by Ranga Jayasuriya
Former Police Spokesperson and SSP Ratnapura, Prishantha Jayakody, has fled the country fearing for his life, after he reportedly pressed action and arrested errant Embilipitiya Pradeshiya Sabha Chairman, M.K. Amila, over an assault on two police officers, sources close to the police officer said.
Amila is the brother of late Southern Provincial Council Minister, M.K. Ranjith alias Chandi Malli, a former confidant of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Chandi Malli was shot dead inside the Colombo High Security Zone by a rival underworld gang in 2003.
Amila, who took over the family mantle from the deceased brother, was arrested in June this year on charges of assaulting two police officers. He was later released on bail.
However, sources close to Jayakody said the SSP came under pressure from the political authorities over the arrest and subsequently received death threats.
Extra security detail was provided for SSP Jayakody after he complained about death threats received by him and his family. Sources said the SSP complained of political victimization, which culminated with death threats after he ordered the police to arrest the errant Pradeshiya Sabha Chairman, who surrendered to police after being on the run for 10 days following the alleged assault on the two police officers.
Jayakody had also complained that he had received death threats after he ordered a raid of an unlicensed karaoke club operated by an individual with strong political connections to the ruling party leaders in Ratnapura. The up market club, which served the newly rich in Ratnapura, was shut down after repeated police raids.
However, SSP Jayakody has alleged he feared for the safety of his family since the club was closed. SSP Jayakody has left the country on 29 June, ostensibly to visit his son who was studying in Australia. He was expected to report to duty on 10 July. Police Department last week announced that Prishantha Jayakody has vacated his post.
Our attempts to contact SSP Jayakody were not successful