Five Foreign Trips By Rajapaksa Brothers Cost Sri Lanka Rs 40 Mn
Five official foreign visits by Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Mahinda Rajapaksa as the President and Prime Minister, respectively, in 2021 alone cost the state more than Rs 40 million, according to details provided by the Presidential Secretariat and the Prime Minister’s Office on a directive issued by the Commission of Right to Information of Sri Lanka. Requests to the Presidential Secretariat and the Prime Minister’s Office on January 1, 2022, under the Right to Information Act for the relevant details were initially rejected. However, the Commission directed the offices to furnish the requested details to a journalist. According to the details, over Rs 36 million out of Rs 44 million was spent by Mahinda Rajapaksa on two visits while Gotabaya Rajapaksa spent Rs 7 million on three official visits to New York, Glasgow and the UAE, as reported by Daily Mirror. Mahinda visited Bangladesh to attend the birth centenary celebrations of its founder Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. He also visited Italy to attend the G20 Conference. Some of his family members too attended the conference in Italy. A media website had shared a picture of the former Prime Minister and his delegates enjoying a meal at a hotel in Italy, triggering strong criticism against the government then.