Colombo, Aug 10 (newsin.asia) – Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister, Ravi Karunanayake resigned from his ministerial portfolio on Thursday amidst allegations that he was involved in a corruption scandal.
Karunanayake resigned following a special statement made by him in Parliament.
The former minister said all the allegations leveled against him were ‘baseless’ and he had resigned to protect the image of his government.
Karunanayake’s name, in recent weeks, had surfaced in a controversial Central Bank bond scam which is now being investigated. He has continuously denied any wrong doing and said he had no connection with the incident in question. He said only time would prove his honesty.
Karunanayake who has been a member of the ruling United National Party (UNP) for 32 years, is battling accusations that he was staying at a luxury apartment in Colombo for which the lease was paid by a suspect in the Central Bank bond scam, raising serious questions on his honesty.
Karunanayake said the deal with the apartment was handled by his family and he was not aware of its contents or parties involved.
“I sacrifice my position for democracy and good governance. I have always conducted myself in a transparent manner,” he said.
The former Minister said that with equal pride he would now take his place among the backbenchers in Parliament, knowing that he had sacrificed his position for the greater good.
Karunanayake resigned ahead of a no confidence vote requested by the a group of opposition legislators.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, speaking after the former minister’s statement, said these developments highlighted the honesty and good governance of the government in allowing the judiciary to function independently.