Feb 03, 2022

Sonala gets to work : Derana to get hold of SLRC YouTube channels Featured

Sonala Gunawardena, the newly appointed Chairman of the state owned Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC), is currently said to be in the process of handing over the management of the YouTube channels owned by the SLRC to IdeaHell.

IdeaHell, located at No. 45/6, Alwis Place, Colombo 03, is another company operating under Derana owner Dilith Jayaweera. His advertising agency - Triad (Pvt) Ltd., is located at the same address.

Soon after assuming duties as the SLRC chairman, Mr. Sonala had highhandedly taken a decision to remove the company who had previously managed the YouTube channels owned by the SLRC.

The company has been managing the SLRC's YouTube channels for the past three years and they have been removed despite their contract been extended in November 2021 after an in depth supervision of their work.

However, it is learnt that the chairman's decision to transfer the management of their YouTube channels to a company co-owning another competitive private television channel has been met with the objection of highly placed officials of the SLRC.

Mr. Janith Rodrigo - General Manager of IdeaHell, has led a delegation to the SLRC  today (02) to sign the agreement, but the signing has been postponed until tomorrow (03) amid objections raised by SLRC bigwigs.

Mr. Janith is also the General Manager of TV Derana Digital Media.

Derana 001

However, it is reported that Mr. Sonala is now attempting to intimidate the top SLRC  officials who are opposing the move, threatening that the President is voicing his opinions.

It is also said that the relevant agreement has been prepared in a way that the revenue garnered by the SLRC's YouTube channels will also go directly to 'IdeaHell'.

SLRC employees point out that it is highly dangerous that a private company will be given the ability to maintain control of SLRC digital content including news, current affairs and state events.

Meanwhile, Upul Shantha Sannasgala, who is coincidentally a teacher of Mr. Sonala in the past, says that the last media Godfather was Kili Maharaja and one of the two who will succeed him is Dilith Jayaweera.

Accordingly, SLRC employees question whether Mr. Sonala is now attempting present the SLRC's digital media rights on a Golden platter to the next media Godfather.