Rajitha Reiterates MR Cronies Banked US $ 500 M In Dubai
The Cabinet Spokesman, Minister Rajitha Senaratne today reiterated that the government had reliable information on eight accounts maintained by some top-notch politicians and officials of the former regime in several Banks in Dubai, with deposits amounting to more than US $500 million.
Speaking to media in Colombo today Senaratne said that the government expects to freeze these accounts with the UAE government’s help and bring back the money which were plundered by corrupt officials and politicians of the past regime.
While noting that there was an ongoing investigation, Senaratne said the names of the account holders will be revealed after the investigations are over.
Disclosing the amount of monies deposited in some of the accounts Senaratne went on to say that in one account there was more than US $500 million while another two had US $1.086 million and 1.8 million respectively.
When a journalist said that Parliamentarian Namal Rajapaksa has refuted claims that he had maintained an account in a Dubai bank with deposits amounting to US $500 million, Minister Senaratne replied that no one had accused Namal, the eldest son of Rajapaksa.
“If the cap fits, Namal can wear it” Rajitha replied in response to the question raised by the journalist.
Earlier Senaratne had said that Sri Lankan investigators have located more than $2 billion that was secretly transferred to accounts in Dubai by figures close to the administration of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa.
“We have information that more than $10 billion, more than our country’s foreign reserves, is kept outside the country by those closely related to the last government,” Senaratne had earlier said.
However Rajapaksa family members have dismissed as “nonsense” the government’s purported claims..
The government has gathered information on eight Dollar Accounts held in foreign banks by members of a VVIP family of the previous regime and the names of account holders will be disclosed after the ongoing investigations are over, Cabinet Spokesman and Minister Rajitha Senarathe said today.
He told the media at the weekly cabinet news briefing that in one account they had deposited US$ 1.86 billion,US$ 1.8 billion in another and US$ 500 million in yet another account.
When a journalist demanded Minister Senaratne to disclose the names of those allegedly held illegal dollar accounts in the banks in foreign countries, he declined and said it would affect the investigations.
Responding to a statement made by a member of a VVIP family disowning the dollar accounts, Minister Senaeratne said no one should jump the gun if they were innocent but vowed to disclose the names of account holders at the right time and also to bring them before the law on charges of money laundering and plundering of state resources.
Minister Senaratne appealed to the media not to give publicity to the investigations on illegal dollar accounts held by Sri Lankans as it would hamper the inquiry and added a few countries had expressed concerns on certain local media reports recently.
“Many countries have flexible legislations to deal with black money deposited in overseas banks. Only countries like Monaco have strict rigid laws on this matter. Therefore, Sri Lankan sleuths do not find the task impossible and they are confident that they would trace all illegal dollar accounts held by Sri Lankans and those who held them before long,” Minister Senaratne stressed.
He added that the US Federal Reserve (USFR) was assisting Sri Lanka in the investigations as the USFR had data on each and every dollar account held in any bank in anywhere in the world.
(Sandun A Jayasekera) – See more at: http://www.dailymirror.lk/91461/vvip-dollar-account-holders-govt-to-name-names-soon#sthash.aW9qzXRQ.dpuf