It was the evening of 26th, President Maithripala Sirisena appointed, former president, opposition member Mahinda Rajapaksha as the prime minister without getting the necessary parliamentary mandate. In the same night, the round the clock telecast of Sri Lankan National Channel, Rupavahini went offline for more than 5 hours.
Information has been revealed that State media institutions have set a stage for political reprisals. Friday (26) after the UPFA splitting and the situation arose in the coalition government, Rajapaksha groups entered the Rupawahine corporation, Independent Television Network, and Lake House takes the management into their authority. Once the joint government was coming to power in 2015, people who have been deployed in the administration and functioning of these state media institutions have become very difficult due to the current situation in Lanka.
When the former President took oaths as the Prime Minister on last Friday, a group of UNP MPs including the former Minister of Mass Media and Information, Mangala Samaraweera ’s, excessive entry of the Rupavahini Corporation, the Rajapaksha faction were able to find reasons for its political influence. A group of Parliamentarians representing the Rajapaksa team have come up with a tense situation in the Rupavahini Corporation. Eventually, the television coverage was stopped throughout the night, and the next day, it has become a trumpet of the Rajapaksa-Maithri group.
It has been learned that the Independent Television Network authority has taken by Sudharman Radaliyagoda who act as a political puppet since Chandrika Bandaranayake’s rule. On the day the former president took oath-in as a prime minister, a group of Rajapaksha clang threated journalists and the employees have intervened and blocked the attempt of assault of Deputy General Manager Subhash Weerathunga Jayawardena.
It is reported that Lake House also has been influenced by the Rajapaksha faction from editorial staff to ordinary employees. Lake House sources say that the situation has got worse for some journalists. Its inner sources reveal that the activities of the SLBC were also under the control of Rajapaksa proxies.
The media institutions always act as political trumpets and this situation has been taken by all Sri Lankan governments. Political henchman or leaders never wanted to create those institutions into a professional standard. Although trying to get some new look after the joint government came into power, no one could be prevented from turning back from becoming a trumpeter.
Even some who acted as independent journalists turned into job desperation or lost their jobs. Some had to keep low and act accordingly. Power of the politics has always been responsible for the people, and a structural and whole system change has to be imposed for the betterment of the country and its people.