Live telecast of COPE suspended

It is reported that the government has decided to suspend the live broadcast of the COPE Committee. During the previous government COPE meetings and COPE inquiries were broadcast live. However opposition MPs are opposing the government’s decision to suspend live coverage of COPE meetings.

Chief Government Whip Johnston Fernando informed the decision in Parliament today. “We noticed that video footage of the COPE meetings was being used by media channels to attack the former President and Prime Minister. Various officials were also brought in using their powers to attain their political agendas. It is beneficial for us to reveal all the malpractices after 2015. But certain media are editing the footage to promote their political agendas’, he said.

He also claimed it was to protect government officials and former officials.

“We will not give false information to the media. The public rejected such activities with a 2/3rd majority in the past. We will not recommence such actions rejected by the public”, he said.

COPE has the power to summon before them and question any person, call for and examine any paper, book, record or other documents and to have access to stores and property.

The COPE was established in 1979 to ensure the observance of financial discipline in Public Corporations and other Semi Governmental bodies in which the Government has a financial stake. The duty of the Committee is to report to Parliament on accounts examined, budgets and estimates, financial procedures, performance and management of Corporations and other Government Business Undertakings.