Honourable Minister of Sports Harin Fernando is taking Sri Lanka one step towards anti-corruption with a new bill to pass laws against corruption, betting and other illegal activities in Sri Lanka sports.
In a media conference held today, 7th November at the Ministry of Sports, Minister Harin Fernando announced that this initiative was the start of better times to come for the nation’s sport.
The particular bill was scheduled to be presented today to the parliament but after an unfortunate turn of events, the bill was not heard in lieu with the parliament’s agenda. While the bill was supposed to be handed in only if the minister himself attended the session today, there had reportedly been a case of miscommunication among the relevant authorities, and eventually, the bill was not read.
The parliament then heard the Minister’s woes and agreed to hold a special parliament session on the 11th of November, with the point of order being solely to discuss this new Sports Bill.
This initiative is crucial to a country like Sri Lanka, and the Ministry of Sports is positive that this bill will serve the athletes, coaches, officials and well-wishers in the many sporting disciplines that fall under their jurisdiction.
If found guilty of committing such crimes, punishments of up to Rs. 100 million as a fine and a sentencing up to 10 years in prison will be implemented on the charged. Aiding and abetting such individuals may also result in up to 2 years of prison time.
A special cash fund is also supported with this act to compensate those who come forward with information of such people or organizations. This is done in order to encourage the general public to get involved in revitalizing the industry.
Although Sri Lanka is the very first nation to endorse and fight for this bill, countries such as Australia, England, South Africa and New Zealand are quite familiar with this way of life.
“If we can somehow get this Bill passed, then it would be a big win for Sri Lanka sport. Nobody here has to take credit for it as long as it is practiced and followed” said the Minister in awe of his team’s effort in making this happen.
He also went on to mention that former President of Sri Lanka Cricket and Parliamentarian Thilanga Sumathipala fully supports this decision to bring forward the law, as it will serve nothing but good and justice for the years to come.
“Sri Lanka can really take pride in this new initiative. We will finally be on the world’s stage as the only Asian country to practice this” said Minister Fernando.