Sri Lanka President orders inquiry over SriLankan Airbus deal after UK bribery revelations
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has ordered a probe into a controversial deal to purchase over a dozen Airbus aircraft, where a UK investigation had found that bribes had been paid an ‘agent’ who was the wife of a SriLankan Airlines executive.
“President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has ordered a comprehensive investigation into reports of allegations over financial irregularities said to have committed during the deal between SriLankan Airlines and Airbus SE for the purchase of aircrafts,” his office said.
“An English language weekly in its today’s issue (02) and few websites yesterday (01) have published reports describing alleged misdeeds relating to the transaction between the national carrier and Europe based Airbus Industries” a statement from the President’s office said.
“Upon seeing these reports President Rajapaksa immediately ordered officials to initiate a full inquiry into these allegations, covering all aspects of the deal and report back to him.”
Up to 16 million dollars had been offered in payments to the agent, a court filing in the UK, based on information obtained from Airbus said.
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At least 2 million dollars had been paid. The agent had been engaged by Airbus in 2013 and has had dealing at least until October 2015, according to court documents. (Colombo/Feb02/2020)