4th July 1999
Did senior Army officials concerned with procurements defy or ignore to include some important clauses when they arranged the deal to buy 3,000 pieces of Body Armour from a British manufacturer. Insiders say that none other than Army Commander, Lt. Gen. Srilal Weerasooriya, had insisted on the inclusion of these clauses after they were recommended by retired Col. Daya Nadarajasingham, now a consultant.It has now been found that the instructions have not been carried out.
Those responsible may face disciplinary action if it is found there had been neglect on their part.
Meanwhile the British manufacturer is to go to Courts next week over the refusal of Army Headquarters to accept the Body Armour shipment.
Both the supplier and the procurer have dropped one issue raised by an inexperienced Brigadier that the supplier be asked to guarantee compensation payments if soldiers are injured (or die) due to defects in the Body Armour. That was his condition for acceptance. A case of a square peg in a round hole.
The General Officer Commanding (GOC) the now down graded Joint Operations Headquarters (JOH) General Rohan de S. Daluwatte, received some good news early this week. He has been recalled to 'Active Service from the Regular (General) Reserve of the Sri Lanka Army.'
That in effect means two significant things (1) He can now don Army uniform in his role as GOC of the JOH. (2) He becomes the senior most serving officer in the security forces for he holds the rank of a four star General.
A Gazette notification (No 225/1 of 1999) issued under the name of R. K. Chandrananda de Silva, Secretary, Ministry of Defence on June 15 has recalled General Daluwatte for active service with effect from June 9, 1999, the day a powerful Joint Operations Headquarters headed by a Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) was down graded.
Army Headquarters is to put on hold a series of top level changes, both in Colombo and operational areas, by at least three more months.
Defence Ministry sources said the move has been necessitated by 'ground requirements' but declined to elaborate. According to the same sources, a policy decision has been made not to grant extensions to those who complete their terms in the rank of Brigadiers.
Tapping tale doing rounds
Intelligence sleuths have made pocket editions of the Jungle Telegraph last week.
The story about the super snooper and allegations by a lady cop about sexual harassment have been photo copied and circulated all round. That is while the snooper himself has been tasked to find out who leaked the story to Alia, who like some selected scribes, has an unsolicited audience for his phone calls.
Two more Mi-24
Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) has just taken delivery of two more Mi-24 helicopter gunships good news for troops in the battlefield. Insiders say they will acquire two more shortly.
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