20 September, 2018

Blog

Response To Article In Colombo Telegraph

By Sanjana Hattotuwa –

Sanjana Hattotuwa

Sanjana Hattotuwa

*This article appeared in Groundviews on June 03,  2014.

An article published in the Colombo Telegraph (see PDF here, the site itself continues to be illegally blocked in Sri Lanka by all ISPs) makes several allegations against me. This hasn’t been the first article on that site which has targeted me personally and Groundviews as a platform. It is however the most serious in a series I expect to continue into the future. While I do not intend to engage on Colombo Telegraph on its site – the comments section is a cesspool of bile by those hiding behind veils of anonymity – I would like to flag just two points around the article.

I find it curious that the article refers to the Media Unit coordinator, who isn’t named, as a male. The last time CPA’s Media Unit had a male coordinator was before 2004. Since 2004, the institution has had two female coordinators – one from 2004 to 2012, and the other from 2012 to date.

In 2009, a series of email exchanges with the then coordinator of the Media Unit, CPA’s Executive Director and the Editor of Colombo Telegraph, an erstwhile employee of CPA, also clearly alluded to allegations along the same lines as that which is now in public. Clearly then, given that these receipts and associated farrago of allegations made in the article seem to have resided with the Editor of Colombo Telegraph for over ten years, and have also in the past been alluded to in emails but never substantiated, it is curious as to why they only now appear in the public domain.

Let me also say this.

The article published today against me is yet another example why Colombo Telegraph‘s on-going and illegal block by all ISPs in Sri Lanka is so ill-advised. In blocking the site, the Government of Sri Lanka gives it an air of authority that ill fits the quality of discourse featured on it. And yet, if we cannot countenance the worst that is written of us, without any substantiation and for the most parochial of reasons on the principle that it has as much a right to be published as that which praises us, we aren’t really champions of media freedom. For this reason alone, I remain as committed to the unblocking ofColombo Telegraph as I am truly appalled by the content published and penned by its Editor.

*This article appeared in Groundviews on June 03,  2014.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 6
    1

    It would be pertinent if Mr Hattotuwa explicitly stated that he did not host any such function on CPA or project sponsor account.

    Or if he did, what sort of occasion it was. Rs 20,000 to host a visiting team of, for example, foreign experts, dignitaries or sponsors, in the business, diplomatic or state sector is not unusual; but the context must now be made transparent.

    • 2
      0

      Sanjana Hattotuwa –

      “An article published in the Colombo Telegraph (see PDF here, the site itself continues to be illegally blocked in Sri Lanka by all ISPs) makes several allegations against me.”

      Print the facts on a poster and Post it on walls.

      Distribute on buses, trains etc. Join the JVP, Democratic party etr.

      Give as free wrapping paper for fish and other foods.

      Ask for money as well to continue the revolution…

      Down with the family dictatorship of the Czar.

      Long Live the peoples need for the truth…

      Call a Spade, a Spade.

      Call a dictator, a dictator.

      call a Para, a Para.

      Call a Naga, a Naga,

      Call a para-Naga, a para-Naga etc.

      All in the Land of Native Veddah…

      Paras, behave or leave to south India, the Land of the Nagas.

  • 1
    4

    Thank you for your reply & clarification.

    • 0
      0

      Clarification inadequate, as it does not address all points raised.

  • 5
    7

    the comments section is a cesspool of bile by those hiding behind veils of anonymity.

    Native Veddah and a few other miscreants of his ilk should take note.

    • 4
      0

      Kettle calling the pot black?

    • 2
      2

      Over then years the comments section has decended from constructive and informative to abusive and irrelavent. Many of the older commentators now simply refrain due to highly emotive rebuttuls and so forth. Some even resort to extensive essay type comments.

    • 1
      0

      Vibhushana,

      Did you take note yourself?

    • 0
      0

      If we don’t hide behind ‘Veils of Anonymity’ Gota’s White Vans will come and pick us up and we will disappear forever!

    • 0
      0

      Vibushana – he has exempted you by name?

