Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa says that a group of media personnel close to the President were continuously attacking him. He has made this comment to the head of Neth FM, Nihal Epa Seneviratne at the opening ceremony of an abode for monks at the Iyamporuwa Temple in Madiwela.
The Minister has made this comment in front of Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajaoaksa and the Navy Commander. Basil has said that the Belumgala programme on Neth FM had attacked him on several occasions and has said it was not justifiable to see the government being criticized by the media supportive of the government.
When Nihal Epa Seneviratne has tried to respond to the statement, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa had taken him away to another place. Basil had then told several senior journalists at the venue that even the Rivira newspaper that gets advertising from institutes under his purview continuously attacked him.
The Madiwela Iyamporuwa Temple in Madiwela is under the Chief Incumbent of the Los Angeles Buddhist temple, Ven. Aluthnuwara Sumanatissa Thero, who is a supporter of the Rajapaksas. The new abode for the monks was built by the Navy on a directive by Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.
However, several senior journalists have inquired from the Rivira CEO, Gairuka Perusinghe about the comment made by Basil. He has said that he was following directives of the President. He has added that the Rivira newspaper company has decided not to publish nay news against the President, the First lady or the three children and that the President has given permission to write and criticize any other member of the government.