As the country’s 34th Inspector General of Police (IGP) Pujith Jayasundara completes his second month in office, the Sri Lanka Police, the primary national law enforcement agency continues to function without an official police spokesman.
Just two weeks after taking over office, Jayasundara issued a gag order on the police media unit, including on police spokesman ASP Ruwan Gunasekara, after he had revealed to the media about the discovery of several arms hauls in the North among certain other sensitive information.
Even though it has been over a month since the IGP suspended the media unit, steps have not been taken to appoint a new spokesman, who has the authority to speak to the media.
When the Colombo Telegraph contacted the Police Media Unit, an officer who took the call said that the unit is allowed to only issue statements and no one has been authorised to speak to the media even if it was necessary to clarify a report.
“The IGP has appointed a committee comprising of ASP Ajith Rohana, ASP Ruwan Gunasekara and ASP Priyantha Jayakody, who oversee the functions of the media unit, but we have not been informed of an official police spokesman, but maybe if you speak to them directly they will speak to you, but otherwise the media is only expected to carry whatever statements we issue from here officially,” the officer said.
In early May, IGP Jayasundara suspended the media unit. No official explanation was given for his decision.