President Rajapaksa’s transportation costs so far this year has mounted to a whopping Rs. 2500 million, making a fine example of the lavish lifestyles led by the Rajapaksas while the masses struggle to ends meet.
These appalling figures were disclosed by JVP Leader MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake in parliament. He said the total Presidential expenses that were estimated to remain at Rs. 8569 million this year has already reached Rs. 10490 million so far.
MP Dissanayake in his speech gave a detailed breakdown of the transportation costs of the President. “The President has spent Rs. 22 million as transportation in local trips and Rs. 800 million during foreign trips. An additional Rs. 410 million has been spent for fuel while Rs. 317 million has been allocated for vehicle maintenance and another Rs. 570 million has been listed as transportation costs,” he explained.
Speaking furthermore, he said the new makeover given to the surrounding walls of the Temple trees where potted plants were embedded to the wall in an attempt to beautify it, costs Rs. 0.3 million every month to be maintained.
He also criticized the rate at which government properties in various locations are being renovated and taken over for President Rajapaksa’s use as seen with the most recent examples in Mahiyangana, Kataragama and Kankasanthurai.
“He is already occupying the President’s house and the Temple trees. Why does he need to construct ‘palaces’ in locations that takes less than two hours to travel? The abuse of state funds and resources is further continued by his children as they buy shoes worth Rs. 150,000 a pair, cars worth Rs. 500 million and shut down the commercial capital of the city for ten days every year so that they can race up and down the roads,” he said.
He pointed out that the systematic collapse in the local production sector and the rampant corruption has led to about 20% of the population with the highest income to access 55.1% of the country’s revenue while the 10% of the population is left with less than 10% of the finances.