Top level authorities have urged the Criminal Investigation Department and the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption to pursue allegations leveled against the past interim administrations of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), authoritative sources disclosed.The Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) has uncovered a series of irregularities, malpractices and financial corruption committed by the previous interim administrations of SLC.
COPE Chairman, D.E.W. Gunasekera told The Nation in an interview that unlike the activities of the previous COPE, the current COPE under his stewardship pursued all allegations and had urged the authorities at the highest level to direct the CID and the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption to begin probes.
Accordingly, investigations have begun and a number of SLC officials from the previous administrations have been quizzed by the CID, The Nation learns.
The SLC has been a hotbed of corruption since 1995 after Sri Lanka won the cricket World Cup with several people who headed the administration except for the Rienzie Wijetilleke Committee, known to have had vested interests with SLC becoming a money making gold mine.
Some of the glaring irregularities spotlighted by COPE are SLC’s statement of accounts, which recorded a 524 per cent increase from the period July 6, 2011 to November 18, 2011 in comparison to expenditures in 2009. The D.S. de Silva regime had focused on the following irregularities:
(1). Expending excessive expenses for the under-19 and Lanka ‘A’ team matches;
(2). Increasing the national cricket squad up to 100, which incurred added expenses;
(3). Granting of the construction of Hambantota Suriyawewa cricket ground to the Port Authority, which SLC contended because the Port Authority had the necessary equipment;
(4). Abandoning the Dambulla Cricket Stadium and taking decision instead to construct a ground in Hambantota;
(5). The robbery of the compact disc containing expenditure details of the 2011 World Cup;
(6). The appointment of the World Cup Tournament Director Suraj Dandeniya;
(7). Making the total financial commitment Rs.6.1 billion while SLC’s entire assets being Rs.3.1 billion;
(8) Granting top level tournament telecasting rights to Summerset Entertainment Venture company.