Constitutional Council refuses to approve IGP service extension again
Presid ent Ranil Wickramasinghe’s proposal for granting a fourth extension of service to Police Inspector General Chandana Wickramaratne has been rejected by the Constitutional Council for the second time. The Council deliberated on the proposal on 17 November and, once again, decided to reject it. Addressing the Parliament earlier this month, Opposition MP Wimal Weerawansa noted that the current IGP does not hold a legitimate status as the Inspector General of Police and is in fact now a retired police officer. He further said that keeping him as the Inspector General of Police is illegal and a new Inspector General of Police should be appointed immediately. President Ranil Wickremesinghe granted a fourth service extension to Wickramaratne on 3 November setting a record for the highest number of service extensions granted to any police chief in the history of the Sri Lanka Police. The latest service extension granted will end on 23 November. Wickramaratne has been forced to remain in service, due to the inability of relevant parties to find a suitable candidate for the post. For months, rumours have been circulating extensively regarding the intense competition and struggle for the post in question. Accord ing to sources from Police Headquarters, Senior DIG Administration Nilantha Jayawardena and Senior DIG Western Province Deshabandu Tennekoon remain the top contenders for the coveted position. However, allegations of dereliction of duty over the East Sunday attack have been levelled against the duo while various parties including the Catholic Church of Sri Lanka have urged the President to refrain from appointing either of them to the position. Jayawardena and Tennekoon are among the three senior- most police officers in the Sri Lanka Police along with Senior DIG Lalith Pathinayake.