United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) MPs Prasanna Ranaweera told that he, along with UPFA MP Niroshan Premarathna and United National Party (UNP) MP Ananda Aluthgamage (who has crossed over to the Opposition) have been summoned to the CID as part of its inquiry.
He added that the CID had initially summoned them to give statements this week. “But we obtained new dates to go to the CID, as we had to attend Parliament. We are hoping to go next week,” he said.
Mr Ranaweera was captured on television slapping a policeman and throwing chili powder at police officers guarding the Speaker, during chaotic scenes in Parliament on November 16, during a vote on the second No-Confidence Motion against the short-lived Rajapaksa Government. He, however, insisted that Speaker Karu Jayasuriya was to blame for what happened. “It was the arbitrary actions of the Speaker that led to the situation. He failed to heed our appeals,” the MP alleged.
Police Spokesman Superintendent of Police (SP) Ruwan Gunasekara said, while the investigation was ongoing, a preliminary report has already been forwarded to the Attorney General’s Department.
Meanwhile, on Friday (22), Deputy Speaker Ananda Kumarasiri tabled the report compiled by the Parliamentary Committee headed by him, which was appointed to probe the unruly incidents in the Chamber on November 14, 15 and 16. The report has been forwarded to the Parliament’s Ethics & Privileges Committee.
The report of the 6-member committee chaired by the Deputy Speaker, had recommended taking action against 59 MPs (54 UPFA MPs, 4 UNP MPs and 1 JVP MP) for their unruly behaviour inside the Chamber.
UPFA MPs strongly objected to the CID inquiry, arguing that it violated their “rights and privileges” as MPs and urged Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to stop it. The Speaker, however, pointed out that the CID investigation was a separate probe and he could not interfere in a police investigation.
Deputy Speaker Mr Kumarasiri told that the Ethics & Privileges Committee will take up the report compiled by his committee and, if it deems it necessary, will summon individual MPs who have been cited in the report to explain themselves.
(The Sunday Times)