S B Dissanayake

From TobaccoUnmasked

Background

Image 1: Minister S. B. Dissanayake.[1]

Dissanayake Mudiyanselage Sumanaweera Banda Dissanayake, known as S. B. Dissanayake, is a Sri Lankan politician. He was born on September 18, 1951.[2] Educated at Poramadulla Central Collage, Hanguranketha, he was an undergraduate of University of Jayawardenepura, Kotte. [3] S. B. Dissanayake is active in politics since 1977 and was elected to the parliament from the Nuwara Eliya District in 1994, representing the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) affiliated to United People's Freedom Alliance(UPFA), one of the two main political parties in Sri Lanka and the ruling party from 2010 to 2015.[4][2]Leading to the Parliamentary Election 2020, Dissanayake is the organizer of the Hanguranketha Electorate for Sri Lanka Podu Jana Peramuna (SLPP), the new political party that spun off from the SLFP, led by Mahinda Rajapaksa and one of the candidates of Nuwara Eliya District.[5]

S.B.Dissanayake had a history of imprisonment in which he was sentenced to two years rigorous imprisonment in 2004 for defaming the Supreme Court during a speech he made at a function in Habaraduwa in 2003. He was released by the then President Mahinda Rajapaksa in 2006. [6]

Narada and Tharaka are Dissanayake’s two sons. Narada Dissanayake, the eldest, is also active in politics, serving as the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Organizer for Hanguranketha Electorate since 2014, as the successor of his father in the post.[3][7][8]

Political / Government Position Held

  • 1970 to 1979 - Member of the Communist Party in Sri Lanka[2]
  • 1994 to present - Member of Sri Lanka Parliament[9]
  • 1994 to 2000 – Cabinet Minister of Youth, Sport and Rural Development[10]
  • August 2000 to October 2001 - General Secretary of the SLFP[3][11]
  • October 2000 to 2001 – Cabinet Minister of Samurdhi, Rural Development and Parliamentary Affairs[12]
  • November 2000 to September 2001 - Deputy Minister of Finance[13]
  • December 2001 to December 2004 - Cabinet Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Welfare[14]
  • 2002 to December 2009 - National Organizer of United National Party (UNP)[15]
  • November 2010 to January 2015 - Minister of Higher Education[16]
  • March 2015 to August 2015- Minister of Rural Economic Affairs[17]
  • August 2015 to August 2019 - Treasurer of the SLFP[18][19]
  • September 2015 to May 2017- Minister of Social Empowerment and Welfare[20]
  • May 2017 to April 2018 - Minister of Social Empowerment, Welfare and Kandyan Heritage[21]
  • November 2019 to Present - State Minister of Lands and Land Development[22]

Tobacco Related Activities

Obtaining Ceylon Tobacco Sponsorship for Football and Cycling Tournaments

In 1998, during Dissanayake’s period as the Cabinet Minister of Sports, CTC launched island wide football and cycling tournaments promoting “Bristol”, one of the cigarette brands of the CTC. The football tournaments named the “Bristol League" and the "Bristol FA Cup” targeted youth by displaying posters and athletic jerseys bearing CTC product names. The cycling tournament was named the "Bristol Tour-de-Lanka" and covered many areas of the island (Image 2).[23][24]

Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), the World Health Organization global convention on tobacco control, Articles 13 and 5.3 require signatory countries to ban sponsorship, CSI activities and interactions of government officials and agencies with the tobacco industry.

Image 2: Excerpt of the BAT Records reporting the CTC sponsored Football and Cycling Tournaments.[23]

Collaborating with Ceylon Tobacco as the Minister of Agriculture

In 2003, during his period as the Cabinet Minister of Agriculture, Ceylon Tobacco Company PLC (CTC) together with the Ministry of Agriculture jointly conducted a series of programmes to share best practices in agriculture for local non-tobacco growing farmers reportedly at the request of the Minister S.B. Dissanayake. CTC, the British American Tobacco (BAT) subsidiary, holds monopoly of cigarette manufacturing and sales in Sri Lanka and engages farmers to produce the tobacco needed for their manufacturing. According to the “Daily News”, the state owned national newspaper, three such programmes had been conducted in Sigiriya (for onion farmers), Kandapola and Hanguranketha (for vegetable farmers), in order “to achieve the government's agricultural vision of ‘Regaining Sri Lanka’ initiative".[25][26][27][28][29]

S.B. Dissanayake contested the Parliamentary elections from the Nuwara Eliya district where both Kandapola and Hanguranketha are located in, and Hanguranketha being his own electorate.[30][31] Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), the World Health Organization global convention on tobacco control, Articles 13 and 5.3 require signatory countries to ban sponsorship, CSI activities and interactions of government officials and agencies with the tobacco industry.

