Asanga, Nalaka being considered for SEC chief post
Powerful businessman Asanga Seneviratne and Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority Nalaka Godahewa are the names mentioned as those strongly tipped to be appointed as the next chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), informed sources said.
While Mr Seneviratne’s likely appointment is being actively discussed in stock market circles in a speculative context, TimesOnline reliably understands that such an appointment has also been discussed at the highest levels. Earlier it was Dr Godahewa who was seen as the most likely candidate. Both were not immediately available for contact.
Under-pressure SEC Chairman Thilak Karunaratne has said he would send in his resignation tomorrow after fighting a losing battle against powerful investors who complained to the President and the Treasury Secretary of over-regulation and probes against alleged market manipulation.
Last year Indrani Sugathadasa stepped down as SEC chairperson for the same reasons. Both officials have tried to bring some sanity to the markets with regulations to curb insider trading and market manipulation but these efforts have been blocked by interested parties. On Wednesday, UNP Parliamentarian and economist Harsha de Silva described to reporters that what is happening is a form of ‘Regulatory Capture’ where the regulator is being controlled by a group of investors.
Brokers said appointing either Mr Seneviratne and Dr Godahewa would be a conflict of interest by virtue of the fact that they are chairmen of listed companies and big-time investors in the market. However legal analysts said apart from conflict of interest there is no legal bar to their appointment to this position. – Ends -