SLC files defamation suit against Sri Lankan Sports Minister – LSB

Sri Lanka Cricket has filed a defamation suit against the country’s sports minister, as a row over the administration of cricket in the country deepens.

The SLC is currently suspended by the ICC, at the request of SLC officials, in an attempt to convince the Sri Lankan government that the ICC will not tolerate political interference on the board.

Meanwhile, at home, SLC and the Sports Minister are waging a war on different fronts, with this defamation lawsuit the latest between them. Aside from this legal action, the Sports Minister also vowed to fight the suspension order issued by the Sri Lankan courts last Tuesday, which dismissed the “caretaker committee” appointed by the minister, and reinstated the sacked board officials. yesterday.

“In response to the ongoing and damaging defamatory statements made by Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs Roshan Ranasinghe, Sri Lanka Cricket has taken a decisive step to protect its reputation and integrity,” a board statement said. “Therefore, on November 13, 2023, [SLC officials] They jointly filed a defamation suit in the Colombo District Court, seeking damages amounting to Rs 2.4 billion on behalf of the Sri Lanka Cricket Team.

The statement did not mention the specific statements that the SLC claims were defamatory, but the comments that were singled out likely came on Saturday, during a long press conference held by the Sports Minister, in which he accused the board of corruption and mismanagement, among other things. Other things. The minister has been accusing the council of corruption for about a year, but he often does so in Parliament where his speech is protected from libel suits due to parliamentary privilege.

The SLC also held a press conference on the same day that included personal insults directed at the Sports Minister.

Under the Sri Lanka Sports Act, in place since 1973, the Sports Minister has a range of powers over the SLC as well as other sporting bodies in the country.

SLC is seeking assurances from the top level of the Sri Lankan government that there will be no further political interference, which in turn is likely to lead to the ICC’s suspension being lifted from the Board.

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