The President’s Media Division in a statement yesterday said local media reports, based on a report published by Singapore media, quoting an unnamed Singapore Foreign Ministry spokesman on Sri Lanka’s request to extradite former Central Bank Governor Arjun Mahendran are misleading.
The PMD said media reports staing that Singapore rejected President’s allegation it was sheltering the former central bank chief as Colombo failed to provide documents to support extradition proceedings, cannot be accepted as the official stand of the Singapore government.
The PMD said so far no official reply has been communicated by Singapore to local officials on the matter.
The PMD noted that the last time a Singapore Foreign Ministry official had commented on the issue was when President Sirisena officially requested from Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to extradite former Central Bank Governor Arjun Mahendran, believed to be in Singapore.
A request to extradite Mahendran to Sri Lanka has been made officially to Singapore authorities through the Defence Secretary on May 28, 2018. Singapore authorities have informed the Defence Secretary and other relevant local officials that the Singapore Attorney General was looking into the matter.
The PMD said matters related to extradition of individuals has been stipulated in the Singapore Extradition Act. According to Criminal Investigation Department submissions to the Colombo Fort Magistrate via a B report (B266018) Mahendran has committed an offence similar to that of an offence prescribed in Article 18 in the second chapter in the Singapore Extradition Act.
On the basis of CID submissions, a ‘Red Notice’ for the arrest of Mahendran has been issued by Interpol on April 19, 2018. A copy of the notice has been attached with the documents sent to Singapore officials requesting the extradition of Mahendran to Sri Lanka.
President Sirisena acting on the above developments made a request to the Singapore Prime Minister to extradite Mahendran to Sri Lanka during his recent visit there.
The PMD in its release stated the Sri Lankan Government has sent all relevant documents to Singapore officials on Mahendran’s extradition, hence, based on the dossier sent by Sri Lanka, Singapore could have issued notice to Mahendran.
The PMD statement further said the Attorney General of Singapore has informed his Sri Lankan counterpart via the Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry to provide further details on the Mahendran matter and currently the Attorney General is preparing a comprehensive document to be sent to Singapore.
The PMD stressed that in this backdrop, media reports quoting an unnamed Singapore Foreign Ministry official cannot be accepted as the official stand of the Singapore Government.
Mahendran, a Singapore national of Sri Lankan origin, was accused of passing sensitive information to outside parties in 2015 and 2016 bond auctions allegedly causing losses of over US$ 11 million to the state.