President receives complaints on irregularities allegedly committed by Ports Minister

President receives complaints on irregularities allegedly committed by Ports Minister

23 February 2021 07:43 am

A number of complaints have been received to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on irregularities allegedly committed by Minister of Ports and Naval Affairs Rohitha Abeygunawardena.

In the observation that the packet of rice meal, which so far has been wrapped in paper and packed in a polythene bag, provided free of charge to port employees is not safe, Minister Abeygunawardena has introduced a box. This introduction, nevertheless, has increased the price of a rice packet up to Rs. 120, considered of which the port employees pointed out that a commission of Rs. 12 is being sent to the Minister even from the bun given to the workers.

Despite the fact that the monthly food expenditure of port employees could be slashed down to around Rs. million, the numbers have risen up to Rs. 100 million, sources disclosed.

In the midst of the dispute, the number of hotels owned by Abeygunawardena has increased up to 12, they added.

Accordingly, various parties have complained to the President about the situation and many other irregularities allegedly committed by the Minister in the recent past, pushing President Rajapaksa to address the Chairman of Sri Lanka Ports Authority, former Army Commander Daya Rathnayake to take the necessary actions immediately.

Emphasising that Rathnayake has the power over Ports affairs in his capacity as the Chairman, the President has instructed him not to let Minister Abeygunawardena act on his free will, and inform him back in any event should the Minister pose any form of resistance, sources further disclosed.