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 Post subject: Rs. 1.2 billion Range Rover super deal
 Post Posted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 3:32 am 
Rs. 1.2 billion Range Rover super deal

@ The Nation / 08Oct2006

The government has imported 20 super luxury Range Rover jeeps for the use of VIPs at a cost of nearly Rs. 1.2 billion, The Nation learns.

According to informed sources, the jeeps have been cleared by the Sri Lankan cargo after it arrived on a China Airlines air freighter. It has been reported that Sajin Vaas Gunewardane a coordinating secretary of the President attached to the Presidential Secretariat had arranged for the lease purchase of these luxury jeeps through the ICIC bank in Colombo.

The local agent for the Range Rovers is Frontier Automotives of Colpetty of which the CEO is Sheran Fernando. When The Nation contacted Mr. Fernando for further details he said that he could not reveal the details at this point of time but asked for time to talk to the press.

Meanwhile it is learnt that though it was Frontier Motors who were appointed as the sole agents for Range Rovers and Land Rovers Mr. Fernando has transferred the agency to his personal name, creating a dispute among other shareholders of the company. It is learnt that Frontier Motors, through Sheran Fernando has struck another deal to provide over 500 Land Rover jeeps to the government.

The Armoured Range Rover offers additional security and protection options including Tinted windows, Anti-tamper exhaust and Intercom.
The questions being raised by other players in the automobile industry is whether a government can depend on a single individual when purchasing goods for such vast sums of money.

Sources said that they had no issue with the President getting the maximum security but the concern is on the amount spent and the way the deal had been struck. “There is no problem if it was done through the proper channels,” the source said.

Automobile industry players are also raising questions as to whether the purchase order has been placed directly or through another agent in the Middle East or the Far East. They are of the view that a third party involvement will not bring the best price for Sri Lanka, since the middleman involved can earn an enhanced commission.

According to information available on the internet, on the official website of the Land Rover company, the specifications of its armoured vehicles are as follows:

• All vehicles are fitted with a V8 Petrol engine.
• Available in both left-hand and right-hand drive
• All vehicles are to Vogue specification
• Compliant with B6 ballistic level of protection
• Side blast and under floor grenade protection
• Independant ballistic and blast certification
• Uprated suspension, handling and braking system
• Wheels fitted with run-flat tyre system
• Fuel cut off over-ride

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