Ranil was not serious on National Security - Former Army Commander | Daily News

Ranil was not serious on National Security - Former Army Commander

DMI information of Zahran’s IS ideologies ignored then

Former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe had not considered National Security as a serious matter and he left the National Security Council (NSC) meetings before they ended, former Army Commander Lt. Gen.Mahesh Senanayake stated.

Testifying before the Presidential Commission of Inquiry probing Easter Sunday carnage on Wednesday (07) via Skype technology, he stated that the former Prime Minister stayed only about five to ten minutes at the NSC meetings.

Meanwhile , the former prime minister had earlier told before the Commission that he did not take national security or the Security Council seriously.

He further pointed out that a large amount of money had been received by State Minister M.L.A.M Hizbullah from Middle East countries, including Saudi Arabia, and that the money had not been audited.

Military intelligence had revealed that M.L.A.M.Hizbullah had received money from the Hira Foundation in Saudi Arabia and other countries in the Middle East, the former Army Commander said.

“The Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI) had discussed regarding the National Thowheed Jamaath and its leader Zaharan Hasheem at National Security Meetings in 2018. Nobody took those warnings seriously. DMI had informed the NSC about the Zaharan Hasheem’s activities at the time of the Digana riot in 2018. Although the DMI had informed the relevant officials about the need of arresting Zaharan after the Digana incident, none considered about the information at that time,” Senanayake stated.

He further stated DMI had informed that Zaharan was bearing Islamic State (IS) Ideology and zaharan was motivating muslim youth to follow the IS ideolog, at the NSC meetings. Senanayake highlighted that former President Maithripala Sirisena was aware of Zaharan’s IS ideology since 2018.

The Commissioners inquired as to why the security heads had failed to take necessary measures to arrest Zaharan Hasheem and his followers. Replying to that, Senanayake stated that there was a competition between the investigations services in the country and they were not collaborate with DMI when conducting investigations regarding these matters.

Responding to a question raised by the Commissioners, Senanayake stated that investigations units attached to the Police, the Criminal Investigation Department and Terrorist Investigation Division had failed to work together with the DMI when conducting investigations. As an example, when a stock of explosives was found in Wanathawilluwa in 2019, the CID could have obtained the assistance from the DMI to conduct inquiries since the DMI had a large network regarding this incident.