Former Army Chief General Sarath Fonseka has claimed that former President Mahinda Rajapaksa had moved 2000 troops into Colombo three days before the election results in an attempt to stage a coup.
In an exclusive interview to NDTV, Fonseka said that troops brought in from the Northern Command were deployed in and around Colombo in two circles – one in the metropolitan area around Temple Trees, Rajapaksa’s official residence; and an outer circle that covered the Election Commission office.
“If any security is needed the Inspector General of Police has to be informed by Election Commissioner,” said Fonseka. But no rules were followed in this case, he said. Fonseka, who was arrested by Rajapaksa for sedition in 2010, says the new Government has proof of this and that they ordered the troops back into their garrisons after the results came out.
Mangala Samaraweera, the Foreign Minister and a close aide to the new President told NDTV that Rajapaksa held a meeting at Temple Trees in the late hours of January 9, as votes were being counted, attended by his brother Gotabaya, the Foreign Minister and the Chief Justice among others. “At around 4.00 a.m., the Attorney General was summoned along with the army chief and IG of Police,” said Samaraweera.
The Government has ordered the CID to conduct an inquiry into the incident. But many have been suspicious of its intentions after President Sirisena took over leadership of the SLFP, Rajapaksa’s party, this morning, effectively making it an SLFP-led government.
Both Fonseka and Samaraweera have maintained that the inquiry will be fair and action taken.
“If there is sufficient evidence, then the law will take its course,” said Samaraweera at his office in the Ministry.
Source - Daily FT