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Hizbullah not suited to be an MP in the future – AG

Parliamentarian Prof Ashu Marasinghe told Parliament today that the Attorney General’s (AG) Department is of the opinion that M.L.A.M Hizbullah is not suitable to be an MP in the future because he signed contracts related to the Batticaloa campus (Pvt) Ltd.

Marasinghe who is the Chairman of the Oversight Committee on Education and Human Resources Development said the AG found that there was a conflict of interest when Hizbullah signed agreements with the BOI and the Youth Affairs Ministry on behalf of the Batticoloa University.

At the time Hizbullah had been a Deputy Minister as well as the Chairman of the Hira Foundation that owned the Batticoloa Campus.

The AG’s letter states that “ in terms of article 91 E of the constitution Mr Hizbullah would not have been entitled to sit and vote as a member of parliament with effect from June 11, 2013, which the date in which MOU between the Sri Lanka Hira Foundation and the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Skills Development signed by him as it’s chairman.”

AG department had said that Hizbullah is not suitable to be a member of the parliament in the future.

Marasinghe also said that the committee had also found that the 35 acres of land which the Batticaloa campus is built were given in lease for 35 years by then Minister of Mahaweli Development and now President Maithripala Sirisena for Rs 14,000 per acre per year.

“So the annual amount for the land is Rs 491,200,” he added.

But the lease agreement for the land was signed in 2018 when President Sirisena was again the Minister of Mahaweli Development.

“Apart from the 35 acres, he had illegally constructed the campus by claiming eight more acres which were not in the lease agreement,” Marasinghe said.