Minister of Special Assignments Dr. Sarath Amunugama yesterday took a swipe at his beleaguered Cabinet colleague Minister of Justice and Buddha Sasana Dr. Wijayadasa Rajapakshe without naming him.
Any minister who was not willing to respect the principle of collective Cabinet responsibility had to give up his or her ministerial positions, Dr. Amunugama said fielding questions from journalists after attending a ceremony in Galagedera.
Dr. Amunugama said minister were duty bound by the collective Cabinet responsibility and there was no way any of them could violate it without having to face the consequences of his or her action.
Minister Rajapakshe told the media on Saturday in Kandy that he would not resign of his own volition and President Maithripala Sirisena was free to take any action against him. He said he had not done any wrong. “I have only voiced my opposition to the handover of the Hambantota Port to a Chinese company on a 99-year lease and refused to interfere with the Attorney General’s Department or the judiciary. I am also against moves being made to haul up before war crimes courts the military personnel who defeated terrorism.”
Previously addressing a meeting elsewhere Dr. Rajapaksha lambasted the Health Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, who had called for action against him for being critical of government policies. He said Senaratne was preoccupied with safeguarding the interests of the South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) to the neglect of battling dengue and dealing with other issues concerning the Health Ministry.