The Postal Department crisis is deepening amid the Post Master General (PMG) categorically denying allegations of corruption made against him by employees and while postal service trade unions continue their strike urging the government to remove him his post.
The trade unions said they would meet Postal Services Minister Jeevan Kumaratunga today to explore how best to resolve the crisis and will call off their strike action if they receive a solution to the to this crisis.
They said the recent hunger strike by postal workers had caused a backlog of more than 11 lakhs of letters, two lakhs of registered letters and a large numbers of parcels and letters from the outstations to Colombo.
Post Master General M.K.B. Dissanayake said he was innocent and was not responsible for any wrong-doing.
“. I have done nothing wrong and I am willing to prove my innocence,” Mr. Dissanayake said and added that he had not received any direct complaints about incidents of corruption and that the allegations if any were false.
In May this year a committee comprising a retired high court judge, former sports ministry secretary and a former postal ministry secretary was set up with Cabinet approval to investigate the allegations of corruption.
According to the committee report published on October 6 Mr. Dissanayake has been found guilty in 21 of the 26 allegations made against him.
“It is not a committee or anyone else but only the Cabinet can remove me from my position if it wishes to do so,” Mr. Dissanayake said.
Postal trade unions however continue to urge the government to remove Mr. Dissanayake from the post of PMG stating that he had abused department funds and other resources.
“If he denies these charges then we condemn him for doing so. We are not asking for our salaries to be increased or to safeguard our rights. We just want him to be removed with immediately immediate effect,” the Postal Trade Union Collective Spokesman Chinthaka Bandara said today. (By Olindhi Jayasundere)