Using the word ‘fuck’ several times SriLankan Airlines CEO Capt. Suren Ratwatte went on to admit “I am not a numbers man nor do I have a financial background or business acumen’ when confronted by several pilots at a meeting held in Colombo yesterday.
The loose tongue wagging CEO Ratwatte, who frequently uses the word ‘fuck’ at meetings went on to say “I am here to make big decisions and ride my bicycle on my off days.”
Captain Ratwatte went on to brief the pilots that the flight sectors operated by SriLankan Airlines to Male and Chennai were super profit making sectors and also a couple of Middle Eastern destinations.
However he went on to complain that all European bound flights were not making profits due to the under cutting of ticket prices by Middle Eastern carriers.
“When he was asked why was SriLankan Airlines scheduling the country’s low cost carrier to operate these same profitable sectors as mentioned by him since they sell tickets at a cheaper price? he went on to give some irrelevant answers. This is absurd as with Mihin Lanka operating these sectors it is our sister airline that has become our biggest competitor on these routes. Further the surplus of passengers over booked on Mihin Lanka spill over to SriLankan Airlines and when we are full we end up giving Mihin Lanka passengers free tickets for being off loaded. The CEO also said that all staff rebated tickets will be slapped with a US$ 70 service charge. Earlier it was a fuel surcharge that was included in the staff tickets and now since global oil prices have dropped it is termed as a service charge. This is the only revenue generation plan I guess our airline has come up with in the last six months. No wonder the CEO’s probation has been extended. It was a waste of time listening to his poppycock. It is us pilots who always have to bear the brunt of a pay cut like we have done in the past. Now again the CEO wants us to give up our annual increments. They mismanage the airline despite being paid hefty sums of money and when they under deliver, we have to pay the price in spite of us doing our jobs right. Sadly in the last six months we have not seen him contributing in any way. Is this the calibre available today to resurrect our struggling national carrier? “asked a member of the Airline Pilots Guild of Sri Lanka, who attended the meeting. Staff are not permitted to speak openly to the media and do so on condition of anonymity.
When the pilots had questioned CEO Ratwatte about his salary he went on to say ” Even Colombo Telegraph had gone on to state that my salary is Rs 4.5 million. They get these figures all wrong and its best we ignore these websites. My salary in actuality is lower than some of the senior captains in the airline”.
However there is no transparency and it is yet to be established as to who pays the Chairman, the CEO and the Board of Directors of the airline their salaries and how much they really earn and what their total package constitutes. It has always been a closely guarded secret.
Colombo Telegraph merely reported the fact that he was appointed to the role of CEO SriLankan Airlines under the headline “SriLankan Airlines: Charitha Ratwatte’s Brother Appointed As New CEO” but never published his salary details or perks.
After that story was published many people had asked him if the story was factual. It was then that he was reported to have told people that Colombo Telegraph is a “non entity”.
Colombo Telegraph can confirm that nowhere did it mention the CEO’s salary to be Rs 4.5 million in any of its publications.
However what Colombo Telegraph can establish is that the CEO Capt. Ratwatte did once write to the Editor on the 18th of February 2015 and requested an article that he had written be published to commemorate the 25th death anniversary of the late media personality Richard De Soyza.
In his email to Colombo Telegraph sung in a different tune then, he went to state “I am avid reader of the Colombo telegraph and really appreciate the contribution you have made to the journalistic scene in Sri Lanka”.
As far as Capt. Ratwatte is concerned his appointment as the CEO of SriLankan Airlines with no prior experiences in this this role was purely based on nepotism. This is solely because he is the brother of Charitha Ratwatte, a close friend of Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe.
We publish below the email he sent to the Editor of Colombo Telegraph in full:
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Suren Ratwatte <suren[ Personal email – Edited out by CT]>
Date: Wed, Feb 18, 2015 at 3:35 PM
Subject: ‘Richard de Zoysa appreciation’
To: “email@example.com” <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Today is the 25th anniversary of the murder of my dear friend Richard de Zoysa. I am attaching a short piece I wrote in his memory, and I hope you will be able to include it in your publication.
I am avid reader of the Colombo telegraph and really appreciate the contribution you have made to the journalistic scene in Sri Lanka.