We Could Not Have Reached 18 Without The Team
The written word is yet the most powerful tool to prod the human mind . For eighteen years The Sunday Leader has strived to achieve that goal. It has been a long and arduous journey. The Leader set out to bring about change, for the better, from those holding the reins of the nation. We have had moderate success in that area. Nevertheless, we have been heard, quite loud and clear.
It was in 1994, June that Lasantha and I had a tete a tete on the possibility of publishing a weekend English newspaper. It was not with a great deal of seriousness that we went through the logistics at the outset. Somewhere down the line we became earnest and in June 1994 the paper was born. Reams have been written on Lasantha’s singular contribution to the paper which is now legendary. He bore the burden with great aplomb and led a dedicated team who were equally committed to the cause. Of course it was never easy to marry the dedication and committment of the journalists with commercial realities, but that is so with all newspapers around the world. Since Lasantha left us it was a brave group that Frederica led during the last three years. She took over a desolate bunch and spurred them on to regain and regroup to a very viable unit. The raucous laughter that emanates from the editorial floors on a friday evening comforts the others that alls well. The management is grateful to all those in the Editorial, Computer Section, Press Staff, Marketing and Distribution, Accounting and Administration and all others who have lent their shoulders to the wheel that is the Leader. Some who were with us have left our shores, gone to achieve better positions or retired. Some have passed the great divide. They are all remembered fondly. The awards that this newspaper has won apart from the multitudes won by the journalists for their work speaks for itself. The painstaking effort that goes into each story speaks of the quality that is placed before you each week. Unlike most newspapers the Leader allows the journalists a degree of freedom which does not obligate them to tow a line which is dictated by the management. It has therefore not been an easy ride through the 18 years. The years ahead does not guarantee any comforts either. But, that was what the newspaper set out to achieve. Stand apart from the followers. The numbers who burn the midnight oil during the latter part of the week though small, deliver a worthy read on Sunday. As independent research organisations have it The Sunday Leader is amongst the first three Sunday newspapers in the country – a no mean feat given it’s fiercely independent stance. To the dedicated staff I cannot thank enough for their selfless toil.
Finally, it is my pleasure to thank all the readers who have stayed with this newspaper through it’s many vicissitudes, the Legal Team, Advertisers and well wishers.