In Sri Lanka today of all the sports with the exception of T20 internationals and 50-over cricket the most popular spectator sport is schools rugby.
A large number of spectators come to watch matches and most of the games are evenly matched and there is a massive spectator interest. Due to this reason the sponsors are also very keen as they get good mileage and the schools union has enough funds to run their tournament without any hindrance.
Since of late, it appears the SLRFU who were even black listed and imposed a fine by the world body IRB is making an attempt to grab the schools tournament. One wonders whether they are aiming at the lucrative sponsorship the school’s association receives.
The SLRFU has got the Minister of Sports Dayasiri Jayasekera involved and it appears that he is dancing to their tune. As Minister of Sports the first thing he should have done was not to be misled by the SLRFU hierarchy but to get an independent view about the situation.
According to the Yahapalanaya theory one wonders as to why he did not hold an inquiry against the SLRFU Committee when they were found guilty of playing a foreigner in the national side with false documents, birth certificates etc. It is a case for the Fraud Bureau. There was enough
documentary evidence to prove that the SLRFU hierarchy has brought discredit to the country by forging documents and misleading the world rugby union.
They were fined 5000/- pounds or more. Why didn’t the Sports Ministry take action? They covered up the fraud and the Minister himself is liable for a charge of aiding and abetting for an offence.
Of course, the top officials of the SLRFU were closely backed by the former regime where it is said that one of them who was involved with various activities and another who regularly visits Kebalitta Kovil to have poojas on behalf of the former leader of the country are now with the present Minister.
Furthermore, SLRFU are employing foreigners with huge salaries whereas the money could have been transferred for development of coaches, referees, players and used in a practical manner.
We hope that Sports Minister does not get involved unnecessarily with these crooked officials.
What he must do is immediately get the Fraud Bureau to inquire into employing non-qualified foreigners and take immediate disciplinary action as we are hoping to raise this question in Parliament in the near future.
By Rugby Fan – aselawijeyasekara 67/5 Dutugemunu Street Kohuwela