In his statement, the MP refers to expenditure through ministries headed by the Rajapaksa family and relatives. To check the MP’s claim, FactCheck.lk consulted the 2022 Budget speech, which provides the full expenditure proposals, and the Budget Estimates for 2022, which provides the ministry level allocation of expenditure.
The total expenditure allocations under 6 members of Rajapaksa family are LKR 1,827 billion and amounts to 46.7% of government expenditure of LKR 3,921 billion (see Exhibit 1 and FactCheck.lk’s website for more details).
The 64% figure quoted by the MP is flawed for two reasons. The first and more serious flaw is that it included public debt amortisation (capital repayments of loans), which is not an expenditure item under public accounting standards.
Second, it is based on the numbers in the Appropriation Bill, which had been superseded by the 2022 Budget tabled in parliament about a week prior to the statement.
Therefore, we classify the MP’s statement as FALSE.
Additional note: In the proposed budget, the total allocation recorded with public debt amortisation (LKR 5,452 billion) added, takes the share of allocation recorded under the Rajapaksa family headed ministries to 61.6% of the total allocations with amortisation added (LKR 3,359 billion). This is because public debt amortisation allocation (LKR 1,531 billion), which is not an expenditure item, is recorded within the Ministry of Finance.
*FactCheck.lk’s verdict is based on the most recent information that is publicly accessible. As with every fact check, if new information becomes available, FactCheck.lk will revisit the assessment.
FactCheck is a platform run by Verité Research.
For comments, suggestions and feedback, please visit www.factcheck.lk.