Tuesday, January 19, 2010

How Fonseka Cleverly Planned to Continue War and Corruption.

Fonseka planned to continue the war for a long time thereby earning every year from weapons sales made with his son-in-law Danuna and from deals made alone. In a well published interview with BBC in June 2008 he aired these views unashamedly. He said, "Even if we finish the war, capture the whole of the north, still the LTTE might have some members joining them," he said. "There are people who believe in Tamil nationalism. The LTTE might survive another even two decades with about 1,000 cadres. But we will not be fighting in the same manner. It might continue as an insurgency forever."


This was not his prediction but expectation. However the government had other plans and the government’s plan succeeded in ridding the country of terrorists.

Fonseka knew that he was just a tool in the hands of the Defence Secretary in winning the war. And Fonseka knew the war is ending by May 11, 2009. Even laymen knew it! That was when he made one last ditch attempt to earn big money in an unprecedented way.

Entertaining purchasing officers to luxury is an old trick played by some traders. It is particularly common in the defence trade when third world countries are involved. Since Fonseka assumed the role of the purchasing officer, he and his family was entitled to spend a week in luxury at the Fujitsu Royal Hotel in China. Their trip started on May 11th and lasted till May 17th.

Room numbers 1620, 1630, 1620A, 1618, 1519, 1521, 1626, and 1628 were reserved for them. These rooms were for Sarath Fonseka, his wife Anoma Fonseka, his two daughters Apsara Tillakaratne and Aparna Fonseka, his son in law Danuna Tillakaratne, a major general and his wife, one Brigadier, two Lt Colonels, one Captain and one Lieutenant. This was the time the decisive battle for peace was fought in Mulaitivu. An army commander has no bigger joy than participate in the final battle. But not in the case of Fonseka. What was so important for Fonseka that he even neglected the final victorious battle and ran away from Sri Lanka?

During this long trip Fonseka and Danuna who owns a weapons buying and selling company, visited two main corporations specialised in selling weapons to third world countries. They are NORINCO and Poly Technologies. Sri Lanka army, navy, air force and the Ministry of Defence have been purchasing weapons from both these companies for a long time. For instance in April 2007 a classified purchased of US$37 million was made from these companies. However, in May 2009 things were going to get bigger!

This time the value of the purchase order was a staggering US$ 200 million which is higher than the total annual defence capital budget!This act also contravenes the gazette notification on 30 July 2007 prohibiting the purchase of many defence items by entities other than Ministry of Defence owned Lanka Logistics and Technologies (Pvt) Ltd. By the time the deal was done, the war has ended in Sri Lanka without Fonseka. Purchases made by Fonseka assumed the war to continue and now they were not required.

Defence Secretary had no choice than to ask Fonseka to cancel the order. It doesn’t feel right when you have benefited from the hospitality of a supplier with the promise of giving business and subsequently cancelling the order. What’s more embarrassing was that the Defence Secretary asked Fonseka to declare the cancellation himself. Reluctantly Fonseka cancelled the order in July 2009. It is the first time in the world an Army Commander cancelling military purchases. In other countries and in Sri Lanka before Fonseka assuming high office, the Army Commander and the Chief of Defence don’t get involved in purchasing. Purchasing includes cancelling purchase orders.

Now Fonseka is trying to release hardcore LTTE terrorists are restart the war so that more and more weapons will be needed. When it comes to purchasing weapons he and his family will benefit immensely.

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