  • 3
    1

    “the comments section is a cesspool of bile by those hiding behind veils of anonymity”

    Very typical of our Sri Lankan mentality. Reason why we will always be at the very bottom of the THIRD WORLD list.

    • 2
      2

      If you check Sinhalese comments in Local Sinhalese websites, you may feel SL is already in 4th world country. What ever the quality you see or how you judge comments in CT, those are far above average Sinhalese websites, but still may be qualified to represent the 3rd world. I can’t read Tamil only websites to make a comment.

      • 0
        0

        ego is a wonderful thing – does this make u feel better ?

  • 1
    0

    Sanjana
    I have no idea what the issue is between CT and you/Groundviews, but if the incident in question relates to legitimate expenditure associated with your employment (entertainment or ‘business development’), then there is nothing wrong in my opinion with that. While Rs 20,000 is miniscule in today’s Lanka, it’s not the amount that matters, but the principle.

    That is why, despite your stated position (“While I do not intend to engage on Colombo Telegraph on its site”) you should defend your integrity and provide a robust response in the comments section of the relative CT article.

  • 4
    1

    vibhushana

    “the comments section is a cesspool of bile by those hiding behind veils of anonymity. Native Veddah and a few other miscreants of his ilk should take note.”

    Actually I came to help you get out of it but unfortunately you pulled me down the pit.

  • 3
    0

    vibushana
    Your contribution to the cesspool of bile not any less.

  • 0
    0

    The war of the punakku sites continues! FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT :D

  • 0
    0

    Margaritas with Curry Pork…Black Curry Pork in particular !! What a waste.

    I would have had that with yellow rice and a glass of Sav Blanc .

    Give me Chilli crab wok fried with ginger and lots of spring onions with a glass of Aussie Chardy..Why put Pizza topping on our beautifully sweet mud crabs?.

    And nice Pinot Noir in between to cleanse the palate would have been nice.

    But no way I would have forked out LKR 850 , (even if it is converted NGO currency) for a 100 ML bottle of tap water because it comes from Dayan’s favourite turf,

    Our inhabitants know Hotta and his lot want them to have the best.

    They are leading by example which is heartening for a great majority of the population including our poor rural Muslim , Tamil and even some Burghur brethren,who will be happy to have LKR 850 to buy a kilo of Thora Malu as a special treat..

    Is there any bile here?.

    But all our inhabitants , the great majority of them want is to allow them to live in peace and harmony in the current developing Economy of this long suffering country..

    What upset them is when these arty farty try hard Hypsters do fine dining and winning after their Buddhist Bashing and inviting their foreign mates to f..k us up.

    • 2
      0

      “What upset them is when these arty farty try hard Hypsters do fine dining and winning after their Buddhist Bashing and inviting their foreign mates to f..k us up.”

      At the moment we are getting screwed by the Rajapaksa clan and the thugs in saffron robes. We have nothing now. I would rather the foeigners f..k us up. They may leave us something when they piss off.

      • 0
        0

        BBS Rep.
        [Edited out] We are sorry, the comment language is English – CT

  • 1
    0

    NGO verses NGO.

    There will be casualties!

    • 0
      0

      Wonder who funds which. Any idea ?

  • 4
    1

    In Srilanka there is no moral among the leaders. So are the corporations and NGOs of the country.Only religious and ethnic bigots rule the country. What else can you expect from the local NGOs.

    • 0
      1

      ragavan

      Monk Mahanama said in the 6th Century it is going to be Dhamma Deepaya, Faith Island!

  • 2
    1

    Dear Sanjana Hattotuwa
    I take offense to your statement that, “In blocking the site, the Government of Sri Lanka gives it an air of authority that ill fits the quality of discourse featured on it.”
    I believe the Colombo Telegraph is a leading web portal, right there on top providing a forum for divers views – the quality of discourse goes to the heart of the matter and is second to none! I would attribute CT’s rapid growth to the CT team and its writers whom I regret you have insulted.
    Despite the issue you have with CT, I have a lot of admiration for you and Uvindu and wish the matter can be sorted out amicably.

