UK reiterates support for CIABOC, FCID

In the wake of Prez bombshell

‘Tackling corruption priority for UK’

by Shamindra Ferdinando

In the wake of President Maithripala Sirisena castigating the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery and Corruption (CIABOC) and the Financial Crimes Investigation Division (FCID), the British government has reiterated its continued support for the two organizations.

The government established the FCID following presidential polls in January 2015.

President Maithripala Sirisena on Oct 12 accused CIABOC, FCID as well as the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of pursuing political agenda at the expense of truth and justice.

Explaining the ongoing British efforts to streamline Sri Lankan anti-corruption efforts, a British High Commission Spokesperson emphasized that tackling corruption remained a priority for the UK. The BHC Spokesperson was responding to issues raised by The Island.

Q: Can you please explain status of UK-GoSL cooperation in the wake of Dilrukshi Dias Wickmarasinghe, DG, CIABOC quitting over President Sirisena’s criticism of her conduct?

A: The UK has welcomed President Sirisena’s commitment to tackling corruption in Sri Lanka and internationally, including through his participation in the London Anti-Corruption Summit in May 2016.  Along with others, the UK has responded to his call for international assistance in this area.  Part of the £6.6 Mn support for Sri Lanka, as promised at CHOGM 2015,  by the UK government has been allocated to supporting anti-corruption initiatives.  Recently, this has included tangible support to FCID (Financial Crimes Investigation Division) and CIABOC (Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery and Corruption), mostly in the area of skills development.  The "Zero Tolerance" blog by British Deputy HC in Colombo Laura Davies details some of the support provided: 

Q : Will UK continue to support FCID and provide training to selected police personnel in the UK?

A: The UK will continue to work to support and strengthen Sri Lanka’s anti-corruption efforts.

Q: Several months ago, a top level British delegation met former DG, CIABOC to discuss cooperation. During the discussion, UK offered to station personnel in Colombo in support of CIABOC. Is there a likelihood of another meeting between UK officials and CIABOC in the near future?

A: UK officials meet a wide range of contacts as part of our diplomatic work, including those engaged in tackling corruption, which remains a priority for the UK.


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