DNA MP and owner of the Mawbima group Tiran Alles forced the new editor of Ceylon Today Hana Ibrahim to leave her position at the Free Media Movement after the media activist group made a statement denouncing the newspaper management’s sacking of editor in chief Lalith Alahakoon last week.
An angry Alles reportedly called and threatened the FMM with legal action for releasing a statement expressing concern about the way Alles terminated Alahakoon and senior cartoonist Wasantha Siriwardane. Alles has also threatened to sue the Sri Lanka Working Journalists Association for issuing a very strong statement against Alahakoon’s sacking.
Hana Ibrahim was the former Treasurer of the FMM and until last week she was a trustee of the FMM according to the group’s website. But it is reliably learnt that Ibrahim tendered her resignation in writing to the FMM and told senior officebearers that she would stay under cover until matters die down with regard to the Ceylon Today issues.
Meanwhile the FMM has responded strongly to the Ceylon Today management’s threat of legal action saying they were ready for it sources from inside the group said. The sources said that it was positive that Ibrahim had quit the movement since she was no longer looking after the rights of journalists and only doing Alles’ bidding.
Ceylon Today sources said that the new editor of the newspaper has no control over the newspaper and that everything is decided in the offices of Mawbima Editor Thushara Gooneratne and Alles. According to sources from the paper it was this high level interference that Alahakoon was standing against which led to his dismissal.