Minister of Tourism Achela Jagoda appointed his private secretary Eranga Basnayake to chair the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) and the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) this week following the resignation of the former Chairman of the two institutions, Bernard Goonetilleke.
Speaking to the Business Times, Mr. Goonetilleke said it is the prerogative of the Minister to decide who should chair the institutions coming under him.
“The reason for my resignation is very simple,” he said. “I was invited to serve these two institutions by former Minister of Tourism Milinda Moragoda and I had the privilege of serving under three ministers including Nandana Goonetilleke and Achela Jagoda.”
Mr. Goonetilleke said Minister Jagoda was interested in making certain changes and following a discussion with the Minister, he submitted his resignation.
“The coming months are crucial months for the industry and the government,” he said. “I of course offered my services in whatever capacity is needed such as assistance from me to help in the work of the institutions. There was nothing sinister about my resignation. It was just to facilitate the minister.”