Army Commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya has told former Army Commander General Rohan Daluwatte that he could only issue orders to the Seva Vanitha Unit and the Civil Administration Unit in the Army under Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.
Daluwatte is the Vice Chancellors of the Sir John Kotelawela Defence Academy. The Army Commander is also a member of the administrative board of the defence academy. It is learnt that the above mentioned comment had been made when Jayasuriya met with Daluwatte to discuss some issues related to the army.
Jayasuriya has said that his predecessor General Sarath Fonseka when he was Army Commander has had the powers to issue orders not only to the army but also to the other armed forces and even the police. He has said that he did not even have the powers to appoint a commander for a unit in the army.
The Army Commander has said that Majors General Daya Ratnayake, Mahinda Haturusinghe, Aruna Jayathileka, Chandana Rajaguru, Shavendra Silva, Kamal Gunaratne, Sumedha Perera, Jagath Dias, Prasanna Silva, Chagi Gallage and Lalith Davulagala had direct dealings with the Defence Secretary.
“When I inquire about anything, they tell me that it was done with the Secretary’s approval. I wish that the earth would swallow me at such times. Therefore, now I don’t bother to even question about anything that happens. I just observe what happens,” the Army Commander has lamented.
The Army Seva Vanitha Unit functions under the Army Commander’s wife, Mangalika Jayasuriya and it is casual workers and waiters who work in the administrative unit.