Ex-EPF head admits he approved some of Saman Kumara’s bond deals

It was revealed at the presidential commission of inquiry probing the bond scam yesterday that an internal inquiry had been initiated against Assistant Governor of the Central Bank and former head of its EPF Department R. A. A. Jayalath.

When Commission member Justice Prasanna Jayawardena questioned Jayalath on the internal inquiry, the latter said that explanation had been called from him on market manipulation, violation of investment trading guidelines and three other issues.

He was questioned by the Counsel Chanaka de Silva appearing for former Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran.

Jayalath told the Commission that he had not done anything wrong and there was no charge sheet against him; only explanations had been sought as regards certain issues in the Central Bank EPF Department while he was its superintendent.

Jayalath said, on being questioned, that he had given approval for some of the EPF bond transactions carried out by Saman Kumara, who had worked in the front office of the EPF Department and is now under interdiction.

Counsel de Silva: Did you apply for the post of Deputy Governor of the Central Bank?

Jayalath: Yes.

De Silva accused Jayalath of lying to the commission, but the latter denied the allegation.

Counsel de Silva asked whether Jayalath had not succeeded in becoming a Deputy Governor because explanation had been called from over five issues. The latter answered in the affirmative.

Perpetual Treasuries CEO Kasun Palisena has been summoned to appear before the commission next Tuesday. He has also been ordered to hand over all his communication devices including his laptop computer and mobile phones to the CID unit attached to the commission. Assistant Solicitor General Yasantha Kodagoda informed the commission that those devices were needed for a digital forensic investigation.

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