Arguing in Favour of Ceylon Tobacco Image Promotion

In 2016, at a parliamentary debate, MP Buddhika Pathirana criticised two newspaper advertisements, in the ‘’Divaina’’ Sinhala newspaper and in an unamed English newspaper, published by the CTC. One advertisement was about a CS project and the other was about an awards ceremony for CTC employees, and both included company logos. He argued that the advertisements on CSR activities displaying logos violate the National Authority on Tobacco and Alcohol (NATA) Act. S. B. Dissanayake stated its “unclear” whether it violates the NATA Act, even though he promised to bring it to the attention of the Cabinet of Ministers.[32][33]

NATA Act, the main legal framework on tobacco and alcohol in Sri Lanka, prohibits direct and indirect advertisements on tobacco and alcohol including ones promoting “manufacturers’ image”.

Image 3: Excerpt from the page 1482 of the Parliamentary Hansard, referring to the speech against the newspaper advertisement on the CSR undertaken by CTC.[32]

Tobacco Unmasked Resources

Other relevant TobaccoUnmasked pages:

TobaccoUnmasked_Sinhala
TobaccoUnmasked_Tamil



Notes

  1. Facebook. Official Facebook page, Undated, accessed June 2020
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 The Parliament of Sri Lanka. Directory of Members, Undated, accessed June 2020
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Manthri.lk. S. B. Dissanayake, Undated, accessed June 2020
  4. Election Commission of Sri Lanka. Parliamentary General Election- 1994, 1994, accessed June 2020
  5. S.B. Dissanayake. Official Facebook page of S.B. Dissanayake, Undated, accessed June 2020
  6. Asian Tribune. S.B. Dissanayake to be released on Friday, 16 February 2006, accessed June 2020
  7. Ada Derana. SB’s son appointed SLFP co-organizer, 31 August 2014, accessed June 2020
  8. Narada Dissanayake. Official Facebook page of Narada Dissanayake, Undated, accessed June 2020
  9. The Parliament of Sri Lanka. Directory of Past Members, Undated, accessed June 2020
  10. The Sri Lanka Monitor. People’s Alliance captures power, August 1994, accessed June 2020
  11. The Island. SB accuses CBK of making wild allegation, 11 October 2001, accessed June 2020
  12. Priu.gov.lk Website. New cabinet sworn in today, 19 October 2000, accessed June 2020
  13. Ministry of Finance. List of Ministers and Deputy Ministers, 22 January 2013, accessed June 2020
  14. Daily News. New Ministers, 13 December 2001, accessed April 2020
  15. The Island. SB to cross over to govt. today Makes farewell speech to UNP electorate President visits him in Hanguranketha, 07 December 2009, accessed June 2020
  16. The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Extraordinary. The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Extraordinary PART I: SECTION (I) — GENERAL Appointments & c., by the President, 22 November 2010, accessed June 2020
  17. The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Extraordinary. The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Extraordinary PART I: SECTION (I) — GENERAL Appointments & c., by the President, 26 March 2015, accessed June 2020
  18. Asian Mirror. S.B. Dissanayake Appointed to New Post in SLFP, 19 August 2015, accessed June 2020
  19. Ada Derana.lk. Lasantha Alagiyawanna replaces S.B. as SLFP Treasurer, 26 August 2019, accessed June 2020
  20. Daily Mirror Online. New Cabinet, 04 September 2015, accessed June 2020
  21. The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Extraordinary. The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Extraordinary PART I: SECTION (I) — GENERAL Appointments & c., by the President, 26 May 2017, accessed June 2020
  22. Ministry of Lands and Land Development. Hon. State Minister Assume Duties, 2020, accessed June 2020
  23. 23.0 23.1 John Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health; Seimon, Tamsyn; Mehl, Garrett L. Strategic marketing of cigarettes to young people in Sri Lanka: "Go ahead-I want to see you smoke it now", 1998, accessed June 2020
  24. British American Tobacco Records. Bristol: Brand Plan 1998, 1998, accessed June 2020
  25. Daily News. Agriculture Ministry, CTC take farming best practices to the hills, 17 September 2003, accessed April 2020
  26. The Island. Agriculture Ministry, CTC take farming best practices to hills, 14 September 2003, accessed April 2020
  27. The Sunday Leader. Agriculture Ministry and CTC to promote farming best practices, 04 May 2003, accessed June 2020
  28. Daily News. CTC launches second series of agro best practices sharing programmes, 12 November 2004, accessed April 2020
  29. The Island. Farmers to benefit from CTC’s programs on ‘Agro Best Practices’, 10 November 2004, accessed April 2020
  30. Census Codes of Administrative Units. Census Codes of Administrative Units- Central Province, undated, accessed April 2020
  31. The Island. A question of principled politics, 18 October 2001, accessed April 2020
  32. 32.0 32.1 The Parliament of Sri Lanka. Parliamentary Debates (Hansard), Official Report, 242(13), 25 February 2016, accessed July 2020
  33. Daily news. Parliament-26.02.2016, 26 February 2016, accessed June 2020