18th January 1998

Outside Politics

By Epicurus

Shaking a leg!

Deputy Defence Minister, General Anuruddha Ratwatte, is a man of many parts.

When he is not in the battle front, his chores not only make him busy presiding over conferences in Colombo or helicoptering down for engagements set up by MPs in their electorates.

Between these events, Gen. Ratwatte finds the

time to relax and take things easy, notwithstanding the tight security around him.

Last week, he was at the wedding of his youngest son in Kandy.

As a band played music, the proud father could not resist the temptation to get to the dance floor. He walked in full suit and walking stick in hand.

At first he threw the walking stick to a bodyguard standing nearby. After gyrating to the beat of the music, he pulled out his coat and threw it at the bodyguard. The latter undoubtedly had played cricket at school. He caught not only the coat but also the walking stick.

But Gen. Ratwatte was not given out. He went on dancing. What do you expect from a proud, happy father !!

Ranil to go“all out”

It was a case of mea culpa. Opposition leader,

Ranil Wickremasinghe, was at his best when he spoke at the UNP Parliamentary Group meeting - the first in the new year.

In a hard hitting speech, he admitted he had made some mistakes or the party had delayed its responses on some crucial issues.

But he declared the time has now come for the party to act. He would go “all out” with the party to expose corruption and other misdemeanours of the Govenment.

With that declaration, several hush hush moves are afoot to expose some serious acts of alleged corruption.

This includes some military procurements running into multi billion rupees. Insiders say some of the revelations will not only be shocking but most embarrassing to some PA polticians.

Dead soldier kept back

The bereaved family of a dead soldier were angry at the treatment meted out to the man who was killed in acton in Kilinochchi.

The body was brought to Palaly hospital where there was no cold storage facility.

In view of a Library reopening that was under way on that day, the body had to lie in hospital.

Priority on flights were given to the VIPs.

When the body arrived the undertakers complained it was in a badly decomposed state. What a way to treat those laying down their lives for the country!

Go to Rajpal Abeynayake's Column

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