Ex defence secretary claims he gave up US citizenship on April 17:Keheliya says issue has been resolved beyond doubt:Sri Lankan voters deserve to know if SLPP candidate still required to bear arms for America: Mangala:
The question of SLPP candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s citizenship re-emerged last night, after the US Federal Register third quarter report released by the US Government yesterday did not include his name in the list of those who renounced US citizenship.
According to the document titled ‘Quarterly Publication of Individuals, who have Chosen to Expatriate’, the list contains the name of each individual who lost US citizenship with respect to whom the Secretary received information during the quarter ending September 30, 2019.
In a tweet Minister Harin Fernando said, “Presidential Election 2019 now officially a battle between a Sri Lankan Vs an American. SLPP candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s name not in the list of names among those who renounced US Citizenship. #Sajith4President.”
In a separate tweet Minister Fernando said that Rajapaksa will not be able to function as the President if elected to office as a result.
Reflecting on the damning revelation civil society activist Gamini Viyangoda said they always knew that Rajapaksa was not a Sri Lankan citizen but an American citizen.
“During the past he said that he renounced his American citizenship.
He has put the date in an un-American manner in the documentation he provided to prove that he had renounced his US citizenship. In the American system first the month, then the day and finally the year is mentioned. In his certificates he provided the date as day, month and year. That is how I knew that this document was fraudulent,” Viyangoda said.
“We never had an American leader. For the first time Sri Lanka will be under an American national if Gotabaya Rajapaksa is elected,” he claimed.
He urged the people to not to elect an American citizen. However, Spokesperson to SLPP Presidential candidate a Rajapaksa, MP Keheliya Rambukwella said they had answered this question over and over again. “We have renounced his citizenship and the Election commissioner has accepted it primarily. The courts have given an order that this he is a Sri Lankan citizen. We have produced required documents. Otherwise the election commissioner would not have accepted his nomination,” he said.
Rambukwella accused opponents of the presidential run of not speaking about factual political issues. Gotabaya Rajapaksa claimed that he received official confirmation on 3 May from the US Government that he was not considered a US citizen, effective 17 April. The Presidential hopeful also shared a document through media organisations that he said establishes this fact.
The United States Government, in its Federal Register, which is the equivalent of the Gazette published by the Sri Lankan Government, publishes a list of US citizens who have lost or given up their citizenship in the previous quarter every three months. The most recent filing, dated November 12, 2019 and covering the 3rd quarter, does not contain Rajapaksa’s name.
According to Article 91 of the Constitution of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, no person can contest the Presidency or serve as President if they are a citizen of any country other than Sri Lanka.
“Sri Lanka voters deserve to know whether Gotabaya Rajapaksa who is seeking election to the highest office, is required to bear arms for America. He must prove his renunciation beyond any doubt. If not, the courts will have to step in. Don’t forget Geetha Kumarasinghe,” Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera tweeted last night.
Why did Gotha wait till 17th of April 2019 to give up US citizenship?
If he was realy interested to serve Sri Lanka Why did he wait untill April 2019?
US Register of November 12, 2019 and covering the 3rd quarter, does not contain Rajapaksa’s name being removed, Why? Does it prove that US federal department is worse than Sri Lankan Offices?