serve the whims and fancies of the Ministers. Mrs B axed them all and stuffed the ministries with mere ‘Secretaries’, no longer permanent and no longer from the Civil Service, which service which too was made to disappear. Disaster was inevitable until we had this man sitting at the top of the dung heap.

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