Rs 19 m to Pushpa Rajapaksa Foundation : CICT says it was a charitable donation | Sunday Observer

Rs 19 m to Pushpa Rajapaksa Foundation : CICT says it was a charitable donation

The Colombo International Container Terminals Limited (CICT) has reiterated that its payment of Rs. 19,410,000 (equivalent to US$150,000), to the Pushpa Rajapaksa Foundation was a donation, in good faith, for the construction of houses for the less privileged.

“Once funding is allocated, CICT believes that the funding so allocated would be used for the said projects by the receiving agencies, without

CICT having to play a supervisory role as to the implementation of such projects”, the statement from the Chinese company said.

The statement added that the donation had been made long after the project concession agreement for the Colombo South terminal had been signed and construction work on the terminal had already commenced.

“This payment is clearly reflected in our audited accounts for the relevant year. We therefore categorically reject the implication that the payment is tantamount to a bribe,” CICT said in its media release.

“This issue had already been brought up in the media and was investigated by the relevant authorities three years ago. However, in the wake of these latest reports, we reiterate and bring to the notice of the media and the public that CICT made a donation to the said foundation, as part of its commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and did not intend it to be, nor believe it to be otherwise.”

“CICT has already provided the required information on this matter to the authorities. The company has no further information to provide on the matter, other than for what has already been provided.” The company had also supported other deserving projects such as providing support to the victims of the Koslanda landslide in 2016 with cash donations and rations; major sponsorship of the Wheelchair Tennis program of Sri Lanka Tennis Association (SLTA); and a donation through the China Merchant Charity Foundation of foldable intraocular lenses and cartridges worth $ 60,000 along with an allocation of $ 200,000 for cataract surgeries for needy patients under the ‘Tribute to love, China – Sri Lanka Free Cataract Surgery Campaign’ etc, the statement added.