From SL Mirror
Opposition MP Dinesh Gunawardena was lying when he said that he opposed an increase in the allowances for MPs, a spokesman for the speaker’s office told Sri Lanka Mirror.
On behalf of the joint opposition, Gunawardena discussed with the speaker about raising MPs’ allowance, said the spokesman.
The parliamentary committee had not submitted the proposal all of a sudden, but it had been discussed extensively at meetings of party leaders and at parliamentary committees, according to him.
At any of those meetings, Gunawardena did not say anything against raising MPs’ allowances, but it is surprising that he had held a media briefing yesterday (14) and spoken against it, said the spokesman.
He is uttering such lies due to his political bankruptcy, charged the spokesman, and recalled how he had denied congratulating Mahinda Amaraweera on his appointment as the SLFP general secretary, to which he had given his support.
In an interview with BBC Sandeshaya, MP Vasudeva Nanayakkara said Gunawardena had asked the speaker, on behalf of the joint opposition, about deciding to raise MPs’ allowances without first submitting a proposal to the party leaders’ meeting.
More burdens on the people
Nanayakkara said the joint opposition has decided to oppose the increases, of around Rs. 200,000 that will be added to MPs’ salaries.
On a parliamentary committee recommendation, an MP will be given telephone facilities and an additional allowance of around Rs. 150,000 to maintain an office at his electorate and for a house from Colombo.
In addition, an MP will be paid a daily allowance for attending parliamentary sessions, constitutional council and other supervisory committees.
Nanayakkara said they opposed raising MPs’ allowances by placing more tax burdens on the people, and at a time when the government was speaking about a lack of funding.