The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) confirmed yesterday that it provided Tharunyata Hetak movement monies close to five million rupees, for “awareness creation regarding capital markets."
Tharunyata Hetak is the youth movement headed by Parliamentarian Namal Rajapaksa, son of President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
Speaking to the Daily Mirror Director General of the SEC Dhammika Perera said that the funds were provided to Tharunyata Hetak due to the "penetration the movement has in the country".
"The funds were provided to cover the costs for the organisation and for it to conduct awareness programmeson capital markets," he said.
Perera said that a proposal in this regard was submitted by TharunyataHetak, to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
"After careful consideration of the proposal we decided to release the funds," he said.
When the Daily Mirror questioned Perera as to if any Politically affiliated youth movement could submit a proposal and raise funds for such 'awareness creation', he said that the Commission would have to go through the merits of the proposal.
"If they go through the proper procedure and the proposal is given approval we will make a decision in that regard," he said.
The SEC usually conducts event of awareness creation regarding capital markets in the country in order to educate citizens and potential investors regarding the workings of the market.
"We recently gave funds to a private business entity to conduct such programmes as well. Because we have a staff of around 80 people it is difficult to do large campaigns and therefore we do these through organisations which have wide penetration within the country," he said
The SEC is the regulator of the Stock Market and was earlier marred by controversy with theresignation of its Chairpersons TilakKarunarathne and Mrs. Indrani Sugathadasa.
Dr. Nalaka Godehewa was thereafter appointed as its Chairman.
Karunarathne while resigning alleged that the stock market was controlled by a mafia but stopped short of naming the individuals behind the mafia before his resignation.
Mrs. Sugathadasa the wife of the Presidents Secretary Lalith Weerathunge also said that her decision to resign was in order to "uphold her principles"(By Hafeel Farisz)