The Sunday Leader

Uthayan A Target

  • Jaffna Mayoress Calls For Ban On Tamil Newspaper

By Nirmala Kannangara

The Jaffna Municipal Council (JMC) has issued a circular banning all government institutions and libraries operated by local government institutions from subscribing to the Uthayan newspaper.
Following the Uthayan newspaper’s expose in its March 22, 23 and 24 editions of an irregular tender by the JMC, Jaffna Mayoress, Yogeswari Patkunarajah had instructed all government institutions to not subscribe to this newspaper nor invite any journalists from it to cover state events, interact with the journalists, provide any information or send press releases to the paper, according to its Chief Editor, M.V. Kanamylenathan.
“In the true spirit of investigative journalism we exposed how the JMC advertised a tender calling for bidders to build a five storeyed shopping complex in Jaffna town.
On October 27 last year Patkunarajah had presented a proposal to the council to build a five storeyed shopping complex. Generally such proposals should come from the members and not from the Mayoress. However in this instance the proposal came from her and she was able to get the necessary approvals from the council. Meanwhile, Patkunarajah  ignoring the local Tamil newspapers in Jaffna, advertised the tender notification in two Colombo publications — the Daily News and Thinakaran which has a small circulation in Jaffna, Mullaithivu, Kilinochchi, Wanni, Vavuniya and Mannar,” Kanamylenathan said.
Further, recounting the incident he said as a result there was only one application and this bidder is allegedly a friend of Minister Douglas Devananda. “Although there are no provisions for any local body to offer a tender unless there is more than one bidder, Patkunarajah offered the tender to Minister Devananda’s friend without advertising for a second time,” Kanamylenathan said.
According to him, following the exposé the JMC was in turmoil and the opposition members on April 5 had urged the Mayoress to cancel the tender and to advertise once more in the four local Tamil newspapers to which the ruling party however had objected.
“Although the opposition members created mayhem in the council requesting her cancel the tender the ruling party decided to go for a vote. Since many opposition members were absent it was passed by one vote the same day. The very next day we once again exposed the heated arguments that had taken place,” Kanamylenathan said.
According to Kanamylenathan, it was on that day (April 6) Patkunarajah had issued a circular to all government institutions and libraries that come under the local authorities not to subscribe to the Uthayan newspaper.
Our attempts to contact Patkunarajah for a response failed.

8 Comments for “Uthayan A Target”

  1. love2beTRAITOR

    look wat the tamil is doing???
    omg, suppressing the media freedom within her power range…
    this country’s all 3 communities have same type of politician.
    how nice would it be if the people of the 3 communities think alike just like politicians

    • noname

      Thats why EPDP & Karuna still need the army. Thats why tamils always d not trust the colombo Govt, Thats why you guys are still not abe to Tamils to the countries advantage. Just to let you know during LTTE time LTTE had their shopping complex and no one dare to be curropt lke this.
      for their people they were truthful

  2. tony silva

    Corruption in public service. Whats new in sunny SL ?

  3. R.M. B Senanayake

    We do not want this type of devolution of power. The frontier between the political Executive and the administration must be observed. Since with the 18th Amendment all power has been monoploized by the President all other bodies seem ti be following in the same footsteps. We want local government according to the best practices of governance. We can’t have elected rulers and sub-rulers who can govern in a way that pleases them. How to enforce the proper conduct of governance while allowing for eleced officals is the challenge facing the country. But tradionally we were used to a King and Petty kings in the provinces. The Sinhalese fear of devolution arises from this breakdown of instituions and best practices.

  4. rao

    what di d u expect from human right violators and corrupted politician installed.
    yime will come to clear srilankan politics like other arab nations sweeping change

  5. The nothern Military Governor issued instructions last year that all ‘development work’ projects must be given to persons from the south.
    The ‘gravy train’ runs from the mayor, through Devananda, through the Governor, to Mr. TenPercent.

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