Stormy COPE session over Treasury Bond probe:
Timeline to complete investigation
The Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) meeting on the Treasury
Bond investigation turned into a stormy session, on Friday evening, with
members exchanging heated arguments over the committee’s future action
with regard to the probe.
New Central Bank Governor Dr Indrajith Coomaraswami, Deputy Governors
Dr Nandalal Weerasinghe and P Samarasiri appeared before the Committee,
on Friday evening. COPE members cross questioned officers with regard to
the controversial bond sales on February 27, 2015 and March 29, 2016.
COPE proceedings took a new turn when UNP MPs suggested that the
Committee should obtain evidence, separately, from individuals involved
in the Bond issue. This proposal, however, met with heavy resistance
from other members as they thought it would delay the entire process.
Non-UNP members of COPE fired salvos at Deputy Minister Sujeewa
Senasinghe for asking questions from witnesses in a seemingly abrasive
manner. In response, Senasinghe vehemently denied allegations saying in
his capacity as a COPE committee member, had every right to gather
information on the matter.
At this point COPE decided to come up with a roadmap with a specific
timeline to fasttrack the investigations pertaining to the controversial
Treasury Bond issue. COPE sources said Committee Chairman Sunil
Handunnetti would present a roadmap at the next meeting on August 23.
COPE would adhere to this roadmap and conclude investigations on the
specific date given in the timeline.COPE sources also added that this
decision was taken to avoid undue delays in completing investigations.