Pretentious sleep is the surest form of slumber.
It has been reported to Colombo Telegraph that following the article exposing the illegal appointment of the un-qualified Director of Sri Jayewardenepura General Hospital (SJGH) Dr. Susitha Senaratne, Janaka Sugathadasa, Secretary Ministry of Health and Dr. Jayasundera Bandara, Director General of Health Services (DGHS) have gone into voluntary administrative slumber.
Dr. Susitha Senaratne, close personal associate of Rajitha Senaratne, Minister of Health, with the consistent and illegal support of Dr. Athula Kahandaliyanage, Chairman SJGH has been occupying the office of the Director SJGH without as much a letter of appointment for over two and a half years. Kahandaliyanage illegally suppressed all official communication and memoranda to the Board pertaining to this illegal and un-administrative quasi appointment of a quasi Director to SJGH since March 2015 buying in to the con artistry of Susitha Senaratne in portraying himself as a right hand man of President, Prime Minister and the Minister of Health.
This stark violation of the rule of law by appointing a mere medical officer without any post graduate or professional qualifications as the Director of a Post Graduate Training Institute and a Tertiary Care Hospital was twice queried by the Committee on Public Enterprise (COPE) in the context of violating the Medical Services Minutes as gazette by government gazettes of 1493/3 of 16.04.2007, 1630/10 of 30.11.2009, 1883/17 of 11.10.2014 ,1996/46 of 09.12.2016, the Act of Parliament of 1983/54, the common law of the country and common decency. Law or decency appear immaterial to the key players of this irregularity, namely, Athula Kahandaliyanage, Susitha Senaratne ,Janaka Sugathadasa and Jayasundera Bandara. Kahandaliyanage who twice defended this non-existent appointment, illegal at best, at the 2016 and 2017 COPE meetings continues to uphold the illegal status-quo to which Janaka Sugathadasa and Jayasundara Bandara are willingly complicit.
1. Susitha Senaratne stated to the Colombo Telegraph that he has monthly earnings amounting to Rs 300 000 as Director SJGH. No audit has been carried out to look in to such amounts of remuneration not stipulated in government or SJGH Board salary scales.
2. Susitha Senaratne stated to the Colombo Telegraph that he functioned as the Acting Deputy Director Accident Service of National Hospital of Sri Lanka from 2008-2013. Janaka Sugathdasa avoided confirming this claim to CT palming off the question to the DGHS who in turn avoided answering as well. CT learns that this was a gross lie stated by Senaratne. No disciplinary inquiry has been initiated in to this false statement made by an officer of the government holding a responsible post.
3. Susitha Senaratne stated to the Colombo Telegraph that qualifications are not essential to be the Director General of Health Services in Sri Lanka, the highest post in the Department of Health. No disciplinary inquiry has been initiated in to the issue of false statement undermining the authority and the position of the DGHS of Sri Lanka. Further it is deplorable to note that the DGHS Dr. Jayasundara Bandara, ex-officio member of the SJGH Board who maintains meek silence on the matter has not even had the minimally required strength of character to present himself at the Board Meeting to challenge this statement, at least verbally. Needless to add, Janaka Sugathdasa, who has practically patented his unique brand of “Sugthadasa Slumber” remains well and truly asleep, administratively.
4. Susitha Senarante holds a private channeling General Practice at Malambe. This is a practice explicitly forbidden for those holding senior administrative positions in General Hospitals. When inquired by CT, Senaratne stated that such a rule does not apply to himself and may be applicable to those holding positions such as DGHS. When contacted by CT for confirmation, Sugathadasa feigned the signature Sugathadasa Slumber and the DGHS Jayasundera Bandara also maintained his silence. Needless to add, no disciplinary inquiry has been initiated regarding this matter either.
5. Athula Kahandaliyanage, by his own admission has sanctioned 100 days of overseas leave for Senaratne in violation with the overseas leave application process stipulated by the Ministry of Health and the Establishment Code since March 2015 to date. No disciplinary inquiry has been initiated against Kahandaliyanage or Senaratne.
6. Susitha Senaratne stated to Colombo Telegraph that Lanka Hospitals for which he serves as an “Administrative Consultant” while possessing no required educational or professional qualifications, pays him a salary amounting to Rs 300 000. No audit had been initiated to look in to this matter as to how he can receive such monies being an employee of the Ministry of Health while holding an irregular appointment at one Public Enterprise (SJGH) and receiving yet another salary at another Public Enterprise (Lanka Hospitals).
7. Susitha Senaratne further confirmed to Colombo Telegraph that Lanka Hospitals made a payment for his MBA from University Adelaide amounting to Rs 780 000. No government audit or inquiry had been initiated in to how public money has been spent on first educating the Administrative Consultant of Lanka Hospitals. Dr.Sarath Paranavithane, Chairman Lanka Hospitals has maintained his silence to CT inquiry. His slumber also appears to be an extension of the signature Sugathadasa Slumber.
8. No disciplinary inquiry has been initiated to look in to the misuse of public property by Senaratne in transporting his dog in patient ambulance or for causing serious damage to the hospital property by driving his BMW 5X in to the wall of the Nurses Training School of SJGH where Senaratne was found in unconscious stupor. The cost of the repair of the structures has been borne by SJGH monies.
9. While Kahandaliyanage, Sugathdasa and Jayasundera Bandara through their passive and deceitful conduct continue to insult the administrative service and the law of the land, a fifth player has joined the SJGH Board of Directors to replace Anula Harasgama, former representative of the Ministry of Finance. The latest addition to the SJGH Board is none other than R. Semasinghe, additional secretary of the Ministry of Finance who was arrested with connection to the infamous “Sil Redi” fiasco of Lalith Weeratunga and Anusha Palpita fame. Semasinghe briefly went missing following the expose’ of the “Sil Redi” fraud and was later remanded for his connection with the said large scale corruption. Since joining the SJGH Board he remains a vocal proponent of attempts at ‘backdated-regularization ‘ of the irregular and illegal appointment of Senaratne
10. Further, it is reported to Colombo Telegraph that on 30th October 2017, Kahandaliyanage and Senaratne along with a small number of loyal handpicked specialists met with Minister of Health in a desperate attempt to protect the illegal appointment of Senaratne.
Meanwhile several whistle blowers are in the process compiling public interest litigation against the Sleeping Secretary Sugathadasa of the Ministry of Health and the Chairman & Board of Directors of SJGH, all passive and complacently complicit to endangering the lives and safety of the public by allowing an unqualified individual to run a tertiary care hospital and a post graduate training center. (By Chinthika De Silva)