A number of senior editors, associated with major print newspapers have confessed to Colombo Telegraph that they feel unable to run stories on Ambassador Jayantha Dhanapala’s unethical dual capacity as a director of Dialog Axiata PLC, and a leader of the civil society advocacy group, Friday Forum, due to the size of the digital communications and media company’s advertising budget. The 2012 Annual report of Dialog lists an advertising budget of 7.3 billion Sri Lanka rupees.
“This simply shows that what’s called good governance, really is very far from simple ethical practice,” said a senior Sri Lankan political analyst when contacted for comment. “Whether it is laptops, car loans or advertising, the press is kept.”
However, at least two editors have said that they intend to take this issue up in the coming days, due to the serious conflict of interest involved.
A few days ago Professor Kumar David said; “asking Dhanapala to resign from Friday Forum is ‘rubbish’. It would be unprincipled to resign from Friday Forum; Jayantha Dhanapala must take a stand and resign from Dialog. These worthies love money, so it is unimaginable for them to part from big money! I call up Dhanapala to resign from Dialog and condemn its illegal and unethical behaviour. Then he will win back his self-respect.”
History of Colombo Telegraph blocking
First -December 26, 2011 – We are blocked but we will not be stopped
Second – May 8, 2012 – Colombo Telegraph Blocked Again
Fourth – August 23, 2013 – Colombo Telegraph Blocked, How To Reach Us Now: Sri Lanka Telecom And Mobitel Joins The DPI Club!