Sri Lanka’s new president Gotabaya Rajapaksa issued a gazette that the defence ministry which he heads, control over state institutions that govern for non-governmental organisations, as well as the telecommunications and media agencies.
According to the gazette, a total of 31 institutions will come under Sri Lanka’s defence ministry. This includes not only the three branches of the military, but also the National Media Centre, Secretariat for Non- Governmental Organisations, the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka and Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka.
As president, Rajapaksa currently also sits as Sri Lanka’s minister of defence.
The gazette also grants his elder brother and prime minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, control of 48 state institutions including the Treasury, Department of National Planning, Department of Fiscal Policy and the Central Bank.
“Look at the gazette,” tweeted former minister Mangala Samaraweera. “Defence is like a super ministry presided by a Czar.”