“He definitely wants to come back. But security is the main issue and intelligence has advised that he delay his return,” said one of the sources, a Sri Lankan government official.
“He may return in two weeks or even before that if arrangements for his safety can be made.”
The second source said high cost of his stay in Thailand was a factor in seeking a return home as soon as possible.
“The bill has now run to several hundred million rupees as it includes the cost for a private jet, a presidential suite and round the clock security,” the source said. “The cost is becoming prohibitive.”
The expenses are largely being borne by some of his supporters, according to another source close to the Rajapaksa family.
All the sources declined to be named discussing the affairs of a former president.
SLPP General Secretary Sagara Kariyawasam said the party had met President Ranil Wickremesinghe seeking arrangements for Rajapaksa’s return.
“We have made the request for his return to be facilitated as soon as possible,” Kariyawasam said.
Wickremesinghe told Reuters last week he was “not aware” of any plans for Rajapaksa’s return. He also said any legal action against Rajapaksa would proceed in accordance with Sri Lanka’s laws.
Anti-corruption body Transparency International says Sri Lanka has already approached the country’s top court seeking “action against persons responsible for the current economic crisis”, including two of Rajapaksa’s brothers who were prime minister and finance minister under him.
As Sri Lanka tries to deal with one of its worst economic crises, a team from the International Monetary Fund will arrive on Wednesday for talks on a possible US$3 billion bailout, which will include a debt restructuring framework.