Edward Upali, whose preferred title is “Deceit in Reportage from ICIJ and Alecci”
Edward Upali is a Sri Lankan engineer who migrated to Alberta in Canada, where he resides now. His commentary on the partisanship and the muckraking pursued by the International Committee of Independent Journalists in their campaign against Sri Lanka is of considerable relevance. The highlighting in this Item is my imposition….. Editor, Thuppahi
ONE: Hi Michael, it is good that you are taking a more critical look at this piece by Scilla Alecci of ICIJ. In this “news report” Scilla is trading on the good name of the ICIJ to make a series of allegations by publishing some historically inaccurate “facts” as investigative journalism. I have given below the link to the Pandora Papers site’s listing of offshore account holders of Sri Lanka and other counties: viz. = Browse by country Sri Lanka | ICIJ Offshore Leaks Database
In the site there is no mention of Natesan, Nirupama Rajapakse, Gotabhaya R, Mahinda R or any of their relatives. Previously too when the Panama Papers were to be published, similar “news pieces” linking the Rajapakse clan to offshore accounts were published.
Again, there were many “news reports” just after the 2016 election that were given much publicity. For instance,
- a) a claim that Gotabhaya R (GR) fled the country on the election day in an air force plane to Singapore, but was refused landing rights, after which GR fled to Maldives. This report was published with photos! However, GR was seen washing his car at his house, the day after the election in 2016.
- b) There were reports that Lamborghini cars, owned by one of the Rajapakse kids, were found buried in the backyards of several Colombo houses.
- c) Mahinda Rajapaksa had fled the country to an island in Greece, rather than face charges!!
TWO: I was really annoyed at Scilla’s gossip being passed on as an ICIJ material. There were many inaccuracies in Alecci’s piece. You have already pointed out that D.A Rajapakse had little to do with disenfranchising the estate workers in 1948.
Again, this Natesan and Nirupama are small fry, and were hardly in the political limelight in Sri Lanka. Only thing Nirupama had in common with the Rajapakses was the name and being second cousins. Nirupama probably was more a friend of Chandrika than MR or GR.
If Alecci’s kind of slipshod work was done by journalists in Sri Lanka, Western journalists would have been preaching to us about the sanctity of journalist ethics, blah, blah, etc.
Alecci’s report no doubt is based on “facts” related to her by anti-government sources. I believe there are organised expat groups who keep feeding baseless stories to unwitting Western journalists.
APPENDIX: About the International consortium of Independent Journalists …. https://www.icij.org/about/ … The highlighting is theirs.
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