June 20, 2011 5:01:54 pm
Sri Lanka Cricket has debts of more than $15 million after it co-hosted the World Cup earlier this year and is now seeking a government grant to help ease the burden,an official for the national sports body said Monday.
Treasurer Sujeewa Rajapaksa said the debts are mostly due to an outstanding bank loan of $15.5 million,obtained mainly for building new grounds and upgrading existing venues.
He rejected media allegations that the financial problems were the result of corruption.
Sri Lanka,which hosted 12 matches,reached the final of the tournament on April 2,losing to India in Mumbai. Bangladesh was the third host country.
Rajapaksa said that construction work which had been estimated to cost $29 million,in fact cost $40 million. Sri Lanka constructed a new ground near the southern port town of Hambantota and extra expenses were incurred to build access roads,buy electricity generators and pay for security personnel,he said.
Rajapaksa said the body has sought a $1.8 million grant from the government.
Cricket authorities have faced media criticism over alleged corruption in handling World Cup funds,of wasteful spending and non-payment of staff salaries.
Police raided the SLC premises last week but computers with information on finances had been removed.
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