Amidst a rare twist of events, Mandana Ismail Abeywickrema the once sacked Associate Editor of the Leader Publications is back, this time as the Editor of the Sunday Leader, inside sources of the newspaper revealed.
The newspaper popularly known for its vociferous outbursts in reporting the previous Rajapaksa governments misdeeds, was purchased by businessman Asanga Seneviratne, a close ally of the first family who ended up sacking prominent Editor Frederica Jansz and also forced her successor Sakunthala Perera in resigning too.
Seneviratne who controls approximately 78% shares of the newspaper barred the staff from exposing the former Rajapaksa family and their political stooges, whilst having his college mate Nalin Jayatilleke read through every article prior to giving his nod for approval and publishing.
This stance sent the sales and popularity of this once sought after Sunday Newspaper plummeting in a downward spiral, where even the print run of the once famous Sunday Leader, ended up being so minimal it could barely cover its costs.
Staff of the Leader Publications continually now complain that they are coaxed into finding other jobs as even their salaries are not paid on time.”This is a form of contructive termination” cried a current employee on the look out for another job.
However a close friend of Ismail Abeywickrema sent in this email to Colombo Telegraph expressing her displeasure in the journalist’s acceptance of this new role;
Mandana Ismail goes back to her own vomit
Mandana Isamil Abeywickrema has been appointed as the Editor of the Sunday Leader by Asanga Seneviratne who bought the newspaper from Lal Wickrematunge at Mahinda Rajapaksa’s behest. The paper has been run down to the ground at the instructions of Mahinda by Asanga but the pay back for doing that has not been invested by him in the newspaper.
Staff payments have been delayed for months and Asanga has shuffled staff in a last ditch attempt to recover lost money which he has invested in his other projects like the Hotels in passikudah.
Mandana left the country when her house was broken into and the insinuation was that the would be assassins came looking for the Krrish files. When her husband returned from CR and FC late at night he found the intruders and informed the Police who then shot one of the robbers. The case is yet in courts. Mandana left the country immediately and Asanga sacked her from the Sunday Leader.
It is reported that Mandana was approached by Asanga to come back to the paper but she had refused and filed action against Asanga for compensation. The case is in court.
For Mandana to go back to Asanga is like going back to her own vomit. It is the same Asanga who sacked Fredrika and Shakunthala for writing against Mahinda, Gota, Sajin Vass and the lot who were thrown out.
What new can you expect from this lot?