FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION SRI LANKA

For press freedom by Sunanda Deshapriya

Lake House dumps editor Ockersz. Abeynayake becomes daily news editor

 Political maneuvering has resulted in a shakeup of the editorial hierarchy  of the Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd. (ANCL), better known as Lake House.

Lynn Ockersz, who took over as editor of the Daily News early in  April 2011,  was unceremoniously sacked   a few days ago  for refusing to follow the orders of the Lake House management  to print a front-page story adverse to human rights lawyer J. C. Weliamuna.
Rajpal Abeynayake, a peripatetic journalist who has previously worked on the editorial staff of the Sunday Tmes and the Sunday Observer, is the new editor of the Daily News. He served as the editor  of the Lakbima News, a weekly rag he founded after his dismissal as the editor of the Sunday Observer.

Speaking from Colombo, a former Lake House journalist senior journalist said yesterday, “Funny things happen here. Rajpal was sent out and now comes back. He will do the dirty work that the top men want. Lynn apparently refused to use a  piece on J C Weliamuna, human rights lawyer, on page 1 because he didn’t find it of any news interest. And the next day he was sent out. Manik [de Silva] continues in the Sunday Island. He is the only journalist worth talking about.”

Meanwhile, Ockersz  has re-joined the Island (Upali  Newspapers Ltd) , where he has  resumed his previous  job as a foreign news analyst.  Ockersz was a former senior associate editor of the Daily News, which he left  in July 2007  to join the Island.

Lake House newspapers did not mention any reason for the appointment of a new editor for the Daily News.

| by Shelton A. Gunaratne
SLG

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This entry was posted on November 21, 2012 by in news and tagged , , .
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