"If the struggle against the SAITM continues in the same manner, the only option left is to topple the government. I have decided to commit my last phase of life to win this battle", former Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) chairman Prof. Carlo Fonseka said yesterday.
He said that he had confidentially referred a letter to former president Mahinda Rajapaksa when he was in power forewarning the current crisis over South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM).
Speaking to the media outside the Welikada Prison after visitng Medical Faculty Students' Action Committee Convener Ryan Jayalath who is currently in remand custody, Prof. Fonseka said he had referred this letter to former president Rajapaksa after he was appointed SLMC chairman in 2012.
“The SAITM which was established in 2009, later changed its name for ‘medicine’ from ‘management’. At that time, I felt that the SAITM would negatively affect the health sector of the country. Therefore, I referred a confidential letter to Mr. Rajapaksa,” he added.
He said that Mr. Rajapaksa upon receiving the letter, had directed the issue to former higher education minister S.B. Dissanayake and had directed Prof. Fonseka to monitor its proceedings. He also said that Mr. Rajapaksa had then reacted in a justifiable manner to the letter sent by him.
He said that he had taken every possible step to avoid the functioning of the SAITM in this manner since the beginning and added that he was never afraid of Mr. Rajapaksa during the period of former government; “Mr. Rajapaska has dealt with me in a kind manner. He would never go against any decisions of mine,” he added. (Kalathma Jayawardhane)