Lokuwithana purchases Namal’s ‘Gower Building’ for Rs. 400 Million
A luxury building located on Gower Street, Colombo 5 believed to be owned by MP Namal Rajapaksa has now been sold to prominent local businessman Nandana Jayadeva Lokuwithana. While much controversy surrounded on the ownership of the building, media reports claimed it belonged to MP Namal Rajapaksa. Interestingly the new owner of the building, Lokuwithana featured in the leaked ‘Panama Papers’ that revealed financial information of the worlds rich including frauds and tax evasion.
The agreements relating to the building mentions popular businessman Nimal Perera as the owner while the deeds mention it was purchased for Rs. 400 Million on July 2, 2017. This deed has been certified by a Notary by the name of W.C.S Wijewardena.
House owned by Wickramasinghe’s
According to documents the initial owner of the building was named as Ishanka Wickramasinghe, a resident of No. 17/3, the 5th lane. The land along with the house had then been sold to Nimal Perera for Rs. 175 Million on August 10, 2011, according to the deed.
Despite the land amounting to 37.22 perches had been purchased under the name of Perera however media had reported MP Namal Rajapaksa as the true owner while also claiming that money earned through illicit means were used to make the purchase. A Police investigation was also conducted in this regard.
The fact that the business office of the MP being located in this building and that no resurveying was done of the land after purchase only goes on to prove this premise.
However, the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) is yet to be informed of the transfer of ownership with CMC documents notes its owner as Nimal Perera
Minister and Anti-Corruption activist involved
Meanwhile, insider sources have also revealed that a prominent minister of the government and a popular Anti-Corruption activist had acted as ‘brokers’ for the recent sale.
While the Police Financial Crimes Investigation Division (FCID) has filed a case regarding the laundering of Rs. 30 Million through the Gowers Corporate Services (Pvt) Ltd. believed to have been earned by Namal Rajapaksa illicitly, however, the Police have expressed their concerns about any possible influence by the said Minister to the case.
Lakshman Namal Rajapaksa, Indika Prabath Karunajeewa, Chandrasekara Pavithrika Sujani Bogollagama, Nithya Senani Samaranayake, Batapola Arachchige Onella Iresha Silva and Gowers Corporate Services (Pvt) Ltd. have been named as respondents to the case.