A wedding held in a five star hotel in the city recently witnessed a group of Ministerial ones chit-chatting in a jolly good mood. The opposition chief in Yahapalanaya One, now the transport boss, the most vocal of all regaled his colleagues with many an amusing anecdote. However, he made it a point to recount in-between certain funny doings by big guns who previously held key positions in the Ministry he is in charge of now.
“It may take one whole night for me to recount how tenders in respect of various projects had been awarded,” he began. “Some tenders had been awarded to their family members… I visited one CTB workshop with 137 technicians on its roll. But they had repaired only two buses in one month… There will be no more CTB to be run, if the Treasury fails to release adequate funds next month to keep it going…” He added after a pause for emphasis: “A person who should take the rap for such a mess was vying for the main chair in the opposition!” The Ministerial one on this occasion thankfully had a nodding attentive audience.
However, the Transport Boss found himself in a highly awkward situation when he related the same story with more spice added at a different event later. The occasion was a meeting of CTB depot heads held at a well-known hall in Narahenpita. The audience had turned restive when the Transport Boss was referring to the corruption rampant in the board in the recent past. Suddenly someone from the audience shouted: “Where were you when all those shady things were happening in the Ministry and the CTB?” And that set the ball rolling! More questions and jeers from the audience. They were all shouting at the Ministerial one as if they were letting off a long-suppressed anger.
When it appeared that the situation was getting out of control, Police whisked off the Ministerial one through a rear exit!