Wijeyadasa frustrated over not getting a portfolio – SLPP Ministers
By Faadhila Thassim
A group of SLPP Ministers fired a salvo at MP Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe on Friday (16), claiming the latter is opposing the Port City Economic Commission Bill as he is frustrated over not being offered a ministerial portfolio by the Government.
The group included Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage and State Ministers Shehan Semasinghe, Kanaka Herath and Kanchana Wijesekera.
Addressing the Media, Aluthgamage said if Rajapakshe had opposing views in relation to the Bill, he should have voiced his opinion at the Party meetings but he never attends them. “Rajapakshe voted in favour of the 20th Amendment to the Constitution based on a last minute discussion held with him at the Parliament car park,” he alleged.
Following his opposition to the Bill, Rajapakshe held a Media briefing where he claimed that President Gotabaya Rajapaksa had threatened him over a phone call, while the President had only spoken to him seeking clarification, Aluthgamage said.
“Rajapakshe’s personal animosity with the National Organiser of SLPP Basil Rajapaksa should not be expressed in his views opposing the Colombo Port City Economic Commission Bill because Basil Rajapaksa has nothing to do with it,” he added.
Speaking further, Aluthgamage alleged that those opposing the Colombo Port City Economic Commission Bill are doing so in line with different political agendas and are also being paid to do so by certain foreign countries.
He added the Opposition is afraid that the incumbent Government, by way of the Colombo Port City will be able to draw investors and pave way for economic development.
Commenting on the U.S. Ambassador’s view that there could be money laundering by way of the Colombo Port City, he said this will not take place as the Money Laundering Act will be applicable to the portion of land.
He added the opposing views of JVP Leader Anura Kumara Dissanayaka that the Bill will be passed by force with a two-third majority is also invalid as only a simple majority is required.
Aluthgamage said that the decision whether or not the Bill is inconsistent to the Constitution will be arrived at by the Supreme Court as it is due to examine petitions filed against the Bill adding that it has not superseded any existing provisions.
He also stated that the Attorney General has also not opposed the Draft Bill on the basis that is not inconsistent with the Constitution and is not subject to any prohibition or restriction imposed by the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution and that it may be enacted by Parliament.
A decision in regards to the Bill will not be arrived at in contravention to the decision of the Supreme Court and if the Court states that Amendments should be made to the Bill, these will be abided by, he added.
He was addressing a media briefing at the Ministry of Agriculture.