Govt. to reveal list of helicopter riders

The Government yesterday revealed its plans to table the long-list of people and their controversial use of helicopters of the Sri Lanka Air Force in Parliament.

State Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene, in response to a question raised by UPFA Joint Opposition MP Udaya Gammanpila, told the House that the list contained the details of those who used the helicopters at the cost of the State and their destinations during 2015 and 2016. According to the State Minister, only the President and the Prime Mister are entitled to use helicopters at the cost of the State.

“In addition, the Air Force, on the request of the Foreign Affairs Ministry and on the approval of the Defence Ministry, provides helicopters free of charge to the heads of state of other countries when they were here in Sri Lanka. Any other person who uses the Air Force helicopters, upon the approval of the Defence Ministry, must pay for their use,” he added, promising to table the details of payments made and those outstanding.

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