The Financial Crimes Division sent out fresh teams yesterday to arrest Nalaka Godahewa, former Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). He is wanted in connection with the SEC transfer of five million rupees to Tharunyata Hetak (A tomorrow for youth), an organisation headed by Parliamentarian Namal Rajapaksa.
According to investigations the money said to be allocated for an awareness programme among rural youth on investing in the stock market was transferred to a third party bank account in the United States as payment for a Hip hop dance group that performed at the ‘Carlton Super Sevens Rugby Tournament’ last year.
In Mr. Godahewa’s absence, the detectives yesterday recorded a statement from his wife. She had claimed that her husband was away from Colombo and was not due till tonight. An FCID official said if Mr. Godahewa did not turn up, Police would go to courts tomorrow to seek an open warrant for his arrest. The official said he was now evading arrest and had even failed to inform them about his whereabouts.
Dhammika Manjira Perera, a former Deputy Director General of SEC and Ronny Ibrahim, a former Director were arrested on Friday. They have been remanded till Monday.
On behalf of Mr. Godahewa a lawyer has sought time until next week for him to appear before the FCID for the investigation.
Earlier the Supreme Court on Friday turned down a fundamental rights (FR) petition filed by Mr. Godahewa who sought a court order to prevent the police from arresting him over the alleged illegal financial transaction.