Lack of vehicles jeopardizing MR’s security - Media Coordinator
March 25, 2015 05:36 pm
The lack of vehicles to transport the 213 security personnel assigned to Mahinda Rajapaksa has jeopardized his security, according to the former president’s Media Coordinator Mr Rohan Welivita.
Referring to the security provided to Mr Rajapaksa, cabinet spokesman Minister Rajitha Senaratne said at a press conference yesterday (24) that the former president has been provided with two high security vehicles, one ‘dummy’ vehicle, one Defender jeep, one Toyota Land Cruiser and one double cab.
He further said that 108 soldiers and 105 policemen have been assigned for the protection of the former president and that these security personnel have been provided with three double cabs, one Land Cruiser, two vans, one bus and eight motorcycles for their use.
According to minister Senaratne, a total of 21 vehicles have been provided for the use of the former president.
However, Mr Welivita rejected this statement and declared that the former president has been provided with only six vehicles at present.
“All the vehicles that were assigned to the police personnel in the former president’s security detail were withdrawn on 03 March 2015 by letter bearing reference number SP/04/0/8 issued by the Secretary to the President Mr P.B. Abeykoon,” he said in a letter.
He conceded that there are in fact 108 soldiers and 105 policemen who have been assigned to protect former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, as Minister Rajitha Senaratne said, but claimed they have no vehicles.
He stated that former Secretary to the President Mr Lalith Weeratunga wrote to the present Secretary to the President Mr P.B. Abeykoon on 16 March highlighting that problems have arisen as there are no vehicles to transport the army and police personnel in the former president’s security detail.
“There has been no response to this letter as yet,” Mr Welivita said.
He said there is an ever present threat to the life of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa and his security should be a matter of the “highest priority.”
“It need not be stressed that the lack of vehicles to transport his security personnel has jeopardized the former president’s security,” he said.