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Select Committees to probe COPE allegations

COLOMBO: The Government yesterday agreed to appoint Parliamentary Select Committees to probe each of the allegations and issues contained in the COPE (Committee on Public Enterprises) report.

Health Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva at a special SLFP press briefing at the SLFI yesterday said “we have decided to appoint the select committees in response to the demands made by the UNP in Parliament.”

He said instead of one select committee they will appoint a total of 24 to probe each of the 24 cases referred to in the report.

The Government has also agreed to grant a one day debate in Parliament on various statements and allegations made on current issues including MP Sripathi Sooriyarachchi’s claim of a secret deal between the Government and the LTTE at the last Presidential Election.

The Minister said that if the majority of parties held the view that select committees should be appointed to look into all these issues as well, the Government will not hesitate to do so.

The Government would also take steps to appoint select committees to probe the unpatriotic statements made by the Opposition Leader here and abroad. If any party wanted a select committee to probe the attempts to buy over MPs, that request too can be granted, the Minister added.

Agrarian Development Minister Maithreepala Sirisena said the UNP leader has joined hands to launch a conspiracy with the LTTE to oust the President and topple the Government.

He said the LTTE which has been defamed internationally by the Government’s action to ensure the national security, is looking for an ally to get their wishes fulfilled and moreover buy time to bounce back.

 

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