8 August, 2022


Farcical Damage Control Attempts: President’s Media Director Blatantly Lies To Media Saying Sirisena Never Confirmed Participation For SL Tourism Awards

In another farcical turn of events, President Maithripala Sirisena’s Media Director Dharmasri Bandara Ekanayake had told several journalists that Sirisena never confirmed his participation for Sri Lanka Tourism Awards ceremony, which the President skipped at the last moment fearing a boycott by tourism industry leaders.


Ekanayake had made a desperate attempt to cover-up Sirisena who chickened out at the eleventh hour to avoid public humiliation. The journalists had questioned Ekanayake on whether there was a connection between the President’s decision to skip the tourism awards ceremony and his subsequent circular banning the use of private hotels for government events.

Multiple sources from the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) confirmed that Sirisena had confirmed his participation and even allowed the SLTDA to announce that the President would attend the event.

Members of the Presidential Security Division (PSD) had been present at the Shangri-la Hotel, from 10 AM on the event day, indicating that Sirisena was expecting to attend the event. When the event was about to start, the President’s Office had informed the SLTDA officials that Sirisena was running late and had instructed them to start the event. After the award ceremony started, Sirisena’s office had informed the SLTDA that he would not attend the event due to an “urgent meeting.”

What discouraged Sirisena was a news that appeared in Colombo Telegraph revealing that tourism industry leaders are planning to boycott Sri Lanka Tourism Awards in protest of Sirisena’s participation. Sources within the President’s Office also confirmed that Sirisena was livid at the tourism industry leaders’ decision to boycott the award ceremony.

In a cheap attempt of retaliation, Sirisena then ordered all government offices to refrain from using luxury hotels for any state event. The circular banning the use of private hotels was Sirisena’s response to tourism industry leaders who threatened to boycott the tourism awards ceremony if Sirisena attended as the Chief Guest.

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Latest comments

  • 30

    This rogue President’s retaliation against tourism industry leaders by banning the use of private hotels for state events, while allowing the illegal occupation of state properties by his fake PM and cabinet clearly shows he has a real feudal attitude towards what a state is. Gamaralaya thinks the state facilities are his grandmother’s BOOTHALAYA. He has to be booted out, he’s now on a total demolition mode.

  • 22

    I don’t understand why this article is published here. Are you trying to convince us that madman Sirisena and his cohorts do lie? Everybody in this country knows that to lie is their modus operandi and any occasional truths gets out only by mistake? What we are going to do about it is the question of the moment.

    • 24

      Janaka from Matara,

      In this county, A Land Like no Other,

      1. Lying by politicians, is the culture

      2, Lying by Media Directors of Politicians, is culture

      3. Lying after getting caught stealing is culture

      4. Lying after getting caught in killings and murder , is culture

      5. Carrying out unconstitutional actions is culture.

      This land has a 2,500 great cultural tradition. 1,500 years ago, Monk Mahanama. lied in the Mahawamsa. This is also part of the culture.

      • 0

        Please do not let our beautiful country down and project naive statements. All the so called other developed countries too lie but with support of memo ritzy western world.

  • 12

    One word…

    I was at the same hotel that night.
    The PSD security and STF were there.
    Then, a motorcade pulled with the usual Presidential vehicles including a Mercedes. Guess who gets out…Gamayas Chief of Staff. He obviously could not send a Minister, because there were none!!

  • 0

    Remember the then Tourism Minister was taken to the cleaners over the untoward goings on.
    Benefit of doubt to MS please.
    This incident is trivial compared to the putsch.

  • 6

    State institutions take a long time to settle hotel bills. Hotels are probably better off without Govt patronage.

  • 0

    He is following Trump’s lead in lying through his teeth, calling it alternative facts!

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