It seems President Maithripala Sirisena has deliberately skipped his own brother – Priyantha Sirisena’s funeral that was held in Polonnaruwa this evening, sources close to the President told Colombo Telegraph.
Although the President was due to return from his official visit to China on March 28, it seems he has not returned although other officials including Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera has returned to Sri Lanka.
Priyantha Sirisena aka Raju died on Wednesday evening at about 7 pm succumbing to injuries received from an axe attack. His attacker identified as Don Ishara Lakmal Saputhanthri surrendered to the Police the next day and confessed that he attacked Priyantha since the victim verbally assaulted his parents using foul language.
The President’s deliberate avoidance of the funeral comes as no surprise as his relationship with his brother appears to have been dented over the years.
When the deceased brother was charged with damaging a Wildlife Department office and attacking an official in 2012, the President who was then a Minister of the Rajapaksa regime said he believes it is due to a sin he committed in a previous birth that he has been given such a brother.
Holding a press conference on October 19, 2012 Sirisena said it is he who gave instructions to the Police to immediately arrest his brother and ensure he is not granted bail.
“I will not give chances to anyone who engages in wrongful acts – not even to my siblings. If I hadn’t given instructions to enforce the law, he might not have been arrested even by this point. . .I have held various positions in the political arena for close to 24 years and I believe I got those chances due to some meritorious act I committed in my last birth. Similarly I also think that I was given a sibling like this due to a sin that I committed in a previous life,” he said.