Commission expects classified material soon | Sunday Observer

Commission expects classified material soon

In the wake of continuous evidence received on a number of flight and charter flight booking cancellations that took place in an arbitrary manner at SriLankan Airlines, the Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI), inquiring into frauds in SriLankan Airlines, Mihin Lanka and SriLankan Catering, expects to receive important classified material related to the these activities from abroad, the Sunday Observer learns.

Sources within the Commission said that by next week with assistance from that material, “the Commission will get on to the re-fleeting and cancellation of aircraft.”

The Commission last week revealed that former Sri Lankan Ambassador to the USA, Jaliya Wickramasuriya had booked a charter flight through SriLankan Airlines to come to Mattala via Dubai from Washington DC in April, 2013.

The charter flight ordered by Wickramasuriya, the cousin of the former President, Mahinda Rajapaksa, had cost the Airline Rs. 7.8 million and was booked without the consent of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA).

The Financial Compliance Manager at SriLankan Airlines, Kasun Rathnayake told the Commission that the airline failed to recover the payment despite several attempts.

When the Airline tried to retrieve the payments from the MFA, but the Ministry officials had refused, stating that the booking was not done with the approval of the MFA.

It was also revealed that the national carrier had booked rooms at a hotel in Dubai on the same dates for 100 guests. An email sent by the then CEO of SriLankan, Kapila Chandrasena had the names of Jaliya Wickramasuriya and his family in the guests’ list.

The term of office of the Presidential Commission which was due to end on February 15, 2019, has been extended up to May 30, 2019 by an Extraordinary Gazette notification issued by the President Maithripala Sirisena on February 7.