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Friday, 20 July 2018
Friday, 20 July 2018 | Sri Lanka Watch
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Controversy over Lasantha Wickramathunga murder investigations. PDF Print E-mail


Investigations over the murder of Lasantha Wickrematunge will now change its course towards interrogating General Sarath Fonseka for a possible involvement in the killing. The reverend Chief Editor of Sunday Leader, with his career well known for critical and out spoken journalism, ended in murder on January this year. 

Although the court case for the killing of the internationally recognized journalist had continued up to this date, there appears to be no sign of an eventual capture of the cold blooded master mind behind the murder. Through out the country and even from the international territory many protests, and condemnations of the slaying was campaigned, it was only last week, the case was shifted to the investigation of the CID.

The lawyers speaking for the case of Lasantha Wickremathunga murder trials showed no pleasure in the obvious delay in transferring of the case to CID. “We had repeatedly requested to hand over the case to CID for proper investigation. After 10 months of neglect we are happy that at long last the case has turned to CID investigation”

Yet, as some suspects the abrupt change of mind to hand the case over to CID and the sudden yet not so surprising decision to question Fonseka has some cryptic significance.

General Sarath Fonseka continues to insist he has nothing to do with the killing of Lasantha Wickremathunge. Recently, at a news conference, the retired army Commander vehemently refuted the alleged dealings of his connection with the murder.

With the sudden CID investigations on the run, a new turn of events was witnessed, when Secretary General Gotabaya Rajapaksha told Lankadeepa, “Sarath Fonseka is bleating media freedom when his past actions were on the contrary”

Speaking further, Mr Rajapaksha said, “We kept quiet about Lasantha Wickremathunge killing because we wanted to save the armed forces. The reason is we did not think of personal matters since we had a common goal. My aim was to defeat the LTTE. I had already accepted the accusations made by the media on media freedom although we kept quite on the matter. I am stating all this because Sarath Fonseka is singing a different tune these days”

Similar statements were repeated by Gotabaya Rajapaksha on other print and electronic media. The main point to take note of is he was aware of the details in the killing of Lasantha Wickremathunga on top of all accusations of assaults, intimidation, harassment or white van abductions of journalists.

What anyone can grasp is that Fonseka’s statement has provoked the Gvt into revealing some details that should have left unsaid- from the Gvt’s point of view.

It could be stated with conviction that Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksha’s statements will go unmissed by the media rights groups, both local and international.

One wonders whether Gotabaya Rajapaksha is playing into the hands of the opposition and certainly the International community who have been keeping a hawk eye on the media freedom issues of Sri Lanka.

It is anyone’s guess of a political mudslinging scandal for the upcoming presidential polls that might be revolving beneath the charges of Lasantha Wickremthunge murder investigation.

It will be interesting to see what the situation will develop into and without doubt statements will fly back and forth from both parties which will evidently lead to more controversy.  No mistake, both parties are seeing prospects of gaining points for themselves.

What’s important is to see whether the real culprits will be unearthed and the justice is prevailed. Yet it will be another quest to find out whether hidden expectations led the way to “justice”
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