    • 2
      0

      Wow! Agree.

      Never thought I would find common ground with Usha S Sri-Skanda-Rajah.

      Funny how she never proves the same amicable approach to resolving race related matters within a united Sri Lanka.

      Cheers!

  • 0
    0

    Colombo Telegraph And Groundviews Lock Horns Over Sanjana Hattotuwa’s “Restaurant Bills”
    This is how another website reported the ongoing fist-fight between the two foolhardy boy editors.
    My advice is simple: be careful of your locked horns; if broken or seriously damaged you two won’t be able to think critically and independently!

    • 2
      0

      “This is how another website reported the ongoing fist-fight between the two foolhardy boy editors”

      And both the b…s are equally saucy; Dont know who to choose.

  • 0
    0

    Sanjana TALKS nice but his actions have been biased to MR regime from that day on.
    Annonymous CT commentators fight further against the brutal acts of MR regime. If MR regime has bought Sanjana H too, so, that alone shows the levels of MR abuses.
    I have no doubt, we who fights against injustice (human rights) would be suppressed even if any kind of abusers would come forward and make every efforts to harm us.

  • 0
    0

    Sorry Sanjana we can’t take you seriously anymore , as a journalist you have lost credibility .!

  • 0
    0

    As a concerned citizen I strongly believe that Sanjana should reply to CT and clear his name and demonstrate his integrity.
    It’s appalling to hear that staff attached to INGOs/NGOs/NNGOs (International Non Governmental Organizations, Non Governmental Organizations, National Nongovernmental Organisations) working in the development sector could behave in such manner undermining the very work of NGOs. It can be especially harmful and have an effect on reputation, funding and donations. NGOs should show better operational efficiency and accountability to the government especially when they finger point the government. We all know that the most effective way to deal with corruption is to expose it and that’s what CT has done.
    It’s just few days ago that Transparency International launched the governance report which highlighted their findings on corruption in the State sector in several fields.
    Though we have focused much on public sector corruption in the last two decades, we have not even adequately initiated public debate to bring this emerging yet highly vulnerable sector within the purview of anti-corruption law. Hence, INGOs/NGOs/NNGOS must put their house in order by addressing accountability, transparency and internal governance issues before anything.
    Non-transparent working culture, weak internal control system, nepotism and family hegemony are some of the traits that best characterize the composition of most NGOs especially national NGOs like Sarvodaya and Sevalanka. Although the non-profit sector mobilizes a significant proportion of aid most NGOs yet don’t have internal anti-corruption policy and mechanism to manage corruption.
    No one dares question their integrity, transparency and poor governance, not even the government that has authority to check, regulate and monitor their activities. Very often government officials and the very top are
    Hence, it’s high time INGOs/NGOs performance; accountability and transparency are monitored and scrutinized in order to regulate the non-profit sector due to colossal resources channeled into this sector since 1980s from international donors and charities.
    Therefore, immediate steps must be taken to provide a clear space for NGOs to freely pursue their mandate. Second, it ought to clearly outline rights, responsibilities, and standards of accountability and transparency to comply with. And third, it should establish robust checks and balances in which the authorities can use legal powers to prevent and penalize unlawful activities. This could be done by an independent body supported by all stakeholders. Only when these bold challenging measures are met to reform its legal regime, then only our non-profit sector will move toward high degree of accountability and transparency.
    Donor community that doles out financial support must also take responsibility in the ills that NGOs have been involved in. They hardly bother to look into internal governance issue, membership size and family hegemony while providing assistance to the NGOs/NNGOs. Change in donor policy and approach will definitely set a milestone in making the non-profit sector accountable and transparent.

  • 3
    0

    While the facts of this whole sorry mess obviously speak for themselves and the appropriate responses that are required, I would like to support what several other commentators have had to say: Don’t be party to the ongoing efforts of our home-bred imperialists to divide, rule and devastate this country. They have been very successful up to now, and hardly need further assistance in their efforts!

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 300 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically shut off on articles after 10 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.