By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan
Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran yesterday accused ‘Colombo’ of a plot to oust him from office as the Chief Minister of the Northern Province.
Standing on a podium set at the entrance of his residence in Jaffna yesterday, the former Supreme Court Judge told a sea of supporters congregated there that when Regional Development Minister Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka visited Jaffna two weeks ago he had said that ‘very soon Wigneswaran will be ripped off his post’.
He noted: “Between us there isn’t any issue and I was wondering why he made that statement, but it provided a clue that the plot was hatched in Colombo,” he added.
On seeing the overwhelming support he has been receiving since the ‘no confidence’ motion was brought against him, the Chief Minister asserted that he ‘was on the right path’.
“I knew there was a plot to oust me. I am not worried about the persons behind it but I know how it was planned to corner me,” the Chief Minister said.
In his view the corruption charges against the four ministers, whether probed or not, would ‘land him in trouble’.
“They knew I am going to take some strict action against our Ministers in the Northern Province as there were reports regarding these ministers. They knew that as the Chief Minister I will have to deal with it one way or the other. I will have to ‘protect’ them or take action against them. If I protect them, I can be framed for favouring them and if I punish them, I will be accused of doing so and that is exactly what had happened,” he pointed out.
He said that when he dealt with the corruption charges, they brought in the ‘No confidence’ motion against him.
He also noted that when the Council was deliberating on serious matters many members would waste time talking about irrelevant issues. “How the ‘No Confidence’ motion is going to be dealt with and what is going to happen next is not going to make me sad, but I can assure you that we will continue with the tasks we undertook,” he stressed.
Noting that there is no defeat or victory for a man who does his job correctly, the Chief Minister reiterated that it was the Council members who tabled requests for him to probe the corruption charges against the Ministers. “The Councillors never came forward in person and complained about the corruption allegations against the ministers. Instead, they sneaked to the media about it to make the paper popular,” he noted. He said that the probe committee was appointed in accordance with the rules and conditions of the NPC.
According to him, the Committee proved that two of the four ministers were found guilty while the charges against the other two were inconclusive due to the absence of the complainant on that day.
He added that since the complainant did not turn up that day, the two accused ministers went about claiming that they were not guilty of corruption charges but in the meantime there were more reports mounting against them.
“When there was a considerable number of charge sheets, we decided to hold another round of inquiries,” he noted.
He said that if corruption issues were not addressed they will have to face a worse scenario later on.