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“Media freedom has been restored but the ethical conduct of media men is questionable”: President Maithripala Sirisena

President Maithripala Sirisena 700 001

President Maithripala Sirisena has observed that while he is delighted that media freedom has been restored, he is perturbed over the manner in which it is exercised and the failure to follow the ethical values in reporting.

He made this observation addressing Sri Lanka’s ‘Presidential Media Awards 2019’ held at the BMICH on Wednesday.

During his address, President Sirisena said:

“For the past four years, there would not have been any politician who had been criticized like me, especially in web-based media. It is easy to criticize me because I have no connections with the underworld or criminals and I don’t misuse the Tri-Forces. Though I dealt with the insults and unfounded criticisms against me in a quiet manner, don’t expect that from my successor. The end result of these criticisms will be a far cry from what you expect.

This year is an “Election Year”. There are worst elements than politicians when it comes to corruption and fraud. But why is it that media men do not write about them. The media does not write about them because writing about them will invite trouble for their media organizations.

Where in the world there is full media freedom. The state media gets instructions to give priority for state affairs. Private media organizations operate according to the agenda of their owners. Can journalists write independently?

You can criticize the Head of State freely as long as I remain as the President. I received the people’s mandate to restore democracy, and here I see many faces that helped me to win the elections for that mission.”




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